Linked by lemur2 on Wed 22nd Jun 2011 22:30 UTC
Features, Office The Calligra Office Suite has announced its second snapshot release. The project, which is a fork of KOffice, is building a suite of productivity and creativity applications and is working towards its first formal end-user release due in October. The project is seeking feedback from end users particularly in the area of usability of the GUI. With this snapshot Calligra Office Words is claiming better compatibility with .docx than LibreOffice, and also claims to be approaching the best compatibility with legacy .doc formats.
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RE: holding things back
by lemur2 on Thu 23rd Jun 2011 05:45 UTC in reply to "holding things back"
lemur2
Member since:
2007-02-17

The two things holding open office suites back for me is the poor docx conversion and horrid interfaces. The old ms office style of menu after menu is overkill and a horrid waste of time. It doesn't have to be a ribbon, it just has to use the space better.


These are the very two areas that Calligra Office hopes to improve on. This aim was stated in the first snapshot release:

http://www.calligra-suite.org/news/calligra-announces-first-snapsho...
Our goal is to provide the best application suite on all platforms based on open standards. That is no small goal. We feel now that we have improved the foundation enough to start working seriously on improving the user experience. For this, we need the help of our users!

We will therefore release monthly snapshots, starting today, until the final release in October. These snapshots will be packaged by most major Linux distributions and instructions on how to install them will be provided too. We hope to get lots of feedback on the snapshots so that in October we can finally announce "Calligra is now end user ready and is the most usable free office suite of all".


For an indication of the state of play with regard to the Calligra Office suite GUI, there was a "Tour" posted at the time of the first snapshot release a month ago:

http://www.calligra-suite.org/news/calligra-2-4-snapshot-1-tour/

The GUI is one of the primary areas targetted for improvement, along with compatibility with MS Office, performance and layout. The existing GUI has widescreens in mind, and it is fairly consistent across the multiple applications.

The final step is to make sure I can open my resume and it looks the same as it does in Word. Technically this isn't totally their fault; but Microsoft makes it very easy for people to keep relying on Office. When they can't open documents they've created earlier and print out an exact replica they go right back to Office. Office OpenXML really pisses me off...


This is actually a double standard, if you think about it. MS Office is, after all, absolutely abysmal at opening documents and having it look the same as in the originating application if that originating application was not MS Office. Abysmal. Utterly hopeless.

Edited 2011-06-23 05:48 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 5

RE[2]: holding things back
by stabbyjones on Thu 23rd Jun 2011 06:50 in reply to "RE: holding things back"
stabbyjones Member since:
2008-04-15

Tables and weird formatting just never seem to convert correctly. I'll install all the KDE libs just to get better docx conversion.

An included mobile version is a great idea too. I'm really looking forward to trying this out now!

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[3]: holding things back
by cdude on Thu 23rd Jun 2011 23:43 in reply to "RE[2]: holding things back"
cdude Member since:
2008-09-21

You filled bug reports for Tables and weird formatting?

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[2]: holding things back
by bassbeast on Sat 25th Jun 2011 15:45 in reply to "RE: holding things back"
bassbeast Member since:
2007-11-11

Ya know I hear this "meme" for lack of a better word, of MS Office being incompatible with itself but honestly I've never seen it and I mess with some seriously large docs with all kinds of funky formatting. I also have multiple versions of MS Office to deal with, with this machine I'm typing on running my beloved Office 2K while my home machine has Office 2K7 and my oldest has Office 2K3. I also had to deal with a project where I had people collaborating with Office 2K, 2K3, 2K7, and one on Office for Mac (2K4 I believe) and again ZERO problems.

Compare this to Open Office where I've actually seen family members get their grades dinged because OO.o turned out word salad when opened in Office 2K3, with broken headers and footers and when I was in school I myself got dinged because the teacher couldn't open an Open Office doc with MS Office without it looking like a shotgun splattered mess.

This is why I only give LibreOffice (I swear, what is it with FOSS and lousy names? Caligra? LibreOffice? Gimp? what's next, the Goatse video player?) to home users with the warning that as long as they are gonna print the results, or are just writing a doc for their own use? its all gravy. but if you are actually needing to share or collaborate with the outside world, or heaven forbid send a resume? Do NOT use a FOSS Office suite.

Oh and there is a DocX compatibility pack for MS Office 2K and 2K3 and it works quite well, I have NO trouble opening the files created with Office 2K7 and up. There are plenty of things to complain about when it comes to MSFT, but the quality of their business software ain't one of them. there is a reason why despite "free as in beer" people would rather buy or pirate MS Office, and that is because it does make a difference when you have to share your creation with the outside world.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[3]: holding things back
by lemur2 on Sun 26th Jun 2011 03:31 in reply to "RE[2]: holding things back"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

Compare this to Open Office where I've actually seen family members get their grades dinged because OO.o turned out word salad when opened in Office 2K3, with broken headers and footers and when I was in school I myself got dinged because the teacher couldn't open an Open Office doc with MS Office without it looking like a shotgun splattered mess.


The only way you will get this is if you save your document in OpenOffice as an ODF document.

If you re-open such a document in OpenOffice, or any other OpenDocument-capable oofice suite except MS Office, then it will be absolutely fine.

MS Office, however, makes word salad of such documents. This is a failing of MS Office, it has piss-poor interoperability.

The simple solution for this is for OpenOffice/LibreOffice users to save documents (meant for interchange with other parties) as MS Office legacy formats (.doc, .xls etc). MS Office 2K3 does have a reasonable ability to open documents in these legacy formats. No word salad then.

A even better solution is to export documents meant for interchange with other as PDF files.

If you were interested in offering people decent advice, this is what you would tell them.

Edited 2011-06-26 03:31 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[3]: holding things back
by m_abs on Mon 27th Jun 2011 17:11 in reply to "RE[2]: holding things back"
m_abs Member since:
2005-07-06

Ya know I hear this "meme" for lack of a better word, of MS Office being incompatible with itself but honestly I've never seen it and I mess with some seriously large docs with all kinds of funky formatting. I also have multiple versions of MS Office to deal with, with this machine I'm typing on running my beloved Office 2K while my home machine has Office 2K7 and my oldest has Office 2K3. I also had to deal with a project where I had people collaborating with Office 2K, 2K3, 2K7, and one on Office for Mac (2K4 I believe) and again ZERO problems.

You have been very lucky, I've had plenty of costly problems with just have people work on different installation of the same version of MSO.

Back then I wrote my thesis, the group had decided using MS Office 2k3 which were what the academy were using at the time. But we had no end of problems with work from people home computers.
Some members of the group had MS Office 2k3 in Danish and others had it in English, this made auto indexing troublesome because the tag for headline is localized.
If any of us added a new illustration it would almost always be moved when we opened the document at academy.

The last day before handing in the thesis we spend on correcting spelling, language and layout of the document. I can't remember exactly how much of that time we spend fixing layout problems, but it was a lot. One of the things we had to do was removing all headlines and adding them again, so we were sure that we could generate a full auto index. All images had to be repositioned so we were sure they were in the right place. And so on.

I realize this was many years ago and a very old version of MSO and I don't really know if it would have been better to have written the thesis in OOo, personality I wish we had taken the time to learn LaTex.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[3]: holding things back
by phoenix on Mon 27th Jun 2011 17:43 in reply to "RE[2]: holding things back"
phoenix Member since:
2005-07-11

If you install all the security updates for MS Office XP and 2003, then you will no longer be able to open MS Word 2/6/95 documents. You won't even be able to open them in WordPad. Ran into this issue just last month as we have a teacher with several hundred Word 6.0 documents they've been using for years ... that they can no longer open on their Windows XP machine using MS Office 2003!!

What's even worse, though, is that MS Word can't open MS Works documents without paying MS for a "File compatibility pack".

And there's always the "Office X can't open Office X+1" documents without going through a lot of hoops.

At least with WordPerfect, any version after 7 can open any versions documents, due to the use of SGML for the document format. I've even personally tested that WP9 can open documents created and saved in WP14, without any issues. Try that with MS Office, without adding any extra packages.

Reply Parent Score: 2