Random notes about Google Doc Spreadsheet Web form lameness

I set up a Google Docs webform to allow parents in my kid’s classroom to enter the books their kids are reading.

Here are some lameness notes about Google Docs Spreadsheet Webform that I found:

Connecting a webform to a spreadsheet has not been appreciably enhanced since feature was introduced, specifically:

  • Cannot add notification rules to email others (or email lists)
  • Cannot customize the report
  • Cannot add minimal permissions based access to the webform and summary. For example, I would like:
    1. people to login
    2. enter information in the web form fields
    3. have one of the columns( UserSubmitting ) be the login user id (automatically generated like timestamp is)
    4. Be allowed to see a summary of only the data that has their login id in the UserSubmitting column
  • Allow multiple selection fields to be computed based on a VLOOKUP. For example, if the person enters “2 yellow” as the reading choice, the book choice should be based on an sheet:
    Reading level Book Title
    1 yellow Snowmen Play
    1 yellow Dogs and Cats Living Together
    2 yellow Bunnies and Hungry Dogs with sharp teeth
  • No ability to select from a list or enter an alternative not on the list.
  • No ability to enter a value for a field and then have it apply for multiple entries. This would be simple to do by having multiple pages. On the Thank you for submitting page, the user would have a link that would allow them to go back to marked pages. This could be configured when creating page breaks when creating the webform.
  • I know how to do this, but there is no cookbook/boiler plate examples for embedding the form in another webpage.

Final lameness, Gmail does not allow emailing tarred/gzipped google summary page because it contains executable content!

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