Free Software Sets the Computing Agenda
Posted Jul 20, 2006 14:44 UTC (Thu) by hein.zelle
In reply to: Free Software Sets the Computing Agenda
Parent article: Free Software Sets the Computing Agenda
Don't get me wrong, I would like nothing better than OpenOffice indeed being just as good as MS Office. Maybe it even is, for most users. Remains the problem (for me at least) that by copying all the features of MS Office, OOO has also copied several of the nasty ones, and probably some that could be called "bugs" as well. In daily practice working in an office environment where a lot of MS documents (text, spreadsheets and presentations) are thrown at me, there are far too many times when I run into trouble trying to view or edit these documents using OOO. If that were the only problem it wouldn't be too bad, but OOO annoys me about just as much as MS Office does when writing new documents. Too many things just don't work consistently - for example managing page / paragraph styles in text documents or spreadsheets, or dealing with automatic numbering or images.
Those and many more are my personal peeves with OOO, but I see a lot of people that have similar problems. Given the current basic layout, design and workflow of MS and OO office suites, I wouldn't be too sure that Microsoft's switch to a different look or workflow is something bad. It may cause grief with existing customers, but they may also actually achieve a significant improvement in their software by letting go of the past a bit.
I would be much more interested in seeing OOO move towards a higher level of usability than towards a higher market share.
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