free and almost free office type software

Discussion in 'Dell' started by RnR, Sep 21, 2007.

  1. RnR

    RnR Guest

    If I'm not mistaken IBM is giving their Open Office away for free and
    Microsoft is selling their newest Office suite software to students
    for $60. I don't remember all the details so you'll have to Google
    for them.
    RnR, Sep 21, 2007
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  2. RnR

    Sudohnim Guest

    IBM has decided to offer their own free open source derivative of Open
    Office (more properly known as the project) which it
    is calling Lotus Symphony. Lotus Symphony is in beta:

    Note: You have to register before download (WTF IBM). If nothing
    else, this is good because some IBM developers will be contributing to
    the codebase.

    Another derivative of actually the parent so to speak...
    is StarOffice which anyone can download for $69.95:

    Then of course there is proper... free software, open
    source, no registration required, most definitely worth taking for an
    extended test spin:

    Microsoft Office isn't worth linking to ;-)
    Sudohnim, Sep 21, 2007
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  3. RnR

    Journey Guest

    I don't understand -- what is the difference between IBM's Open Office
    and the one at

    Didn't IBM at one time have a word processor called Word Pro?
    Journey, Sep 22, 2007
  4. RnR

    Journey Guest

    I bought MS Office 2007 Enterprise for about $79 as a student. I need
    to know it to help people in one of my volunteer roles. I do like One
    Note 2007 (but not prior versions) quite a bit. I wish I had kept up
    with MS Access because now it has a multi-valued column capability
    that does away with the complexity of having an association for a
    many-to-many relationship. That could be very powerful for
    applications such as David Allen's Getting Things Done methodology
    that uses contexts of tasks, because a task often can be assigned to
    many contexts. I use a program called List Pro 5 instead which is
    very simple to use, and separate the contexts with commas so I can
    still filter by searching for the context string like "errand",
    "computer", "phone".

    I like the Atlantis word processor but the developers are arrogant. It
    doesn't support tables, and in threads asking for that feature they
    say things like "We don't owe you anything" rather than being more
    customer focused and friendly. OK, if you don't owe your customers
    anything, then maybe your customers will pay nothing.

    The thing Atlantis has going for it is that you can have a right pane
    with all your open documents, and it reopens them the next time you
    open the program. I am hoping to find this capability in another
    product, but so far only a program called Poly Edit does it but it
    does it poorly.

    Text editors, however, frequently do that. NoteTab Pro is a great
    program that many people don't know about. I prefer it to TextPad or
    Ultra Edit. Text editors, although the simplicity and minimalism
    appeals to me, just don't cut it. With MS Word or Open Office, I can
    easily apply Heading Styles 1,2, and 3 with Ctrl+Alt+number or
    Ctrl+number respectively. It's very easy to crank out a great
    document just using those and bullet points.

    Some companies will give you a free or reduced license to their
    software if you just ask, have a good reason for asking, and agree to
    provide them with a honest review that they can use in marketing. I
    have licenses to really powerful and expensive programs that I
    couldn't afford otherwise.

    Getting back to Open Office, I am trying to transition to it. A big
    part of me though wants to stay up with the MS Word object model for
    macros or other programming. A bigger part of me says give it up --
    do you really want to clutter your mind with object models when there
    is real life to be lived!? Resounding no -- but being a programmer /
    database analyst / systems analyst / web developer still beckons to me
    from time to time until I come to my senses.
    Journey, Sep 22, 2007
  5. RnR

    Journey Guest

    There are two exceptions, if I would want to focus on something for
    programming. One is when the iPhone OS / iPod OS becomes a
    development platform (I think it will happen, there's a limit to
    web-based interfaces). The other would be Windows Mobile, but I'd
    rather program for an Apple device than support the evil Monopoly.

    While Apple executes superbly, Palm is totally baffling with its level
    of incompetance. Palm needs a management change yesterday. Is there
    a reason why a Palm PDA doesn't have a 30gig hard drive by now? Yeah,
    Palm incompetance, lack of vision. They STILL have their Vista
    version of Palm Desktop in beta! Really though I have secondary
    motives -- I want the stock to be decimated so it would be a good
    turnaround investment :)

    Apple stock hasn't disappointed -- still has a lot of upside because
    the new iPods will decimate any competition this holiday season, Apple
    is increasing market share of computers, and the iPhone hit the mark
    perfectly. I see 200 by the end of Q1.
    Journey, Sep 22, 2007
  6. Still does:

    "IBM® Lotus® SmartSuite®, the award-winning office suite,
    features these applications: Lotus 1-2-3®, the spreadsheet that
    started it all; Word Pro®, the word processor for today's
    Internet centered-world; Lotus Organizer Release 5.04, the
    world's leading personal information manager; Freelance
    Graphics®, the presentation graphics package for everyday
    communication; and Approach®, the relational database your whole
    team can use. IBM Lotus 1-2-3 and IBM Lotus Organizer are also
    available as stand-alone products"

    The old standbys, Word Perfect (now Corel WordPerfect Office and
    includes a spreadsheet, presentation program, data base program;
    and dBase are still out there too in addition to Lotus 1-2-3.

    Plus ca change ...
    Ogden Johnson III, Sep 22, 2007
  7. another low cost alternative to microsoft office is sun's star office. and
    it offers file format compatibility with microsoft office. not sure if the
    others do. and you don't have to be a student or teacher or large volume
    enterprise customer to qualify for the low pricing.
    Christopher Muto, Sep 22, 2007
  8. RnR

    Journey Guest

    Is Star Office related to Open Office?
    Journey, Sep 22, 2007
  9. RnR

    Journey Guest

    Nevermind -- obviously this is the kind of thing that a Google search
    would handle very well.
    Journey, Sep 22, 2007
  10. RnR

    RnR Guest

    Journey, just curious why you like NoteTab Pro over the other 2 more
    popular names?
    RnR, Sep 22, 2007
  11. RnR

    Journey Guest

    I recommend trying their freeware version. Here are some reasons why
    I like NoteTab Pro:

    - Better editing functions. For example, if you copy quoted text
    with the ">>" or ">" at the beginning, like on newsgroups, there is a
    function to add or remove those

    - The file operations on the tabs are superior. You can delete a
    document from the tab (right click, delete) instead of always having
    to do it through Windows Explorer like most programs.

    - The clipbook libraries are easy to create, and easy to use.

    - The Pro version (not that expensive) allows creation of what they
    call outline files, but it's really a text file that has many text
    files inside it accessed through a header (like a table of contents).
    You name a header, and click it in the left hand column. You can move
    them around and create many more.

    Not the best description -- it's worth checking out. There are many
    already-defined clip libraries. When I was briefly a Java student and
    prgrammer, I would define sets of code to do a certain function (like
    read from a text file) that I could just click on. I tried to
    continually put reausable code in a clip library and I was able to
    program in Java much faster than other students who had to keep
    reinventing the wheel.

    Some other neat programs you might want to check out RnR are:

    Info Select at


    Mind Manager at


    The Journal at

    It would be great to know what software favorites others have but I
    don't know if it would be too much off topic here.
    Journey, Sep 22, 2007
  12. RnR

    RnR Guest

    Thanks Journey. I use to use Textpad a lot. I liked Textpad because
    when I first got it, it was one of the first I found that allowed me
    to cut and paste vertical columns which I had a need for then. I
    think more editors do this now??? . Nowadays I tend to use Word 95%
    of the time and Textpad most of the rest.

    I'll take a look at NoteTab Pro later but right now my need for an
    editor is small and probably not that demanding so likely any recent
    version of any editor will do <grin>.

    Appreciate your informative answer.
    RnR, Sep 22, 2007
  13. RnR

    Journey Guest

    The advantages of Textpad if I remember correctly:

    If you have multiple files open they can show as a list in the left

    Textpad is also unique in that if you use the autoindent feature, when
    it screen wraps, it wraps to the indent, rather than wrapping to the
    beginning of the next line. Very nice for taking structured notes
    that format nicely.

    Finally, Textpad worked well with Java -- in fact I think it allowed
    running simple Java apps within it, so it was nice in the beginning.
    For Java though, jEdit is preferable.
    Journey, Sep 22, 2007
  14. RnR

    Michael Arm Guest

    The journal is a great package allowing both a daily journal(s) and
    notebook(s) format. I use if for day to day tracking of work
    accomplished and the notebooks are great for collecting all sorts of
    information in one place. You can create links say between some
    accomplishment in the Calendar and the details in a notebook for

    Michael Arm, Sep 23, 2007
  15. RnR

    Journey Guest

    Yes, it's a great program, which is far more useful than one would
    think by its name. It can have unlimited, nexted, calendar and
    notebook entries and is great for logging and project management.

    I had proposed the recently added feature of multiple entries / day
    and beta tested it. That's one example of how I get free licenses for
    programs -- help the developer with ideas, help the developer test,
    and provide the developer with reviews and sound bytes to help market

    I did pay for The Journal though, but maybe will get a free upgrade to
    version 5 when it comes out :)

    This is the kind of program I would like to know about -- gems that
    someone may know about that are extremely useful. The Journal doesn't
    have much mind share -- it would have a greater user base if people
    knew what it is capable of.
    Journey, Sep 23, 2007
  16. RnR

    Journey Guest

    Hi RnR,

    I am trying TextPad 5.0, and I like it. I like the ability to save
    workspaces. You had mentioned verticle column selection and that's a
    good feature. Also, I like how the auto-indent retains the indent
    when word-wrapping.

    I may use it to take notes in meetings. With NoteTab I have defined
    Super Write shortcuts so my typing speed is much faster. Basically it
    changes the text as I type when it recognizes a string.

    Super Write ( ) is great. Short vowels are
    omitted, and there are other rules such as a crossed t = th.


    tos = those
    tr = their
    ts = this

    Now is the good time to come to the aid of your country


    nw s t gd tim tu cm tu t ad o r cntry

    When I type with NoteTab using SuperWrite taking notes in a meeting is
    a breeze.

    So if TextPad has auto-replace as you type then I might try that if I
    can transfer my NoteTab definition file to TextPad.
    Journey, Sep 24, 2007
  17. RnR

    Tony Harding Guest

    You'll note that Herr Gates wasn't invited to speak at Columbia. ;)
    Tony Harding, Sep 25, 2007
  18. RnR

    Michael Arm Guest

    I have gotten way more benefit from it than the $39 i paid for it.
    David will probably read this and give me a special price like $99
    when 5.0 comes out <G>.

    Michael Arm, Sep 26, 2007
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