Tuesday Take-Away: Style Management in Google Docs

Those who know me recognize that my evangelistic zealousness for cloud computing is always tempered with a healthy dose of pragmatism.  I see the benefits, the efficiency, and the value of cloud computing and Google Apps well beyond the basic savings.   And yet, even I have not fully migrated off MS Office for some of my productivity needs.

Why?  I am a “moderate power user” of MS Office.  I rely on preset and custom styles to make formatting documents easier.  And until now, styles have been lacking in Google Docs. This is not a huge problem, I just never liked the size, font, and spacing selection of the standard Heading styles in Google Docs.

Fortunately, change is here.

In Google Docs, you can now change the default styles to meet your preferences.  To do so is simple.  First, set up the text they way you want it to look — font, size, attributes, line spacing, alignment, et cetera.  Next, pull down the style menu, click on the arrow next to the style you want to define, and select “Update to Match Selection.”  Voila!  You have a style.

There are a few limitations.  Most notably, your styles are saved for the document only and not as a default template.   You can, however, create a document as a style sheet, make it ‘read only’ and make a copy when you need a blank document with your style preferences.

As responsiveness to customer feedback and constant innovation lead to new features and capabilities in Google Apps, the case for Google Apps grows stronger.  Click here to learn more about the benefits.