(Updated December 2013 with high-resolution photos and new product information) Do you have 30 minutes to spare? It's all you'll need to get up to speed with Google Drive, a free online office suite that duplicates most of the functionality of Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint. Millions of people use Google Drive and its popular word processor, Docs, every day. Whether you own a business, work at an office or school, or are a student, you too can use Drive and Docs to perform the following tasks:
• Write letters and reports
• Enter data into Sheets, Google's free online spreadsheet program
• Give presentations using Slides
• Collaborate online with classmates and colleagues on important documents
• Convert Microsoft Office documents to Google Drive, and vice versa
• Print documents, drawings, and spreadsheets
• Export PDFs
• Make pie charts, bar charts, and simple tables
• Publish documents and spreadsheets online
There are a lot of features, including some unfamiliar ones for people who are used to Microsoft Office. "Google Drive & Docs In 30 Minutes" cuts through the clutter, using screenshots, step-by-step instructions, and plain English. After covering registration, file creation and other basics, the book zeroes in on the most important time-saving tips and productivity tools. Highlights include:
• Converting files between Microsoft Office and Google Drive formats.
• Best practices for organizing files in Google Drive.
• What to expect with collaboration in Google Drive.
• Using Google Drive on phones and tablets: What works, and what doesn't.
• Accessing older versions of files.
• How to publish your documents to the Web for colleagues or members of the public to view.
• Sorting and filtering data in Google Spreadsheets (with examples).
• Using Web Forms to gather data.
• Google Slides: Is it a suitable alternative to Microsoft PowerPoint or Apple Keynote?
• Working with offline files.
• Downloading third-party apps.
"Google Drive And Docs In 30 Minutes" is authored by Ian Lamont, an award-winning technology journalist. He has written several books in the In 30 Minutes® series, including "Dropbox In 30 Minutes", one of the top-selling educational reference titles on Amazon.com, and the recently released "Twitter In 30 Minutes".