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Thread: I Hate OpenOffice

  1. #1
    Mentor cga's Avatar
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    I Hate OpenOffice

    Well, maybe hate is too strong a word, and I should say that I have a problem with all big, overly complex, WYSIWYMG systems like this.

    OpenOffice is just incompatible enough with M$ Office to force me back into my XP partition on the laptop for work related documents. Not that that is really OOo's fault, but since I can't use it for work, I have no use for it at all, as I do not use such things for personal projects where a text editor and groff are more than capable of out-doing any "word processor".

    Word processors are to text as food processors are to food.

  2. #2

    Re:I Hate OpenOffice

    Yep. When I have to write a paper, it's a no-win situation.

    OOo usually lets me get the job done, but it's probably the most awkward thing I've ever had to use in my entire life. All its features are obfuscated and hidden away under a poorly designed menu system. And as you said, it's just incompatible enough with Word so that you can't easily work with others (though 2.0 is a HUGE improvement in this respect).

    Abiword is my preferred squeeze when it comes to writing papers. It works very well for papers that aren't over 10 pages in length, and use only the styles Heading 1, Heading2, and Heading 3. Anything more complex than that, and Abi crashes and burns. It maybe opens 30% of the .doc files I have kicking around on my computer, and its feature set is anemic. Maybe given a lot more time and a lot more resources abi could grow to something really nice to use, but for now I'm stuck using it for short stories and lab writeups.

    I'd love to be using TeX for all my word processing needs...it suits my work style. When I program, it's vim and nothing but vim where a lot of others prefer MS visual studio and Eclipse. Similarly, when I'm doing math processing it's Octave all the way...plain simple interface. A lot of people love the Mathcad and Matlab GUI version where you can often point and click your way to a solution, but it just doesn't feel right to me. I'd love to say the same thing for word processing. but unfortunately I'm no good at all with the tools. Things that take me literally 30 seconds in OOo/Abi have taken entire days bumbling around with LaTeX trying to figure out how to do it. Maybe some day I'll set aside some time to learn.

  3. #3
    Mentor cga's Avatar
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    Re:I Hate OpenOffice

    TeX is terrific, but I rather prefer Groff. It is a much trimmer system and much easier to work with. It can also output formated plain text, which is very nice, and generates clean, compliant HTML output- something no Word Processor can do. You also don't have to fight with escape characters like you do in LaTeX. Groff uses simple two letter tags, like TL or LP vice the more complex TeX way.

    Check some cool information on http://www.neverland.ch/groff and be sure to download "The Groff and Friends Howto". You can learn to write a basic report in about 10 minutes time.

    BTW- I am by no means a Groff guru- but I can create just about any nicely formated document I want from having read the though the documents on the referenced web site and a few hours practice.


  4. #4
    Mentor coltrane's Avatar
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    Re:I Hate OpenOffice

    Does Oo have the ability to address labels for envelopes (efficiently) yet? Thats the only thing Im waiting on, other than that, I dont have a problem with it. Well, since I stopped using the unstable version anyway.

  5. #5
    Mentor cga's Avatar
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    Re:I Hate OpenOffice

    Tyr_7BE,

    Wow- Abiword is really nice, and may just be perfect for my simple word processing needs. My days of writing complex, academic papers is long gone so, realistically, my need to typeset documents is largely gone too. These days I seldom write anything over two or three pages in length and lightly formated in any case. Abiword works. Plus, it feels like a native app, nicely integrated with Gnome.

    So thanks.

  6. #6
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    Re:I Hate OpenOffice

    [quote author=cga link=board=2;threadid=10580;start=0#msg95241 date=1122232727]
    Abiword works. Plus, it feels like a native app, nicely integrated with Gnome.
    [/quote]

    Thats the thing I don't get -- why isn't GNOME fitted like SuSE did with its KDE version? The SuSE KDE version looks sweet. It integrates perfectly with KDE. Why hasn't Red Hat or Sun (two pimps of GNOME mind you) done that for GNOME yet?

    The little things that keep my mind afloat.

  7. #7

    Re:I Hate OpenOffice

    [quote author=Schotty link=board=2;threadid=10580;start=0#msg95245 date=1122234019]

    Thats the thing I don't get -- why isn't GNOME fitted like SuSE did with its KDE version? The SuSE KDE version looks sweet. It integrates perfectly with KDE. Why hasn't Red Hat or Sun (two pimps of GNOME mind you) done that for GNOME yet?

    The little things that keep my mind afloat.
    [/quote]

    You mean OpenOffice? It's been done, but not terribly well. Pixmapped gtk themes and widget patterns don't show up. The file manager has been integrated, which is kind of nice, and a lot of the widgets are drawn in gtk, but it feels like something that's 75% Gnome, 25% poorly done UI. All the shortcut keys are different from the rest of Gnome. The preferences dialogue is horribly cluttered. General disregard for HIG, etc etc... Basically, they've taken OpenOffice and made it act like GTK when possible.

    OO2 draws its widgets in GTK2 if you have the right plugin, but a lot of other issues like shortcut keys and behaviour still exist. No matter how hard people work at it, it will never integrate quite like Abi does.

    I just wish Abi had a few more features so I could use it in day-to-day tasks. I'm thinking maybe Abi 2.4 will be my "OO2-killer", especially if it has the capability to save to odt files, but it remains to be seen.

  8. #8
    Member AljoshaNL's Avatar
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    Re:I Hate OpenOffice

    I would prefer Corel WordPerfect, but OpenOffice is OK I think :

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