Zach over at NoSheep! wrote an article about Web 2.0 and the Long Tail that intrigued me. That article linked to another article by Tim O’Reilly that discusses various services that are getting heavy notice on their innovations on the web. One has really caught my eye….Writely.

The gist of this application is that its a Word Processor online! You can type documents (much like you can with MS Word or OpenOffice.org) through a web interface. The application has an auto-save, hot keys, exporting to HTML and Word, HTML editing and the ability to publish to blogs! Oh, and the sweet part about it…you tag your documents and can distribute them with other users. I teach a course at Plymouth State University and the last quiz that I administered was typed up using Writely. I’ve done a few other documents since then and it seems extremely slick.

That doesn’t mean its perfect. Writely is still in Beta (as most Web 2.0 apps are) and I have a few issues with it so far. When you export a Writely document to Word, it works but the formatting looks a little off. Also, there are a number of features that are provided in a full-fledged word processing application that are not yet provided in Writely. But thats what the beta is! Check it out, use it, make suggestions.

If you haven’t checked it out…do so. It’ll be worth your while.