05-15-2006, 10:20 AM
You can read about it the thread "new to the iMac...pretty underwhelmed".
MS Office was a big thing for us as well, because we use our family computer for word processing and spreadsheet work. We all know how to use the MS Office tools and it seemed like a smart purchase. Our familiarity would help ease the transition.
We felt right at home with it and the things that it does differently are universally better..the UI is slicker and it has a nice look and feel. We all immediately liked it better on the Mac.
Performance is another matter. It's really slow. Since it was our first Mac application and the one my wife and I used initially, it caused us both to be really disappointed in the iMac. Since then we've learned about Rosetta, emulation and memory (our iMac came with 512MB). We've also used some of the other Mac applications that run natively. We are learning to like the Mac, but MS Office continues to pretty doggy. It runs just fine on my son's laptop (G4), so we feel pretty comfortable saying it's not the application, it's the implementation the Intel iMacs. If you plan to use it more than just casually, I don't think you'll be happy with the performance.
Other folks can speak to Open Office, but we experimented with it on a Windows machine. You can't beat "free" and I have nothing but praise for the folks that work on it....but it's a bit slow and I found a few formatting things it doesn't do/understand. For casual use it's probably fine...I wanted it to edit large work documents on a personal laptop and I don't think it's quite ready for that.