Google Docs has recently released two major additions that continue to make it one of the most powerful collaboration tools on the web. If you haven’t tried Google Docs yet, do yourself a favor and spend an hour exploring it. If you already use it, take a moment to check out these two new big features:

Integrated Discussion

Borrowing from the functionality of Google Wave, new Google Docs now have the option of a discussion page where authors can have an asynchronous conversation about the document they are editing. The feature effectively adds the Discussion Page feature offered by many wiki tools, which lets you separate the planning of your document from its production.

Check out this video about the new discussion feature:

Collaboration via Microsoft Office (Google Cloud Connect)

This is a big addition for those more comfortable with the look and features of the standard Microsoft Office suite. Google Cloud Connect is an add-on for Microsoft Office (Currently only available for Windows) that allows you edit GoogleDocs through the Microsoft Office interface. This effectively gives you the benefits of sharing and storing your files in the cloud, but use the tools and the interface in Microsoft Office with which you may be more comfortable.

Check out this video about Google Cloud Connect:

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