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Monday, August 6, 2007

Google Documents API Released

Google released a brand-new API titled “Google Documents List Data API.” Sounds confusing, but the “Google Documents List” is just the Windows Explorer-style file browser available at, currently storing your text documents, your spreadsheets and soon your presentations (mark your calendars for a Google Presentations aka Presently release in August, perhaps coming Monday, if Google sticks to their schedule; a renaming to perhaps “Google Documents” is in order around then, too, as “Google Docs & Spreadsheets & Presentations” is impossibly long).

This new API, which re-uses the Google Data API (GData) framework, can be used to upload documents or to grab a list of existing documents. Full text search for grabbing particular documents is supported too. Google delivers coding samples for this for Java and Python (PHP, one of the most widely-used server-side scripting languages, is missing from the list).

What can you create with this API? As usual, the API doesn’t restrict you to a set of use-cases. But what you could do is create a semi-perfect backup system for all the Word documents on your local computer. You could also create a website which provides an alternative file explorer for Google Documents. (And as authentication is supported, you don’t need to restrict yourself to listing public documents.) You could also try to mix and match this API with other Google service APIs. At this time, added to Google Documents, the growing list of GData APIs include Google Base, Blogger, Google Calendar, Code Search, Google Apps Provisioning, Google Notebook, Google Spreadsheets and Picasa photos.

[Thanks Danny!]


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