Google Documents - Outline Alternative to TOC

Google has implemented an option that is a great alternative to the Table of Contents!

Many people felt (especially with LONG documents) that a Table of Contents (TOC) added a lot of clutter to the top of the document, even while it provided needed links to the document sections.  (If you don't know what the Table of Contents is or want to know more about it, check out my post  Google Documents - Using a Table of Contents.)  Like in this example -


Google has now added another option to provide those links without it being added to the top of the document - it is the Outline option.  This is found under the Tools Menu -

Once you select it, an outline is displayed on the left side of the document -

What is displayed?  Well, like the TOC you have to utilize the formatting for headings & titles rather than set them manually & individually-

(A note - you can always customize the color/font/size of the headings by setting that particular heading once, then clicking on the arrow next to that heading name to apply it to all headings of that type.)

Pros:
  • outline is in left sidebar
  • easy to turn on/off
Cons:
  • exporting to another format does not carry this feature over (like you can with TOC)
  • large loss of  area for content display if viewing in browser on a mobile device (especially phones) 

Have any other pros/cons to using the Outline over the Table of Contents?  Share them in the comments!

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