With the addition of the upload-any-file feature to Google Docs, it was only a matter of time before users would need an organizational tool. Today the Internet giant answered that need with a refresh to the documents list, making it easier to find, explore and share Web-based files.
New filters allow users to narrow a search by type, visibility state, and other criteria, while priority sorting has been added to all views. Priority sorting is like Gmail’s Priority Inbox, taking in a number of a usage statistics in order to put the most relevant files at the top of the list. Other sort orders like Last Modified Date or by Name are also available.
Google Docs refresh
The visually inclined will be happy to know that this update includes a preview panel which displays thumbnails and sharing settings, or a full screen slide-show viewer (pictured below) if you’re into that kind of thing. If the file is a video, you can start playing it directly from the preview panel as well.
Google Docs slide-show viewer
Another new option called Home is a customizable view of a user's most-often accessed content. Google generates this list automatically, and unwanted files can be removed from the viewer (but not from the repository) with a right click.
Further, Collections have replaced Folders in the left navigation bar. "Collections are designed to combine the best features of labels and folders," says the official Google announcement. "A file can live in multiple collections, just like with Gmail labels. Collections can also be stored hierarchically, just like folders on your desktop. And of course, collections can be shared, just like you can share docs."
The cherry on top is Google's reported overhaul to its back-end, making the whole Docs experience a shade snappier. If it hasn't hit your account yet, have patience. The Internet giant says it should be available to all users over the next couple of days.