If you’re like me, I’m sure you’ve come across a program or a new feature of a program  and you aren’t sure what the heck it’s actually for?  Sometimes it happens at work. Your boss gets sold on some piece of equipment or software and is absolutely positive that all of you are going to love it and get so much use out of it. Yet the staff stands around trying to figure out what it’s for.

I must admit I had a similar reaction when checking out Microsoft’s Docs.com app.  I’m just not sure what I’m supposed to do with it. You’ll find Docs.com among the Microsoft Office Apps at Outlook.com. Like all of these apps, it is free to use.

Go to the Outlook.com inbox and click the little square of squares at the top-left. Then select Docs.com

outlook-apps

outlook-docs

Doc.com will open.  The first thing you’ll see are options to upload documents from your PC, OneDrive, or the Microsoft Sway app.

upload-to-docs-com

Click on Personalize your Page.

personalize-page

You can then build a personalized page that shows off documents you’ve created.  You can also create a journal to tell the story behind creating the document.  This is what your page will look like.

personalize-page-docs

I am assuming that if you are extremely talented at creating documents, spreadsheets, or Sway presentation you could post them here as some type of resume.  You can also create collections that show off things you’ve found online. You can then share these things with others. Though I still am not sure why.

doc-com-collection

It feels like a social network for document fans.  When you upload a spreadsheet, document, PowerPoint presentation, or Sway presentation, you can  retitle it and then add a description. The site says it’s to attract an audience. But an audience of who? Who is the audience?

doc-com-options

When you scroll down you’ll see visibility options. The document can be public or only visible to those who go to the direct link. But nothing you share on this site is private. So I wouldn’t put anything top-secret or personal there.

doc-com-options-public

There’s also the options to put in a Creative Commons attribution. Which makes me think the purpose of the site could be to offer templates that other users can adapt. This may just be a way for Microsoft to crowdsource Office templates instead of making them.

doc-com-options-cc-license

Apparently, I’m not the only person who wonders what the precise role of this app is. I found several questions about it on Microsoft’s forums.  This is what I found out from reading Microsoft’s answers.

Docs.com is designed to display well across all types of devices. So if you want to publically share an Office file with people who don’t have Office, this is a good way for them to view it.

Docs.com is intended for files that you want everyone to see and share. If you want to work on a document with someone and control who can see and edit your files, you should use OneDrive.

You can also embed your Doc.com documents or collections into your website and people will be able to view your items. Okay, I’m starting to see how that could be a useful function.

So, if you’ve got content in the form of Office documents that you need to share with the world, Docs.com could be a handy tool.

I’m curious, has anyone else used Docs.com?  How do you use it?  Let us know in the comments.

~ Cynthia