This article initially misstated the price of using the TextFlow service within Box.net. It costs $9.95 a month, or $99 a year. Read the updated story here.
Here's a useful partnership: take a company that lets people compare and selectively combine multiple versions of a Microsoft Word document (TextFlow), and put it together with a company that hosts documents and has built-in communication tools (Box.net).
The partnership solves one big problem, and that's wrangling multiple versions of a file. Instead of the onus being on one editor to herd them together by e-mail, they can just have each user edit a single copy stored on Box. Those users can then save the file back as a version of the file, which an editor is able to compare--at up to seven versions at a time, from a TextFlow page within Box.
Another benefit of having Box handle the storage is that TextFlow can now save charts and images from within documents. Previously, these were stripped out in the TextFlow conversion. Users can even move them around within the document, just as if they were in Word.
This has one big effect on work flow, specifically the bit at the end, which is where TextFlow's system fell apart. Sure, it was great to speed up the edit process, but at the end, you were stuck adding these document elements back in from a previous copy.
According to Nordic River CEO Tomer Shalit, who spoke with CNET last week, this same kind of functionality, which includes the images and charts within documents, will eventually trickle down into TextFlow proper.
The only other road bump--and one Shalit anticipates will be fixed later on--is that Box's system does not allow users to select multiple files and compare them--only multiple versions of the same file. This is the exact opposite of how people use TextFlow on its own, which is where some confusion may initially crop up with long-term TextFlow users.
The new feature requires that users be paid Box business subscribers to use it, since it takes advantage of Box's file-versioning system, which is available only with the higher-end plans. It also requires being a paid user of TextFlow, which runs $9.95 a month, or $99 a year. To that end, this will be the first tool for Box users to compare different versions of the same file from within the service. Previously, users would have had to get local copies of each of these, then run them through TextFlow or CompareMyDocs.
Correction 10:26 a.m. PST: This article initially misstated the price of using the TextFlow service within Box.net. It costs $9.95 a month, or $99 a year.… Read more
If you're a regular user of the revision comparison feature in Google Docs, you'll likely enjoy new service Compare My Docs. It comes from the same folks who created TextFlow, the Adobe AIR-based app that spot differences across multiple copies of a Word document or rich text file.
Compare My Docs does many of the same things as TextFlow, including being able to compare up to six versions of the same document to see what's been changed. The big difference though, is that it runs right in your browser and requires no sign-up whatsoever.
Just like TextFlow, … Read more
TextFlow, the Adobe AIR application that lets users collaboratively edit documents, is now available in the browser. Users can group together multiple versions of the same document and selectively pick which edits they want to keep--just like they would on the desktop version, but now without software.
Along with the move to the browser, the service now hosts your documents so you can access and begin editing them from any computer. The company has also lifted the file size limit, meaning you can finally upload and edit documents more than 10 pages in length--not being able to do so was … Read more
TextFlow, a new way to collaboratively edit documents, is opening up to everyone Monday morning. Instead of going the real-time route like Zoho and Google Docs, the service opts to let a master editor corral multiple versions of the same Microsoft Word document inside of one file.
Each editor sends in a copy of the file (presumably via e-mail), and the master editor drags and drops all of them into a single bucket. The application then divides the edits into sections, letting the master editor pick whichever revisions make the most sense. When finished, he or she can convert it … Read more