iWork or Office

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I'm sure that this has been discussed before, but I'm buying my first Mac and I need to decide. I'll be using the Mac for my graduate degree and really only need a word processor that is compatible with the Microsoft ran computers that my colleges use. I know that you can save files as "rich text" in iWork and open them on Microsoft software, but is this process a hassle? Do I loose fonts, etc. in the process? I've heard that Excel isn't very good in the Office Suite for OS X. I rarely use Excel except for minor equations so there really isn't a need there. What would I get in iWork that Office can't give me? Any advice is appreciated.
 
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If Windows/Office compatibility is a must, I'd go with Word. RTF files can be a hassle sometimes, even though it's "rich text."
iWork is probably a little easier to use and more focused on publications and "creative" stuff (newsletters, posters, etc). For your needs, I'd go with Word.
 

chscag

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I agree, go with Office 2008. While iWork08 is a very nice suite of applications and will read Office files it does not automatically save to them. It can be set to do that, but has to be accomplished each and every time you save a file. In my work that is an inconvenience I could not accept.

Regards.
 
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Word for School, no question. iWork doesn't bother making citations, bibliographies or referencing easy (or even possible) for some bizzare reason - it seems to think being able to make Christmas Cards and flyers is more important.
 
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Office without a doubt
 
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try NeoOffice

personally I use NeoOffice because a) you can save files in Word format or .rtf format as well as others and b) it's free!! You also get an excel-compatible spreadsheet and a powerpoint-compatible presentation package. Interestingly, NeoOffice was able to load and read .docx files from Windows Vista before my copy of Word was! You can download it at www.neooffice.org.
 
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I strongly second neooffice.org. You get a better, compatible, and more reliable product for NONE of the price.
 
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If you feel like burning money, or donning an eye patch and setting sail, go for Office 2008. Word, Excel, Powerpoint are all there and work as they should, as is "Outlook" but under a different name. Everything will feel similar to that PC experience and you'll soon feel right at home.

However - If you want something that supports Microsoft .docx (spit) the open document formats, runs a lot quicker and is free, NeoOffice or OpenOffice are both great products and should be investigated first before you make a decision. The interface resembles more of Office 2003 than anything, and you may spend a few extra seconds here-and-there locating your usual features, but it's all there, for free.

I bought Office 2008 to cover my work needs, however most of what I do is covered by NeoOffice.

Horness
 
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I just installed my Office 2008 software that arrived today. I love it so far, however I have only done minimal editing and creating so far this evening.
 
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I strongly second neooffice.org. You get a better, compatible, and more reliable product for NONE of the price.

dauber -- New mac owner with basic question...
After I downloaded the file, it recommended I download the latest patch. I did as instructed, but does dragging the patch file to the Application folder automatically apply the patch to the NeoOffice program, or does something else have to be done?

Thanks for any help...still trying to learn this new OS!
 
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iWork doesn't bother making citations, bibliographies or referencing easy (or even possible) for some bizzare reason
Wow, it's a wonder I ever managed to graduate college without using Word, since apparently it's impossible to format citations without it. :Smirk:
 
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dauber -- New mac owner with basic question...
After I downloaded the file, it recommended I download the latest patch. I did as instructed, but does dragging the patch file to the Application folder automatically apply the patch to the NeoOffice program, or does something else have to be done?

Thanks for any help...still trying to learn this new OS!

No it will not.

Mount the patch.
Install the patch
unmount the patch
Delete the patch.
 
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I third NeoOffice! But I recommend dumping it for OpenOffice 3.0 (due September, I believe). This version will have a native Mac port, which should be much better than a pseudo-native Java program like NeoOffice.
 
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Wow, it's a wonder I ever managed to graduate college without using Word, since apparently it's impossible to format citations without it. :Smirk:

Nice. Well I graduated College on an Atari ST... so I'm not suggesting that, just if the options are there, take them. When you go to grad school, try a 16,000 word dissertation; citation, reference and footnote tracking becomes a lot easier on a decent WP.

Word isn't the only way, but that Apple targets students, and yet their flagship word processing software doesn't bother with this, slightly irks me. I'll get over it...
 
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I would recommend iWork as a companion to Office. Microsoft Word is way better for students than Pages, shortcuts and formats are a lot easier on word. However when it comes to Powerpoint, Keynote is 10 times better. The transitions formats are SICK, and if u got a presentation to do at school just grab your DVI to VGA converter along with your Apple Remote and just lay back and control your presentation from afar. Its slick.
 
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Well, I'm probably in a minority here, but having used both, I'd highly recommend iWork 08 instead. Sure, Office has some cool functionality and definitely some more precision features.... but my number one gripe with Office 2008 was how freaking slow it loads, even on a blazing fast brand new iMac or MBP.

Since I need Office for work on occasion, I still keep it installed... but I went back to Office 2004. In my opinion, it's at least a bit quicker than 2008; though it won't like to read the newer XML document format.

But for everyday stuff, iWork is excellent. It's quick, simple, easy to do all the basics. And Numbers kicks the crap out of Excel for all but the most complex spreadsheet scenarios.
 
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Well, I'm probably in a minority here, but having used both, I'd highly recommend iWork 08 instead. Sure, Office has some cool functionality and definitely some more precision features.... but my number one gripe with Office 2008 was how freaking slow it loads, even on a blazing fast brand new iMac or MBP.

Since I need Office for work on occasion, I still keep it installed... but I went back to Office 2004. In my opinion, it's at least a bit quicker than 2008; though it won't like to read the newer XML document format.

There must be something wrong if a PPC Rosetta app is running quicker than a Universal app on your Intel machine.

Make sure you disable the project center at launch and the extra fonts. Word isn't the quickest out of the gate, same as Safari Vs Firefox, but my macBook Core Duo (2006) launches word in about 7 or 8 seconds, so yours should beat that.
 
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There must be something wrong if a PPC Rosetta app is running quicker than a Universal app on your Intel machine.
Indeed there is, but, well, that's Microsoft for you.

I'm half kidding. Sometimes Office '08 is faster, sometimes Office '04 is faster.
Installing the latest Service Pack (12.1.1) helps a great deal.
 
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Indeed there is, but, well, that's Microsoft for you.

I'm half kidding. Sometimes Office '08 is faster, sometimes Office '04 is faster.
Installing the latest Service Pack (12.1.1) helps a great deal.

Well I installed 12.1.1 update and it did improve my load time. Thanks for the tip, I can't believe I didn't check that first! Now it loads in about 6 - 8 seconds, which is perfectly acceptable to me.

I still personally prefer iWork though-- it just has the feeling of a quicker and slicker app, albeit at the loss of some of the more complex and granular features.... but how many people really use all those anyways?
 

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