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Nihilism, Futurist Traditionalism and Conservationism

Open Office blows

27 06 11 - 14:25

People love to bitch about those who do something right.

While Microsoft Office is far from perfect, there is no easy substitute for it. Nothing comes close, and nothing comes close to Microsoft Word for all-around usefulness.

You'd think that from the way people talk, it would be easy to make a program better than Microsoft Word. Yet... we have lots of free alternatives, and none that come even remotely close.

Every time I say this, some idiot pipes up with, "But haven't you tried Open Office?"

Yes, yes. Everyone has tried Open Office. Somehow, computer science geeks think it's great; everyone with any actual experience in writing long documents knows it's an unstable turd.

"But I've never had any problems?"

So... what do you write? Long docs, formal docs?

"Yeah, I wrote a few papers, some recipes, a letter and I've got my science fiction novel in the works! I'm up to chapter 2.5!"

OK, then. Never really tested the software. That's why you like it: you like the idea of it (free Microsoft Office replacement, oh wow) but you have not paid attention to the reality, which doesn't live up to that.

Now others are discovering this too:

The IT department of the city of Geneva in Switzerland is about to stop its four-year use of open source email clients and OpenOffice, an open source suite of office productivity tools, and revert to the previous, vendor dependent solutions.

According to the 20 Mins news item, the city's IT department, the Department of Urban Environment and Security (DEUS) explained that the decision to migrate back to proprietary IT solutions followed a review that concluded that replacing OpenOffice was the best solution in terms of efficiency and sustainability." - OSOR

Open Office flaked out on them, and so they're replacing it with something that costs money. When you pay people $50 an hour or so, suddenly that $500 program is not all that expensive.

After all, they've probably spent many nights trying to hammer documents into working shape using Open Office, only to find a lack of technical support, an application that's broken, developers who are hostile to investigating questions and blame the user, etc.

Remember this the next time some brightly helpful idiot recommends "Just install Open Office, problem solved!" to you.

seven comments

And, it's slow as hell to start up, even with the stupid "quick launch" program that stays running all the time. John (Email ) - 27-06-’11 14:45
Geek of the Week
Open Office, Linux and most free softwares are nothing more than a bolshevik trick. Geek of the Week - 27-06-’11 15:22
Most computer geeks I know use and encourage LaTeX. I haven't been able to make the transition, but I know there are many people who successfully write long documents with it.

OpenOffice is usually what they tell you to try when you tell them you're not willing to use a non-WYSIWYG editor. Word. (Email ) - 27-06-’11 15:48
Lemon Glow
I work for a company that acquired another company back in February. I went up to the newly acquired location to help with the transition and they were using Open Office (surprise surprise that the former owner was cheap...he was Indian).

Long story short, OpenOffice made everything take twice as long to complete (if not impossible). Lemon Glow - 27-06-’11 18:51
college bra
I work a summer job at an inner tubing company and the Indians are the worst. When they get to the exit point on the river they extend their canes out towards us employees and say "Pull" in a subdued voice of distant, ungainly mythology instead of getting out of the tube using their own fuckin adult bodies and walking to the stairs. Indians are too dreamy and weird for the present-tense ass 'n' titties bluntness of public America, and to make matters worse for me I think the caste system lingers on in their treatment of service industry employees. Also they smell like water that's been sitting in the same spot for like 6 thousand years, the rawest wiffs of geometric Gertrude miasma college bra - 27-06-’11 22:02
Aspie fag
But I always use Open Office on my Mac! Aspie fag - 28-06-’11 06:08
mac user
open source is gay. that's why i use mac. they have the best word editor mac user - 28-06-’11 12:43

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