Do I really need Office X ???? Apple Works okay???


Well....I have been thinking about this question for over a week already.

As some people here already know that I only deal with graphics and video related stuff and don't bother touching "business" stuff.

I have Office 98 (got it from a big clearence sales) and am using it just to type resume and receive guidelines from people. If people send me a complex or new word format I usually tell them to save the file as an older word file or just the RTF files......

Now moving to OSX......I really don't want to deal with Classic. I already paid a big chunk of money on my OSX compliant 3D apps....and once Illustrator, Photoshop, AfterEffects go native all my remaining cash will be going for the upgrade and I will have nothing left for the Office X upgrade.

I am wondering.....will Apple Works do the trick? I have Apple Works which is bundled with my dad's iMac and I can grab it from him. But I am not too sure how compatible this app with all those WORD documents (especially to those WORD documents with "fancy" layers and text boxes).

Any idea????

Thanks :)
If what you have works for you and you dont feel any need for the "updates" then dont get it :p

It costs A LOT! (well for what it does :p)

I am keeping with what I have till my dept gets a site licence :p

Well teh way I think about it is this:
Office 98, or 2000 works well for me now, it does what I want it to do. I do not need anything special that office X will gimme, if it has something special.

By the time I DO need a replacement for office 98 it will be high time to get an OS X version, in which case the purchase is justifieable. Furthermore classic in the future will be a once in a while occurance, if at all, because all apps will be X native. Now I use classic everyday when I use X just because 90% of my apps are classic.
Actually AppleWorks should be able to read and write most Office docs (specially Office 97 format if it is coming from a Windows system). I do have a copy of Office 98, but only use it on a few occations.

But this brings up an important point though. Why do we have to pay so much money for apps just to read docs from them? Why pay $900 for QuarkXPress if you don't actually create anything in it? Or $500 for Office v.X to read Word or PowerPoint docs from Windows users when you don't make docs in them yourself.

I think any app that cost over $50 should have to follow the "Acrobat" model. That is to say, there should be a free reader for people who don't create with that app. I have paid for the full version of Acrobat, and the upgrades from 3 to 4, and soon 4 to 5 (when it is Mac OS X compatible), because I use it to create documents. But why should I have to pay for Illustrator, Freehand, QuarkXPress, CorelDRAW (though they now have a free LE version), and others, just to read documents sent to me from other people.

In the last two years I have gotten 1, and only 1 PowerPoint doc sent to me. 5 Word docs that I couldn't open with my favorite Word version, 5.1a. And a couple Excel spreedsheets in all that time. It was NOT worth $500 to me just to be able to open and print or read those docs.

Anyway, AppleWorks 6.2.1 works great for most everything I need it for, and if you need to buy the full version of 6 (if you can only get 5 from your Dad), it is running between $50 and $75 these days. Any version of 6 can be upgraded to 6.2.1 and run native on Mac OS X.
If I'm not mistaken, Office 98 and Office 2001 for Macintosh data file formats are identical. The only difference between the two office suites are features/interface changes. I have both suites and I use Office 2001 very frequently, especially M$ Word and M$ Excel. Being a chemist who must work with reports and data manipulation, I am sort of forced to use M$ products since "the world" uses these products for the most part. Excel provides some quick and dirty data manipulation due to its features, but there are serious limits to the accuracy of Excel. It is forbidden for use by the pharmaceutical industry for any calculations because of its limited computational accuracy. It uses some shortcuts with linear algebra when computing least-squares and a few others that I won't mention. Excel is business software, so, basically the first two decimal places of any number are accurate but anything else after those can be junk, you never know what is accurate and what isn't.

If you don't use M$ Office very often, or just use it for compatibility with the Windoze world, I would recommend not upgrading unless you absolutely MUST upgrade. I don't intend on upgrading unless I'm forced to upgrade. Why give M$ more $$$ for a program you already have. The features certainly aren't going to change appreciably, and .NET is supposed to be around the corner anyway. Big deal if it takes you an extra 2 minutes to load Classic, go get some coffee or a snack and come back to the computer.

My sentiments exactly :)
When you install windoze (well at least in the past this held true) a word and excel viewer were included... this should be done for the mac too, as well as powerpoint.

The last time I created a powerpoint presentation: 4 years ago

Last time I used excel (for non-work matter @ home): 1 year ago (and this was to help a friend...well to do her homework lol :p)

Last Time I used excel at work: Last week (but since I dont pay for it no prob:p)

Last time I used Access (on a PC): Last year when I did that HW for a friend

Last time I used M$ word (at home): 1 month ago.

So I have no serious need to upgrade from what I am currently using and probably wont feel the need to upgrade anyhow.

$500 is quite A LOT of money to just throw away.. I would prefer to buy something constructive, or something that apeases my hobbying interests than give it to M$.

I got by for years with ClarisWorks - in fact I preferred it well over Office. When they changed the name to AppleWorks I stuck with it for a while. I think as a suite, AppleWorks is far more "seamlessly intergrated" (the most over used and now meaningless term in computing) than Office ever was or will be.

AppleWorks should allow you to save your resume as a Word file (probably rtf is best) so those who you want to hire you will be able to read your stellar resume. However, there still are some funky format and font size issues between Mac and PC. I did my resume in Word 2000 for Mac, but the page breaks were different on the PC Word version of the file. I didn't do anything fancy (times new roman, 1 " margins...) and it was a little embarrassing, so although you really shouldn't have to do this kind of crap, preview any important docs on a PC before you send them away.

By the way, I had AppleWorks but it crashed constantly on OS 9 - now I can't find the darn CD so I can upgrade to the OSX version!!! It's here somewhere!
It's all boils down to: "How much do you interact with PC users?"

In my major, I have to trade and submit all of my work in Word *.doc format. It's REQUIRED by the university that all documents are saved in MS Word. I tried using AppleWorks for the first few weeks this semester .. but it wasn't hacking it. In fact I lost an entire paper grade because my file was unreadable for some reason by the TA's Windows Word 2000.

I had since switched to Office:mac 2001 and everything has worked FINE. Right now I'm using the Word v.X preview from Microsoft and that's working perfectly, too.

As a stand alone wordprocessor, AppleWorks was pretty good. It wasn't familiar to it having been a MS Office user for ... Jesus probably 6 or more years. But I'm sure it would suit you fine IF you don't have to swap files with Windows lemmings.
... i'd say stick with apple works... office is incredibly expensive and i really don't see the point of it ... also, staying microsoft-free is a pretty cool concept ... :)

as racerX says there ought to be a reader... i've got office on my classic drive so i can read word docs, but to paraphrase the admiral:

The last time I created a powerpoint presentation: never

Last time I used excel (for non-work matter @ home): never

Last Time I used excel at work: never

Last time I used Access (on a PC): never

Last time I used M$ word (at home): so long ago i can hardly remember, after all, textedit reads .doc stuff and even windoze can read .rtf ... :)

in my opinion, apple works does the job very well, it looks and feels cool and... hey, it's apple!
He he ;)
To have the universoty DICTATE what format you use, especially a proprietary one like .doc is immoral, or unjust at the very least. DO they at least pay for teh damn software ?

I can imagine if some university said "evey student must use an IRIX machine and submit project in IRIX native format" people would be in a ***** uproar!
send people pdf files
get them to send you pdf
more often than not you dont need to edit the file to get just read it.
At least in OSX is easy to make a pdf file

That way no embarrassing resumes formats
The one thing I would love to see come out of the case against Microsoft is the government forcing them to make open source the proprietary documents formats. Mind you, I would not just want this for Microsoft alone... Quark is a guilty as anyone of using their monopoly to take advantage of consumers.

If Nothing else, we should first work towards a universal internet format. HTML has been poluted by proprietary code from both Netscape and Explorer, and the W3 Consortium just stood by and let it happen. Microsoft is quickly working to make as many web sites as possible Windows/IE only. Unix/Macintosh Users did go out of there way to not let Windows users use the Web back when X-Windows and Mac versions of Mosaic were all that was out there for browsers. NSCA ended up making a Windows version later on. It sure seems like all other platforms are inclusive while Windows is working very hard to be exclusive.
I know of M$ proprietary HTML (which I dont use..or at least hope I dont :eek: ) but what did nescape put in as proprietary ? 9well other than the blink tag) ?:confused:

Any examples ?:rolleyes: (I am sure netscape is a culprit too but I seem to see more M$ than netscape)
This one is easy:use Office. Like it or not, it's more or less standard now. Unless you simply do not communicate with any other computer users, it is the most pragmatic option.

The next issue is whether to upgrade or not. Most people will not NEED the new X features (me included), but may want it just for the new look and to avoid Classic altogether (again, me included). If money is an issue, I might recommend just buying a gob of cheap RAM and using Office 98 in Classic mode.

Drop Appleworks completely IMHO. This has nothing to do with whether or not it's a decent program, I'm sure it is. In my experience though, it's just not worth the constant never-ending nuisance of having to save files certain ways for certain people, etc. as well as request that they do the same for you.


Someone complained about an "Acrobat" approach to the Office suite. There are in fact "viewers" for virtually all Office products . These are free and downloadable from Microsoft. Problem solved.
i think Word is overfeatured and as such commands an unnecessary a price premium.
I know the suite is called office but many private users need to transfer formated text.
Even word 5.1 had too many features.

Making programs conplex is just a way to sell more- like upsizing cars.
It is always ironic that popular cars keep getting bigger with each update till they hardly resemble the original winning formula.

Basically Word/Office is too expensive for what is needed
Originally posted by Aussie John
send people pdf files
get them to send you pdf
more often than not you dont need to edit the file to get just read it.
At least in OSX is easy to make a pdf file

That way no embarrassing resumes formats

I seriously envy you if you tell people you know to send you .pdf files and they don't go "huh?"

one friend asked me to read his stuff (and we are in university... people are supposed to know some stuffs about computer) and he sends it... I asked him what format it is in and... well... he had no idea what I'm talking about.

If I told him to send a pdf... let's just say I can go to his place, print it, and go home before he gets it done....
If you send a resume to somebody and don't know whether he uses a version of Word (or whatever) that displays your resume (or whatever) exactly the way you want it to be: Use PDF. In Mac OS X you can save as PDF any document you create. Just go to the print dialog and hit 'Preview'. You can then save that preview as a PDF file that shows *the same* wherever you send it to (unless they read it on a Palm or Win CE thingie, but then they know...) :)

If you need to *receive* Office files, right now your only chance is that it might open fine in AppleWorks. Well, it won't. It will have display problems for certain features and line-/pagebreaks will definitely not look the same as intended.

If you don't care about that, AppleWorks is fine, else right now you need Office.

But SEND your stuff using PDF.
I;ve seen people who are anal about that though.
If they tell you send an M$ word file and you send something else, even though it might be a PDF they will bitch and complain and lower your grade...

I would not want a prof like that :p We would have serious probs ;)
Originally posted by mindbend
Someone complained about an "Acrobat" approach to the Office suite. There are in fact "viewers" for virtually all Office products . These are free and downloadable from Microsoft. Problem solved.

Hold on one moment please. I do believe we are on a Mac forum, and the only time a "Problem" is "solved" is when there is a Mac solution. I don't want to use Office, so I can have free viewers if I move to Windows? Where is the solution in that? I work with publications firms that live buy QuarkXPress (which is too expensive to begin with), and need to (from time to time) open Word formated docs. If there is a way I can get them a viewer for free, I would surely like to here about it. The only alternative you have proposed is either get Office (at about $500) or a PC for one of the free readers (at least $500, and not counting getting it to talk with an all Mac network).

Office offers NO features that can not be found in QuarkXPress, and Office can't do what QuarkXPress does, so it is an expensive item to have taking up disk space and collecting dust in a closet. At least I'm not forced to use a different platform in order to read pdf files. I can read them on almost every OS I can think of. I can't see the same about Word (even with Star Office and Abi Word being out there). The overall problem again becomes using a format owned by Microsoft.

If you can find viewer for Word and Excel for Mac on Microsoft's site, I would love to know where they are.