Office

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Office 2k7 ribbon:

Love it
17
18%
Hate it
19
20%
I don't use M$ Office
31
32%
Who uses WYSIWIG office programs?
18
19%
Otter/duck
11
11%
 
Total votes: 96

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cjmcjmcjmcjm
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Office

Postby cjmcjmcjmcjm » Mon Jul 19, 2010 5:49 am UTC

This started out as a discussion in another thread, starting around here: viewtopic.php?f=7&t=62142&start=120#p2236729

Anyway, I asked about the Ribbon UI from M$ Office 2k7 and 2010, so I decided to create this instead of completely derailing the discussion.
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BioTube
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Re: Office

Postby BioTube » Mon Jul 19, 2010 12:43 pm UTC

When I was in high school, my senior year we had laptops with Office 2007, complete with Ribbon; I'm very grateful for OpenOffice(of course, getting MSOffice to work under Wine's probably a headache).
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Deviltry
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Re: Office

Postby Deviltry » Mon Jul 19, 2010 2:00 pm UTC

I've chosen "Other", ie "I'm tired of people that I dislike who write M$".
Last edited by phlip on Mon Jul 19, 2010 2:07 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: I fixed your terminology for you. You can thank me later.

++$_
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Re: Office

Postby ++$_ » Mon Jul 19, 2010 10:02 pm UTC

I hate it with a passion. It is clearly objectively awful. I have literally never met anyone in person who liked it.

Currently I split my time between MS Office 2000 (the most recent version that behaves like I want it to) and Open Office 3.0 for word processing. When Office 2000 finally becomes obsolete I will switch entirely to OOO. When they inevitably make enough irritating design decisions that I give up on them too, I will switch entirely to [imath]\TeX[/imath] except to read other people's files.

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flying sheep
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Re: Office

Postby flying sheep » Mon Jul 19, 2010 11:58 pm UTC

tex all the way down. ConTeXt, to be precise.

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hintss
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Re: Office

Postby hintss » Tue Jul 20, 2010 5:24 am UTC

++$_ wrote:I hate it with a passion. It is clearly objectively awful. I have literally never met anyone in person who liked it.

Currently I split my time between MS Office 2000 (the most recent version that behaves like I want it to) and Open Office 3.0 for word processing. When Office 2000 finally becomes obsolete I will switch entirely to OOO. When they inevitably make enough irritating design decisions that I give up on them too, I will switch entirely to [imath]\TeX[/imath] except to read other people's files.

if I remember right, there's also office 2003.

that, and I use google docs unless I need a feature they haven't implemented, but I might just try TeX...

and I hate jsMath

mikazo
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Re: Office

Postby mikazo » Tue Jul 20, 2010 9:52 pm UTC

I'd say it's a love-hate relationship with Office for me. Unfortunately, I'm stuck using Microsoft Office '97 at work. Just for reference, it's 2010, over 13 years later! You can't even scroll pages and look at them at the same time. You just have to stop dragging or scroll-wheeling and see where you end up.

phider2
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Re: Office

Postby phider2 » Wed Jul 21, 2010 4:08 am UTC

I hated the ribbon when it was first introduced. I've kind of gotten used to it now, and it would be tolerable if it weren't for a few flaws. For example, it insists on switching back to the standard tab (whatever it's called) all the time, and it's really a pain to do a lot of things since they moved the options into a little, well-hidden button on the main menu (seriously, the first time I needed to change an option I looked for it for about 10 minutes before giving up and googling it).

++$_
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Re: Office

Postby ++$_ » Thu Jul 22, 2010 4:09 am UTC

hintss wrote:if I remember right, there's also office 2003.
There are some features of 2003 that bother me, so I don't use it.

I'd tell you what those features are, but I can't remember what they are right now because I don't use it. It's kind of a vicious cycle.

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MarkGyver
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Re: Office

Postby MarkGyver » Thu Jul 22, 2010 5:35 am UTC

++$_ wrote:I hate it with a passion. It is clearly objectively awful. I have literally never met anyone in person who liked it.

Although I don't like the ribbon, I find it more tolerable than the previous mess of earlier MS Office versions. I also find it more tolerable than OpenOffice's interface. However, my number 1 complaint about office programs is still nearly as applicable to the ribbon: they add so much bloat to the interface that simple stuff becomes obfuscated.

Currently, the setup that I find the most intuitive is either plain text or some sort of manual markup code (BBCode, Wiki Code, HTML, etc). I might not be able to see everything in real time, but I know exactly what the document contains and there is no extra overhead in the format.

In case anyone couldn't figure it out, I chose the "Who uses WYSIWIG office programs?" option.
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styrofoam
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Re: Office

Postby styrofoam » Fri Jul 23, 2010 5:54 pm UTC

I haven't used Office for very long at once, but it's been plenty confusing when I did.
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stands2reason
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Re: Office

Postby stands2reason » Thu Jul 29, 2010 11:47 am UTC

I don't really bother with Office that much. It's definitely not worth spending money on; it's not even worth pirating as far as I'm concerned. Honestly if I need a quick word processor I just use Google Docs, and I have OpenOffice installed on my computers so I can easily read any M$ docs I come across

swibbub
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Re: Office

Postby swibbub » Sat Jul 31, 2010 7:35 pm UTC

Hated it at first, got used to it and now have mixed feelings. When refined I can imagine it working in the future, but it's definately not perfect. Office 2010 lets you customize the ribbon though (not sure about '07), which helps a bit...

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phillipsjk
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Re: Office

Postby phillipsjk » Thu Aug 05, 2010 8:30 pm UTC

I like the WYSIWYM concept, but it is frustrating when you don't know how to edit the formatting templates.

Note the WYSIWYG paradigm has similar problems when automatic formatting (like hyperlinking URIs) is applied. In that case it it not editing the templates that is so difficult, but finding out how to disable them.
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ycc1988
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Re: Office

Postby ycc1988 » Tue Jun 26, 2012 6:20 am UTC

I'm perfectly comfortable with the ribbon and enjoy it much more than hunting through a whole tree of menu options. The ribbon isn't terribly customizable, but I never really needed it to be.

Here's how I see it:
  • Professional-grade layout management: InDesign.
  • Everyday use: Up to you.
  • Any business writing: MS Office, duh.
  • Any academic writing: LaTex.
  • Stuff to be reformatted by the publisher: also LaTex.

Nem
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Re: Office

Postby Nem » Sat Jun 30, 2012 11:55 pm UTC

I hate it, mainly because it's chunky, I don't necessarily know what the icon for an option I want looks like, and flicking through it at any speed to find what I want is a pain in the arse. Which is why I defected to LibreOffice.

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Re: Office

Postby EvanED » Sun Jul 01, 2012 12:53 am UTC

So I don't use office software very much at all. Most of the time I do, it's for Powerpoint, because it's way better than the alternatives IMO. (Except for maybe keynote, but I'm not going to spend over a thousand dollars on presentation software, even if it does come with a free computer. :-)) I do think PPT 2007 is noticeably better than previous versions, but... I didn't really care about the UI much to be honest. It's benefits came from UI changes other than the ribbon and from some of the new objects and stylings. In terms of the ribbon, I thought it did some things better and some things worse than the old system; at least overall, I didn't feel any more or less productive than I did before, nor did I either get frustrated at it or think it was awesome.

I was in my dept's Windows lab using PowerPoint 2010 for the first time this past week, and I have to say... they made a number of pretty substantial UI improvements I thought in 2010. I definitely did feel more productive in it than 2007, particularly because I was making an unusually animation-heavy presentation* that was pre-timed to a script (I'm giving a 5 minute conference talk and am using it as an excuse to play around with the format), and settings that used to be buried in a dialog are now also present in the ribbon. This drastically reduces the number of clicks I needed to change the timings.

It's nothing fundamental to the ribbon that lets you do that... after all, it's conceptually similar to, say, font selection or size, which you can do from the toolbars in the non-ribbon UI. However, I do think that 2010 has the best Powerpoint UI yet. And for reasons besides the ribbon, I also think it's huge leaps and bounds beyond Impress. (Well, at least the last time I evaluated, which was maybe 3 years ago. At that point, even PPT 2003 kicked the pants off of Impress, even to the point of spending the money for the student edition was pretty much a no-brainer considering how much I thought I'd use it. Ended up using it way less than I thought, but whatever. Still worth it, except that I later found out that I could install it on my work laptop for free. :-))

(* Purposeful animations, BTW. These fall into three categories. First is to show processes and similar develop dynamically, which is usually done pretty well with parts that fade in/out and appear/disappear. Second is to draw attention to something, e.g. by changing its color or with the "pulse" animation. (Actually I think that may be new in 2010 too, and it seems like it's quite useful.) Third is to act as a smooth transition, usually to show that, e.g. "this part of this diagram" is the same thing as "this part of that diagram", which is done nicely by having "this part" move and/or zoom into place in the second diagram. I've still never seen a purpose to most of PPT's animations, like "fly in" and stuff.)

Servant-of_Christ
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Re: Office

Postby Servant-of_Christ » Fri Jul 27, 2012 4:01 am UTC

I've been interested in Tex, how hard is it to learn? will it take a long time?

Iranon
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Re: Office

Postby Iranon » Fri Jul 27, 2012 5:16 am UTC

For structured documents consisting mostly of text it's well worth it: fairly easy, eliminates many formatting headaches, and may lead to better work habits (especially if you didn't make a distinction between appearance and structure before).
Introduce a high ratio of nontext content and some people will have a hard time with anything that isn't WYSIWYG.
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Re: Office

Postby EvanED » Fri Jul 27, 2012 5:38 am UTC

TLDR version: If you've got the right mindset (i.e. not being put off by editing markup in a text editor then compiling), the learning curve is really not bad at all. I kind of hate Latex, but I also think it's the least-bad solution out there for a lot of writing, and I wouldn't really even dream of using anything else by choice for, say, a research paper.

First, make sure you go LaTeX and not plain TeX. (And like C -> C++, knowing plain TeX is neither a prerequsite for LaTeX nor particularly helpful for 99% of LaTeX stuff.) (This is the religious wars forum, but I suspect that is pretty uncontroversial. We'll see I guess. :-))

Second, like Iranon said, it depends a bit on what you're doing. Basic stuff is actually pretty easy once you get beyond the idea of a non-WYSIWYG editor. (If you've edited HTML, say, you'll be right at home, though of course the syntax is entirely different.) Intermediate stuff you'll have to do some searching around for packages and stuff, but there's almost always something that does about what you want.

It's only once in a blue moon that you run into something that is really legitimately difficult to do. That pretty much always involves something involving layout. TeX's biggest strength is that it allows you to separate structure from presentation, but somewhat of a corollary is that it can sometimes be kinda shitty at presentation. (For instance, I often find how it does float placements to be pretty opaque and it can occasionally be frustrating to get them into reasonable places, let alone good ones.)

I'm not much of a fan of the syntax, and there are some things that are downright bad from a modern standpoint, but you really need to be treating it as a programming language in parts before you hit those. My other big gripe is with the tex/pdftex/latex/pdflatex/etc. executable themselves. The error messages are often terrible, and I have on many occasions hit errors where it might as well have told me "something is wrong somewhere".

webzter_again
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Re: Office

Postby webzter_again » Mon Aug 13, 2012 9:24 pm UTC

Related to Office (but not the Ribbon discussion), when I need to write documentation these days I'm turning to Sphinx more than anything. It creates pretty enough HTML (my primary use case) and it can output decent PDFs via LaTeX. I'm fairly noobish on the editor front but I tend to stick to either poorly using vim or notepad++.

jeorgun
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Re: Office

Postby jeorgun » Sun Oct 14, 2012 6:41 am UTC

I use LaTeX for all my `word processing' needs. and wouldn't use MS Office were I to use a WYSIWYG editor, but I still think the ribbon is a pretty awesome UI concept. Which should I vote for? :P

WizenedEE
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Re: Office

Postby WizenedEE » Sat Oct 20, 2012 8:09 pm UTC

I use LaTeX when possible, but my school only has MS Office, and I do like the ribbon interface. However, it does seem somewhat silly that, with the monitors my school has, nearly 50% of the hoizontal space is wasted --- shouldn't the ribbon go on the side?

It also occurred to me that solidworks 2010 has this same sort of interface, and I love that.

Derek
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Re: Office

Postby Derek » Sat Oct 20, 2012 8:11 pm UTC

WizenedEE wrote:I use LaTeX when possible, but my school only has MS Office, and I do like the ribbon interface. However, it does seem somewhat silly that, with the monitors my school has, nearly 50% of the hoizontal space is wasted --- shouldn't the ribbon go on the side?

I completely agree, and that was one of my first complaints about the ribbon. With the widespread use of widescreen monitors, but the primarily vertical nature of document editing, it would make more sense to have the ribbon on the side of the screen instead of the top. Much how the pre-Vista MS Paint worked (which ironically switched to a ribbon).

I don't know if it's possible to move the ribbon, I don't think I've ever tried, but older versions of office were very flexible about where you put toolbars, so it's worth trying.

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Re: Office

Postby Copper Bezel » Sun Oct 21, 2012 5:27 am UTC

Just minimize the ribbon. It's still just as brilliant that way, but also takes the space of a single menu bar.

And I actually appreciate that it's horizontal, because a vertical ribbon would make having two documents up very awkward.
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freezeblade
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Re: Office

Postby freezeblade » Mon Oct 22, 2012 8:37 pm UTC

WizenedEE wrote:solidworks


Off topic a bit, but back about...mumble mumble...years ago when I was starting my architectural degree, I had a modeling class that wanted us to use solidworks, couldn't stand it. I dropped it for learning the brand new sketch-up, back before google bought it (it was still pay back then, did my project with the free 30 hour trial).

Slightly more on topic, I dislike the ribbon in office, but not as much as when the ribbon found it's way into AutoCAD. Thank fuck there is still an "autocad classic" view so I can make it look like R14 still (and I can turn off all the menu-bars, no toolbar hunting for me thanks).
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