We set out to create a Google Docs replacement, as well as a Microsoft Word replacement when creating MindStaq, in large part because we were ourselves looking for a better way to collaborate than synchronous collaboration.
We get that we may not be using words that folks use in everyday vernacular, but consider that a Google Docs replacement should move beyond the way Google and even now Office 365 works. Each uses synchronous collaboration, meaning that multiple people can edit a document at the same time, meaning the last person editing a document has the most input or more cynically, the most power. A Google Docs replacement needs to allow every inputting contributor to have the same opportunity for feedback.
When it was first introduced, real-time collaboration was welcomed as it allowed for a low-cost opportunity to collaborate in a one-on-one or one-on multiple editors situation. Unfortunately, many team projects have documents where many contributors are needed, leaving the team with a Darwinistic “survival of the…” latest editor situation that makes looking for a Google Docs replacement necessary.
But what kind of form or function do you need to have a Google Docs replacement that moves from synchronous to asynchronous collaboration. And what the heck is asynchronous collaboration?
Asynchronous collaboration means that many can have input into a document, presentation, spreadsheet., etc. but only one “owner” can approve or disallow change. This owner is able to take multiple individuals’ feedback, but have the ability to take changes as suggestions rather than the free-for-all that is synchronous collaboration making a Google Docs replacement necessary in the first place.
Unlike the typical, costly solutions, MindStaq’s asynchronous collaboration is baked in to our basic version, providing both control as well as documentation of collaboration process in the cloud. As a Google Docs replacement, MindStaq and its asynchronous collaboration allows for thoughtful, reasoned feedback to be reviewed rather than a wild west of changes. MindStaq as a Google Docs replacement also enables multiple perspectives to coexist while contribution can lead to a discussion versus a veto.
Whether you can remember what exactly “asynchronous” means is probably irrelevant… but what’s key when looking for a Google Docs replacement is to find orderly and affordable content creation and management software that allows you to work together, not in some sort of synchronous one-upmanship.