Posted: Fri Jun 01, 2007 1:16 am Post subject: MacUser (UK) sings the praises of NeoOffice 2.1
My subscription copy of MacUser Vol 23 No 11 (25 May 2007) has just arrived with a major feature no/low-cost alternatives to mainstream apps from the likes of Adobe and Micro$oft.
Here's a flavour:
"NeoOffice is arguably the most complete desktop altenative to Microsoft Office on the Mac. The aqua port (sic) of the open-source OpenOffice.org suite, NeoOffice comprises...."
"Another important reason to consider NeoOffice is that it is currently the only Mac application that can read documents saved in Microsoft Office 2007 new .docx XML format."
"It doesn't feel quite as responsive as Office, which can be partly attributed to the fact that it runs on Java. The spreadsheet module can be ponderous dealing with larger, chart-heavy documents.
"In general, neoOffice makes a good stab at opening native Excel documents. We could import documents that included charts without a glitch. Success at importing Excel files with embedded Visual Basic for Applications code was more hit and miss. NeoOffice does claim to support it - which ironically puts it ahead of the forthcoming version of Microsoft Office for Mac, which will drop support for it - but it didn't work in every case."
"In terms of feature compatibility with Word, though, it's difficult to fault NeoOffice's word processor. It might look clunky, but its features make up for the lack of beauty. It's the only Mac application that properly supports Word's Track Changes."
"NeoOffice still doesn't feel like a Mac application. There's been an effort to ensure consistency between applications, but dialogs still look odd, and there's no simple way to open a component application directly: you have to navigate the NeoOffice menu."
Overall, a quite balanced review, I feel. Comparison is made with ThinkFreeOnline, ZoHo Suite, Google Docs & Spreadsheets, Nisus Writer Express, MarinerPak.
Be prepared for a lot more downloads! _________________ Ray Saunders
World Scout Bureau
Joined: May 25, 2003 Posts: 4752 Location: Santa Barbara, CA
Posted: Fri Jun 01, 2007 2:49 am Post subject:
I bet they haven't been trying Patrick's latest test patch with the new text layout algorithms
Thanks for sharing quotes.
I'm glad we have OpenXML support and am hoping to continue the integration of the odf-converter project for spreadsheets and presos as that project matures. The powers that be seem to be having fun dragging OOo into a document format war; I just think that's childish since the ability to have near-seamless compatibility with Microsoft Office documents is the primary reason OOo has taken off and is still popular in the first place. Information wants to be free and not tied down to any specific format or app, even if it is "open". No one needs a cookie cutter; people outside the Vista/Office07 sphere need Swiss Army knives
David Cartwright, IT Consultant and regular contributor to Linux Format magazine, wrote in the Opinion column (LXF 93):
The day I didn't rant
Someone recently asked me what the big deal was regarding the fight between Open Document Format (the ISO/IEC standard for storing documents created by 'office' applications) and Office Open XML (the Microsoft equivalent developed for Office 2007, which has been opened up to the public).
I opened my mouth for a bit of a rant, but couldn't really think of anything to rant about. The thing is, it's not actually a big deal. True, it's a bit of a shame that we have two document formats rather than one, but I've completely failed to get excited by (or to agree with) the harbingers of doom who whinge about interoperability.
That's what translators are for!
The fact is that we have two open standards, and the various software guys around the world are busy writing their translators and their importers....
...If you are sending out documents to third parties, much of the time they will be in PDFs anyway. And if the third party needs to be able to edit the document, well that's where translators come in. Just like they always have since the year dot, when (say) someone could only deal with RTF, or WordPerfect format, or SYLK (remember that?), or CSV.
It won't be long before I can load MYOPENDOC.ODT into Word or MYWORDDOC.DOCX into OpenOffice Writer. And given the tiny number of times that I have such cross-platform issues, I really don't care if, for a few weeks, I have to do a Save As in one package in order to load the result into the other.
And if, like me, you have NeoOffice installed on your Mac and you've already received a .docx file, as I did yesterday, you'll know you are ahead of the curve anyway! _________________ Ray Saunders
World Scout Bureau
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