June 25, 2005 by Allen George
I use it everyday and I’ve never mentioned how much I like it. OpenOffice is a full-featured office suite that’s a credible alternative to Microsoft Office. It’s freely available and I use the 1.9.x builds which form the basis for v2.0.
I use OpenOffice Writer frequently. While Word may outclass Writer in terms of sheer feature set, I find that for my day to day use, I’ve never missed Word. I used to think that I required Word, but I’ve realized that nothing could be further from the truth. To most people tools like Word and Writer are computerized typewriters and they’re used like that. However, I have to admit, putting in the time to understand features like Writer’s Stylist (F11) pays off big dividends.
My biggest complaints so far are loading time and the UI. Writer still takes longer to load than Word. I also think that both Word and Writer’s usability teams should rethink the program UIs. At the very least they should ask themselves: “What do university students want this program to do?”