Mountain View, California -- Google continues to spruce-up its cloud-based Microsoft Word competitor-Google Docs more feature rich. The California based Chocolate Factory on Tuesday trumpeted another key upgrade in the shape of pagination, which lets users see visual pages on their screen similar to the way people have been doing via the Microsoft Word word processing app for two decades, giving yet another reason to dump desktop based word processors altogether and move your typing into the cloud.
One of the major goals for Google was to rekindle the editing and writing experience in desktop applications within the Docs interface in the browser.
Rather than display your documents as one long compact stream, the new pagination option adds the ability to see individual pages in Google Docs, with breaks highlighting where each printed page will end, imitating the traditional page view long since found in Microsoft Word and other word processors.
Click to enlarge...
"Today, we are delivering another first for web browsers by adding a classic word processing feature--pagination, the ability to see visual pages on your screen," said software engineer Luiz Pereira on the Docs blog.
With the new capabilities, you can actually see visual pages on your screen, similar to the experience of editing a document in Microsoft Word. Also, we can further enhance the way other features work too: headers are now displayed at the top of each page instead of just at the top of your doc, manual page breaks actually move text onto a new page and footnotes appear at the bottom of the pages themselves.
From Google's blog post: Pagination adds visual page breaks while you are editing your documents, so now you can see how many pages of that report you have actually finished.
The option works in all the major browsers, not just Chrome, and can be turned on and off by clicking on the View menu, choosing Document View, and then opting for Pagination or Compact view. Moreover, we are also applying pagination and some of Chrome's capabilities to improve how printing works in Google Docs. Previously, to print a document, Google converted it to a PDF which could then be printed. With the new printing feature, Google allows you to print a document directly from the browser.
Printing functionality however remains the same: "Currently, native printing is only available in Google Chrome, but we are optimistic that other browsers will implement the same web standard too so everyone can have the best possible printing experience with Docs," added Pereira.
"Pagination and native printing are an excellent illustrations of how modern browsers are making it possible to deliver the best parts of the desktop experience and bring them online," said Pereira.
Essentially, the new feature comes one year after Google revamped its Docs editors to be speedier and better render documents users view in Google's Chrome Web browser. These features are bundled with a ruler for controlling the margins and text that wraps around images.
Pagination is rolling out now and should be available to everyone by the end of the day. The idea of unwrapping these novel feature was to make Docs less primitive seeming and function closer to the way desktop-based word processing apps work.