The Kilkenny Voice Archives: Online Office (16th July 2008)

Elf Knows IT


Online Office

Office applications play a part in almost everyones day to day routine, Spreadsheets for accounts, Presentations for teachers/lecturers, and Word Processing for almost all uses. What if you could get all this in one place, with access to all your documents no matter where you are? With Google Docs,( an online office suite from Google, all you need is a computer and a fast internet connection to get access to all the right tools, and your documents.

Fully Featured

For a web based office suite, Google Docs is packed with features. It has almost everything you would expect to find if you were using software on your computer.

You can easily do all the basics, including making bulleted lists, sorting by columns, adding tables, images, comments, formulas, changing fonts and more. 

Use Your Existing Documents
Google Docs lets you upload and import a lot of popular file formats, including DOC, XLS, ODT, ODS, RTF, CSV, PPT, etc. Once uploaded you can edit the documents like you always have, except now you can get to them no matter where you are through Google Docs

Share And Collaborate With Others.
A great use of Google Docs is a group of people from any location can view, work and improve documents. But only people you want to access your documents can, restriction to the document is set by e-mail addresses.
You can also publish your work as a web page, and with the link to this page, anyone can access the document as if it was any other web site. With this feature they can only view the document, not edit it.

Download Your Work

Just like uploading your documents, you can download them back to your computer too. You can save your documents and spreadsheets to your own computer in DOC, XLS, CSV, ODS, ODT, PDF, RTF and HTML formats. 

Get Started!
All you need to use Google Docs is a Google account, if you have a Gmail e-mail address, you already have one. If you don’t, you can easily register at

Ask the Elf

I have an old computer at home which I am giving to some relations. I have done some personal work on it. I have deleted it all but I have been told that deleting the files will not stop people accessing them, can the information still be accessed and viewed? Is there any way to make sure my old information on the PC is well and truly gone?


It’s true, by deleting files you’re not actually removing them, it just marks the space where the old file was as unused on the file system table until a new file takes its place, it’s the same as placing a new poster over and old unused poster on a notice board, you see the new poster but you can still see bits of the old poster behind the new one. So any files you have had on the computer could still be lying around in there somewhere, but it’s not a matter of someone using the computer seeing the files and opening them, they won’t be able to see them, you would need the right software, and an idea of what you’re doing to get access to the old files.

There is ways to make sure your data is well and truly gone, there is a lot of free software out there to do the job such as Eraser Secure Data Removal Tool (

This great free piece of software removes files from your computer by overwriting them with completely random data. So there’s no need to worry about anyone seeing it once you pass on your computer.

It’s always good practice to make sure you use a program like Eraser when passing on or throwing out an old computer. Especially on a computer you’ve worked with some personal or private material on. It’s also a good idea to use the program I mentioned above to delete any internet history, or related files from the computer. This is a feature built into the program, so it makes it easy to do. Find more answers, and ask your questions at:

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