While attending the Linuxforum 2006, the Writely project was mentioned several times. Writely is an online, web based, Word Processor that has collaboration features, much like a Wiki, and Writely has support for a number of Word processing formats, including the Open Document Format
The two main selling points of a service like Writely, is it’s collaboration tools and the online storage of documents. Collaboration tools has, thus far, been gravely missing from our desktop office productivity software. And everybody that has had a computer crash, or have even once switched computer, knows the problem with storing documents locally.
These days only creative writers and students are working from isolated islands, they have no real need for collaboration tools, but the rest of us are struggling with mailboxes overloaded with documents, that are out of date as soon as they’re mailed.
It’s amazing that it’s possible to develop rich applications like Writely, it really show the potential of AJAX technologies and the promise of Web 2.0. With all your documents stored online, you can break the chains of the desktop.
The future of Writely seems secure, since it has just been acquired by Google. Unfortunately Writely isn’t accepting new members until the platform has been moved to Google servers, but you can sign up for an e-mail notification when it opens again.