The race is on to deliver desktop quality productivity plus the enhancements of more web-based Web 2.0 interactivity like the real time sharing of documents than any desktop app can dream of… And, I think, with its various acquisitions, Google has taken the lead in this race. For example, they recently acquired the web-based word processing application Writely.
Next up, and soon to be released is Google Spreadsheets (click here to request an invitation to the public “beta”) which will give you Excel-like powers in a browser-based application.
Google’s Spreadsheet “Sneek Peek” preview is here.
John Markoff’s NY Times analysis is here.