Google’s anti-Microsoft strategy continues to unfold. Today brings news that its online Docs applications will soon step beyond the Web and onto the desktop. (This is accomplished with the Google Gears browser plug-in, which lets you access internet applications while offline by using the hard drive as a cache – a company representative offered to “whitelist” me so I can start using it today, but the less privileged among you will have to wait until this feature becomes generally available over “the next few weeks.”)
Google likes to cloak its new product features in uplifting rhetoric: the company only looks to delight its users, it isn’t motivated by the sort of competitive strategy that other companies employ, and so on. But the evolution of Docs has always looked like a very deliberate plan hatched with its Redmond rival in mind.