Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 3rd Jan 2008 23:01 UTC
Features, Office Ars reviews Office:Mac 2008, and concludes: "Perhaps the best thing that can be said about software that one uses in the course of working is that even if it doesn't make the work fun, it doesn't make it any worse, and that's certainly the story with Office 2008. Those spreadsheets, presentations and software reviews won't write themselves, but now it's a deal easier to make them look like they did. That it does that in just the way you'd want a great Macintosh program to behave is good news for Office workers."
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Good work Microsoft
by CrazyDude1 on Thu 3rd Jan 2008 23:49 UTC
CrazyDude1
Member since:
2007-09-17

Office:mac 2008 is really a nice product from Microsoft. The most important aspect is that the new Word produces really nice looking documents and that is a big plus in my eyes.

One thing I don't understand is that why they changed the ribbon. I prefer the Windows office 2007 style ribbon more.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Good work Microsoft
by kaiwai on Fri 4th Jan 2008 00:06 in reply to "Good work Microsoft"
kaiwai Member since:
2005-07-06

One thing I don't understand is that why they changed the ribbon. I prefer the Windows office 2007 style ribbon more.


Because the purpose is to create a Mac application, not a 'Windows application which has been ported and no one could be stuffed turning it into a Mac application".

That was the one big problem with previous versions; they were out of place or when they did try to make them more Mac OS in their behaviour, it failed miserably.

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[2]: Good work Microsoft
by Johann Chua on Mon 7th Jan 2008 11:10 in reply to "RE: Good work Microsoft"
Johann Chua Member since:
2005-07-22

Very ironic, considering that MS Office started as a Mac app.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE: Good work Microsoft
by Doc Pain on Fri 4th Jan 2008 01:30 in reply to "Good work Microsoft"
Doc Pain Member since:
2006-10-08

"The most important aspect is that the new Word produces really nice looking documents and that is a big plus in my eyes."

But this will not prevent users without any clue to produce documents that look like crap. In most cases, it's the user who determines the look of a document, not the word processor used. (The best word processor can only output garbare in terms of layout, typography, orthographical correctness and content if it is not used the way it should be, and, on the other hand, a mechanical typewriter can output a document where nobody will find any reason to complain if it is used correctly.) And it will not prevent users from putting a RAR archive that contains a video into a "Word" document and export it to HTML to e-mail it to somebody else, saying "Look at this video clip I found!" :-)

As always, typography isn't really one of MICROS~1 strengths, even if they develop something that should be used on Mac OS which is the top system for professional DTP and typesetting.

Just judging from the screenshots, it seems to waste much vertical space with the default set of icon bars.

I won't say it looks bad, because it does not look bad, and it seems to follow Mac OS X's native look and feel better than expected, while on the other hand it explicitely rejects them (e. g. sharpened corners while everything else is rounded), but I bet most OS X users will tend to use NeoOffice or OpenOffice instead of this expensive product that lacks some important standard compatibility and interoperability features...

From the article: "[...] the path of least resistance suggest[s] that using Word is for the best." -- Here, I would reply that the path of least resistance usually is the path into oblivion. :-) (Refer to human history for more examples.)

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: Good work Microsoft
by h3rman on Fri 4th Jan 2008 01:56 in reply to "RE: Good work Microsoft"
h3rman Member since:
2006-08-09

but I bet most OS X users will tend to use NeoOffice or OpenOffice instead of this expensive product that lacks some important standard compatibility and interoperability features...


This one does.
Most will.. if they know about it.
The Mac store sure won't tell 'em about NeoOffice, which is Just Fine (tm) for most people and rather stable too.

I get a tiny bit sad when the many new mac users out there pay a lot of money for MS Office for Mac when all they're ever going to do with it is.. well not that much (skip elaborate examples of stupid things people tend to do with WYSIWYGs).

Not every Mac user is a graphic designer.

Reply Parent Score: 5

RE[2]: Good work Microsoft
by CrazyDude1 on Fri 4th Jan 2008 07:07 in reply to "RE: Good work Microsoft"
CrazyDude1 Member since:
2007-09-17

DocPain: First of all referring Microsoft as MICROS~1 etc shows your bias against them so your views really hold much lower credibility.

As far as looks of the document is concerned, my point is that if you make the exact same document in Word 2003 and then in Word 2007 (i.e. by doing the same things like same headings, same title etc), the document word 2007 produces is far better due to it's ability to do better layout, much more aesthetic fonts etc.

As a side note, Open office produces really crappy looking documents.

Edited 2008-01-04 07:09

Reply Parent Score: 6

RE[3]: Good work Microsoft
by chemical_scum on Fri 4th Jan 2008 12:57 in reply to "RE: Good work Microsoft"
chemical_scum Member since:
2005-11-02

As far as looks of the document is concerned, my point is that if you make the exact same document in Word 2003 and then in Word 2007 (i.e. by doing the same things like same headings, same title etc), the document word 2007 produces is far better due to it's ability to do better layout, much more aesthetic fonts etc.

If you want to produce good looking documents use LaTeX otherwise use a wordprocessor. Any old wordprocessor will do as long as the person the other end can read the format you send them.

Edited 2008-01-04 12:58

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE: Good work Microsoft
by shapeshifter on Fri 4th Jan 2008 03:10 in reply to "Good work Microsoft"
shapeshifter Member since:
2006-09-19

One thing I don't understand is that why they changed the ribbon. I prefer the Windows office 2007 style ribbon more.


The ribbon would be too complex for the Mac simpletons.
They've been conditioned for decades to only handle a few buttons and one menu.

And the black text with dark gray background widget is really smart. Mac users must have a cat like vision.
I sure would find the lack of contrast tiring and difficult to work with.

Reply Parent Score: -1

RE[2]: Good work Microsoft
by MysterMask on Fri 4th Jan 2008 14:14 in reply to "RE: Good work Microsoft"
MysterMask Member since:
2005-07-12

The ribbon would be too complex for the Mac simpletons.

Thank you for your comment. Makes you look smart*. Especially since any good software design strives for simplicity not complexity. Or in the words of Antoine de Saint-Exupéry:
Il semble que la perfection soit atteinte non quand il n'y a plus rien à ajouter, mais quand il n'y a plus rien à retrancher.

*) the same applies to the people who voted +1 for an obviously offensive comment

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[2]: Good work Microsoft
by alexandru_lz on Sat 5th Jan 2008 21:11 in reply to "RE: Good work Microsoft"
alexandru_lz Member since:
2007-02-11

> The ribbon would be too complex for the Mac simpletons.
> They've been conditioned for decades to only handle a few buttons and
> one menu.

Well, more or less...

I pretty much agree to the idea of not including the ribbon from Windows versions. In Windows, the Ribbon is there exactly in order to address the most common problem that crowded toolbars have: people are used to have every bit of functionality on their toolbars, and as the number of functions they use grows, so do the toolbars, even though some are not relevant at all times.

The Ribbon is a wonderful idea for complextons :-> who have been conditioned to fill half of their screen with buttons. Apple's approach -- probably just as efficient on today's large screens, but arguably better in the days when 800x600 was huge -- was to keep only what is relevant at all times in the toolbar. It's enforced by their UI guidelines, and it's quite efficient if the menus are correctly structured (i.e. Header and Footer is not under View...).

Not having the ribbon is a fair decision, trading coolness for consistency. Not to say that adding an option to enable it wouldn't have been a good idea for new OS X users.

Also, considering the amount of customization that can be done, it may be a good idea to include a solution to carry customization options around, like I carry my .emacs on my stick.

Reply Parent Score: 1