With the release of Apple’s iWork, along with the continued improvement of Zoho and Google docs, it seems like word processors and spreadsheets are becoming commodities. Microsoft has kept users in the truck with their file format for years. Now they’ve opened up their format and the ecosystem is changing.
Except for some specific kinds of documents, I don’t really care which word processor or spreadsheet I use. I’d like them all to roughly work alike and have compatible file formats. The files should be stored in the cloud and I should be able to read and edit them with whatever tools are at hand.
It’s like the laptop computer. I no longer like carrying them around. No matter how small, laptops have become “transportable” and not “portable.” Give me either a smaller device like the iPhone, or let me access what I need from any where. In the future, I won’t need to own a my own computer or word/number editors. The data is mine and is valuable, the access and the tools will be commodities (or perhaps part of the commons).