With Google Docs you can not only upload or edit documents and spreadsheets but you can also make highly customizable forms that you can email or even embed in your website so that user can input data directly into the form which will them aulomatically be loaded and saved to a spreadsheet that can easily be accessed via http://docs.google.com. Embedding custom forms on websites and blogs is a nice idea specially if you are have a tough time fighting email spam. In this way you will not have to make yoour email address availably publically and special automatic email harvesters will not be able to steal you precious and personal email addresses.
This quick tutorial will show you how easy it is to create a form with Google Docs. First use the above link to login to your Google acount. If you do not have an account then create one as it will not cost you a penny. Now I assume that you have registered, logged in and opened your Google Docs page. From the menubar select New>Form. This will open a new window with an untitled form that can be cutomized easily at your will. You can add many data input fields from that window. The fields currently being offered are:
– Paragraph Text
– Multiple Choice
– Check Boxes
– Choose From a List
– Scale (1-n) – Used for rating
Here is a sample Form created just to let you know how would the form look like after you have saved it. All the fields in the form are customizable with the exception of ‘Powered by Google Docs’ and ‘Google TOS’ links. Feel free to comment and play with the sample form 😉