Google Docs Spreadsheets Get a Fresh Coat of Paint

Just in time for Halloween, users of the Google Docs cloud app get the ability to dress up their data with all kinds of new visualizations, with new charts added and old ones getting a makeover. The update also adds a chart editor designed to make the process easier. Here’s the scoop.

The new charts added by the update, per the official Google Docs blog entry, include annotated time-lines, organizational charts, and motion charts that show data changing over time. Existing charts get new color palettes, new layouts, and new customization options for a “more professional look and feel.”

Meanwhile, the new charts editor sounds a lot like a Microsoft Office Wizard: it suggests charts from the selected columns, selects colors, offers a preview pane, and more, making them easier to generate. And if you publish your chart to a website, said chart will update as the spreadsheet its based on does.

As usual from Google Apps, it’s a minor update. But it’s one that speaks to their growing awareness that yes, businesses and schools are using their cloud platform.

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