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Office Software Thread, Open Office v MS Office in Technical; Originally Posted by ZeroHour Apple are worse, nothing other then a mac opens those damn files. They are FAR worse ...
  1. #16

    tmcd35's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ZeroHour View Post
    Apple are worse, nothing other then a mac opens those damn files. They are FAR worse then MS now for lockin's
    Possibly, but even iWork can open and save Word/Excel/Powerpoint files. Less face it MS-Works, iWork, OpenOffice, Google Apps, and more besides, can all open MS formated documents. So why worry about open standards, we have a standard.

    It's one of the reasons we can consider switching to OpenOffice without causing compatibility problems.

    OpenOffice also as the advantage of being truely multi-platform. Mac/Linux/Windows it's all the same version of the same software.

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    Quote Originally Posted by tmcd35 View Post
    Less face it MS-Works, iWork, OpenOffice, Google Apps, and more besides, can all open MS formated documents. So why worry about open standards, we have a standard.

    which standard .doc 97,xp 2000/2007 ? none of them seem to have any discernible degree of compatibility in different versions of office. besides, The old .doc is now legacy. MS have moved on, they have implemented their own version of .odf in their docx implementation soon they will support .odf out of the box. At some point they will drop .doc altogether.
    The industry standard for the education industry is odf. Even MS are using it now. (see the article I linked to in the 2nd post)

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    Don't forget that if you require a good level of support for VB and such then this is lacking in Open office as much as any other free open source alternative unless this has changed...

  4. #19

    ZeroHour's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tmcd35 View Post
    Possibly, but even iWork can open and save Word/Excel/Powerpoint files.
    Yeh I just love the fact that Apple are worse now for locked in office formats but like you say at least everyone has a common format and its MS office LOL

    Quote Originally Posted by tmcd35 View Post
    It's one of the reasons we can consider switching to OpenOffice without causing compatibility problems.
    OpenOffice also as the advantage of being truely multi-platform. Mac/Linux/Windows it's all the same version of the same software.
    One of the best things tbh about it. Makes training very nice but likewise if your taught the principles it should be no problem. I am not sure what the new Mac office looks like though but no doubt its different.

  5. #20

    dhicks's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by moggy View Post
    I've played with Open Office a bit and it seems fine, but using it across the whole school is another matter.
    Why bother, anyway? Just switch to a web-based word processor and webmail. Now you only need laptops with web browsers, nothing else.

    --
    David Hicks

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    Quote Originally Posted by HodgeHi View Post
    Don't forget that if you require a good level of support for VB and such then this is lacking in Open office as much as any other free open source alternative unless this has changed...
    MS removed VB support from MSOffice on the mac, so OpenOffice now supports VB better than MSOffice (on a mac). For cross platform compatibility, OpenOffice is the way forwards.

  7. #22
    Butuz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dhicks View Post
    Why bother, anyway? Just switch to a web-based word processor and webmail. Now you only need laptops with web browsers, nothing else.

    --
    David Hicks

    Any suggestions on good web based office suites???

    Butuz

  8. #23

    tmcd35's Avatar
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    I think

    Email Hosting, CRM, Project Management, Office Suite, Document Management and more

    is probably the best

    but then there is always Google Apps. When is M$ releasing Office Live?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Butuz View Post
    Any suggestions on good web based office suites???

    Butuz
    Anything that'll work when a class of 30 students try to save their documents with huge images included simultaneously at the end of the class?

    Might need to stress-test your internet line a little before opting for this route.

  10. #25


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    Quote Originally Posted by jamesb View Post
    Anything that'll work when a class of 30 students try to save their documents with huge images included simultaneously at the end of the class?
    yes, we use a combination of moodle and drupaled.
    For courses that require word processing we still use a word processor, but for the majority of coursework students can use forums, webpages, using the online learning community that we have created.
    An online community/ webspace for submitting work is much more flexible than using an application such as MSOffice or OpenOffice, it deals with images, movies, chat and all the things that you cannot do in a word processor alone.

    edit: did I mention that submitting work to a social network is much better for collaboration than traditional word processing methods
    Last edited by CyberNerd; 23rd January 2009 at 09:45 AM.

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    Another thing to consider is also your staff. Its easy sitting here spouting about which software we should be using and what is the standard, but we aren't the ones who will be using it to teach(Expcet to show the teachers how to use it). I have installed it when we couldn't afford the licences for MS and were due to get new clients which were quoted with an MS Office licence. OO was installed through the school in the short term, but when we had enough licences of MS throughout it was requested that OO was removed so it didn't cause confusion for the pupils.

    Very few teachers would use it as to learn a new software would take up too much time. Ironically the teachers who used it the most were the ones who were doing presentations with pupils for the first time. They hadn't used Powerpoint before so when they used OO for the first time they didn't know the difference.

  12. #27

    tmcd35's Avatar
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    Funnily enough, Penfold, this is actually one of my two arguments for OpenOffice!

    The difference, at least in UI, between Office 2003 and OpenOffice are quite minimal compare to the difference between Office 2003 and Office 2007.

    Don't get me wrong, I've by no means made my own mind up as to which way I'll recommend to the school that we go. There are other things to take into consideration on our route to standardisation.

    In my experience 99% of teachers want something they are familiar with (Office 2000/XP/03/OO) and that will open M$ formatted Word/Excel/Powerpoint docs.

    The attraction of OO is easy...

    • Free
    • M$ Format Compatible
    • Office 97/2000/XP/03 Classic UI
    • Cross Platform - exact same program on Win/Mac/Linux
    • Can give away copies for kids to use on home PC

  13. #28

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    I wouldn't move to OpenOffice here (yet) purely because it doesn't provide the same features (as already mentioned) when compared to MS Office (yet!).

    Also the fact that our licenses are already paid for for Office 2003. In the days when Office 2003 are becoming obsolete and we're looking to upgrade (which to be fair will be quite a while away) then OpenOffice might be a solution.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hightower View Post
    I wouldn't move to OpenOffice here (yet) purely because it doesn't provide the same features (as already mentioned) when compared to MS Office (yet!).
    Becta studied this in detail, they concluded that the features of MSOffice were aimed at business, not education and that none of 'extra' features in MSoffice were 'must have' compared to other office suites (including openoffice)

    http://publications.becta.org.uk/dow...fm?resID=28199

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    nephilim's Avatar
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    We have OpenOffice throughout the school apart from where SIMS is used. Reason being is that we dont have to pay M$ for it, and we can have the kids working on M$ Office 2007 at home and the files work perfectly in the school. Also another thing we like about it is the fact that if the kids can't afford M$ office or anything, we burn it to a disk for them and they use it at home.

    Gives our school a good name and its win/win for us as it means we know the kids that we have given a copy too!



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