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MacRumors
Sep 18, 2007, 03:20 PM
http://www.macrumors.com/images/macrumorsthreadlogo.gif (http://www.macrumors.com)

Microsoft's Office for Mac team blog wrote about (http://blogs.msdn.com/macmojo/archive/2007/09/18/evolution-at-work.aspx) their thought process in developing the user interface for the upcoming Mac Office 2008.
Mac users have strong expectations about their user interface. We're often told by our users that they definitely want us to look Mac-like. .... We could have just left the Apple and app menu in place, and ignored the rest of it. Not only is this a waste of screen real estate, it breaks the user's mental model. But the Ribbon does some great things, and we want to capitalise on their innovation while still ensuring that we keep a Mac-like experience.
They've also posted a sneak peak at Mac Office 2008 at http://www.macoffice2008.com/

Article Link (http://www.macrumors.com/2007/09/18/mac-office-2008-preview/)



ebow
Sep 18, 2007, 03:23 PM
The sneak peek site is running extremely slowly. Has anyone taken screen shots, or found them elsewhere?

From the little I've seen, I don't think I'm going to like this new UI. It looks like it will take up more and more of my widescreen iMac's limited vertical screen space. :p

psychofreak
Sep 18, 2007, 03:24 PM
The sneak peek site is running extremely slowly. Has anyone taken screen shots, or found them elsewhere?

From the little I've seen, I don't think I'm going to like this new UI. It looks like it will take up more and more of my widescreen iMac's limited vertical screen space. :p
And my Macbook's...NeoOffice and Pages it is then :)

Vinnie_vw
Sep 18, 2007, 03:25 PM
Such a bloated site! I hope it's not an indication of how the apps will turn out to be.

rossgumbrell
Sep 18, 2007, 03:26 PM
iwork '08 or Office '08

Which do you think will be better?

:apple::apple::apple:

x86isslow
Sep 18, 2007, 03:26 PM
It looks great, I can't wait to get my hands on it, my copy of v.X student is getting a little old.

Peace
Sep 18, 2007, 03:34 PM
Youtube links

http://www.youtube.com/v/YhGacKJwdSI

http://www.youtube.com/v/W-ydFpvrXxA

http://www.youtube.com/v/MHaAoS5eVg0

http://www.youtube.com/v/G1TniLEO9ew

http://www.youtube.com/v/mBn1y7dWPAs

http://www.youtube.com/v/euZJdfTvqpU

merrsaj
Sep 18, 2007, 03:36 PM
um, someone should have told Microsoft not to bother. Bill, there's a little something called iWork '08 which kinda makes office for Mac somewhat useless. :)

Seriously though, I'll take a look when it's released, but will most likely stick to iWork.:apple:

Bern
Sep 18, 2007, 03:36 PM
I used Office up until iWork was released. I'm happy that I have something that runs effortlessly, does exactly what I expect it to and opens all files I need. Office has become a lazy cow, bloated and full of "features" :rolleyes: not many people know about or use.

Cloudsurfer
Sep 18, 2007, 03:36 PM
Too bad, Microsoft took too long so I went for iWork '08.

mudbug99
Sep 18, 2007, 03:36 PM
As someone who has recently been forced by the IT team to upgrade to Office 2007 at work, I can tell you for a certainty that the ribbon alone will keep me from upgrading. I swear, it sometimes takes my 10 clicks to complete a simple formatting task I used to be able to do quickly from a single screen. Who are these people that design for Microsoft, and where do they get their foolish ideas? To make a bad situation worse, it seems that customizing that ridiculous thing takes some work, which I have not found time for yet. So, once again, we're stuck with doing things the way Microsoft thinks they should be done. Not that Apple's much better some times, but at least their interfaces are not designed by a 5 year old with megalomania.

Mindcrime
Sep 18, 2007, 03:38 PM
I've always been a huge fan of Office on the Mac, but after watching that flash presentation on their site, all I can say is: ugh. I don't think I will be upgrading.

I really don't like the new direction the Office apps are taking. I don't like them on the Windows platform, and I like them even less on OS X.

mkrishnan
Sep 18, 2007, 03:39 PM
This looks like an improvement on the Windows ribbon, and I'm slowly getting sold on some of their design ideas, but I still think this is wrong in terms of layout... Particularly with more and more widescreen displays, I would've really preferred for them to streamline this same model of functions into the vertical palettes.

NewSc2
Sep 18, 2007, 03:43 PM
Personally I miss the old Office 2000 and XP. It was ugly but functional, and I wouldn't mind something just like that for the Mac. I tried Office for Mac and couldn't understand why they changed so much between the two. Firefox on PC and Mac look about the same...

EDIT: Just checked out some of the vids... if I wanted to make brochures and stuff I'd stick with iWork. I used to use Word for typing random reports and stuff, but I've switched to TextEdit. I haven't tried out Numbers yet, but Excel is the only thing I use Office for nowadays.

longofest
Sep 18, 2007, 03:44 PM
I still am not over the fact that they aren't supporting vB macros. I'll stick with my Office 2004 + iWork 08 combination.

twoodcc
Sep 18, 2007, 03:44 PM
i'll probably try it out when it comes, but i'll mainly use iwork 08

elppa
Sep 18, 2007, 03:46 PM
iwork '08 or Office '08

Which do you think will be better?

:apple::apple::apple:

I don't know, but I can tell you which will be cheaper.

kbrain2929
Sep 18, 2007, 03:46 PM
The UI is "nice". It's going to take some time to get used to. It's just diffrent. But what I'm wondering is if Apple will be offering some kind of iPhone support for Office2008. I would think something may come out in version 1.1.1... who knows. :apple:

Object-X
Sep 18, 2007, 03:46 PM
They can't even get their web site to work on my Mac. :rolleyes:

Marky_Mark
Sep 18, 2007, 03:46 PM
They've also posted a sneak peak at Mac Office 2008 at http://www.macoffice2008.com/


What a bag o' ***** website. Took ten minutes to draw the frames then the video freezes after about two seconds. How very Microsoft. Sheesh. :rolleyes:

psychofreak
Sep 18, 2007, 03:48 PM
What a bag o' ***** website. Took ten minutes to draw the frames then the video freezes after about two seconds. How very Microsoft. Sheesh. :rolleyes:

Click "share" and just copy/paste the Youtube link :)

chr1s60
Sep 18, 2007, 03:49 PM
In my opinion, Office is the only thing Microsoft does better than Apple. I expect that will probably change in the future, but for the time being I will most likely stick with Office.

Peace
Sep 18, 2007, 03:49 PM
I posted the youtube links.Scroll back a page.

justflie
Sep 18, 2007, 03:50 PM
iWork '08 FTW! :apple:

phytonix
Sep 18, 2007, 03:50 PM
The ribbon interface may seems like a lot of clicks.
But what Office 2008 can do in those video seem pretty nice. iWork does not seem as powerful and Office 2008 seem to be able to produce things as pretty.

Wait and see, and I am excited to see how it will turn out to be.

kbrain2929
Sep 18, 2007, 03:52 PM
Too bad, Microsoft took too long so I went for iWork '08.

You know... it's funny you said that! I did the same thing. But eventually, I think M$ will "die out" on the Mac. What I'm trying to say is that Office on the Mac will loose is vamp. I think iWork is becoming the new Office. iWork can only go up hill from here. (at least I think so) That's just my two cents, and I'm probably wrong, but, again, it's that weird feeling I've got in my gut. :apple:

EDIT: While iWork is not as powerful... it will gain some of those cool features. And just for the record... I'm not talking about an overnight downfall... I'm talking about years and years away.

Voidness
Sep 18, 2007, 03:58 PM
I wouldn't even consider getting Office 2008 for my MacBook Pro, as I already have Office 2007 and Parallels 3. Coherence in Parallels is getting better and better at making Windows applications work seamlessly with Mac apps. However, I might consider getting it for my iBook. I was thinking of getting iWork '08, but I decided to wait for Microsoft's offering.

(I'm one of the few people that I know who love the ribbon interface of Office 2007. :p )

phytonix
Sep 18, 2007, 03:58 PM
I don't know, but I can tell you which will be cheaper.

I bought my Office 2004 Mac for $72. I cannot even pay that much to get iWork 08.

dizastor
Sep 18, 2007, 04:00 PM
i hope the new Entourage lets me change my password without having to log onto a vacant PC in my office.

That's my most nagging complaint... that... and having to use Entourage/Office at work in the first place. :)

Mydel
Sep 18, 2007, 04:01 PM
Hmm that site is terrible. I sure hope its not the sign of things to come. My safari tried to open for like few minutes and than opend with error and finally froze.....:D:rolleyes: but back on the topic these ribbons are not all that bad but as someone already mentioned JUST USE PALLETES ON THE SIDE...How hard its gonna be?? With all that tools on the top of the page there is like an 1.5" left of actuall space to work with. Most of the screens is now panoramic in the name of god

jonnysods
Sep 18, 2007, 04:09 PM
In my opinion, Office is the only thing Microsoft does better than Apple. I expect that will probably change in the future, but for the time being I will most likely stick with Office.

I totally agree - I have a MBP with Bootcamp installed for work - the ONLY thing that is keeping me back from ditching XP is Office 2007 - I love it! I hope that 08 for Mac goes one up on them!

bigandy
Sep 18, 2007, 04:11 PM
aah, the "too little too late" team want to prove they're up to something...

and looking at those videos the ribbon thing is no worse than the one on windows office 2007..

La Porta
Sep 18, 2007, 04:13 PM
Word 5.1...that's all i'm saying.

bdkennedy1
Sep 18, 2007, 04:18 PM
The sneak peek site is running extremely slowly. Has

Maybe it's running under Rosetta!

Darkroom
Sep 18, 2007, 04:18 PM
here's another image of Office '08 i found online... standing by the tree...
http://www.worth1000.com/entries/282500/282881JOrn_w.jpg

Gosh
Sep 18, 2007, 04:19 PM
I bet iWork 09 comes out before Office 08!:p

LagunaSol
Sep 18, 2007, 04:22 PM
As someone who has recently been forced by the IT team to upgrade to Office 2007 at work, I can tell you for a certainty that the ribbon alone will keep me from upgrading. I swear, it sometimes takes my 10 clicks to complete a simple formatting task I used to be able to do quickly from a single screen.

I agree. The diehard Winbots seem to think that the ribbon is the greatest thing since sliced bread (they happily lap up anything MS tosses their way), but I find it exasperating. There are a few nice aspects, outweighed by the excessive amount of time it takes me to analyze the changing menu each time I want to perform a simple adjustment.

Ribbon interface = fail.

I'm done with Office. Good riddance.

torero
Sep 18, 2007, 04:25 PM
looks like a resource hog, with lots of clicks and options you would rarely use. M$ should try something elegant for a change. Maybe send an intern over to hang out with steve and see if something rubs off.

plumbingandtech
Sep 18, 2007, 04:27 PM
I've switched to iWork. Will keep my old version of PPC office around just in case someone sends me a old file or something.

DeathChill
Sep 18, 2007, 04:32 PM
I agree. The diehard Winbots seem to think that the ribbon is the greatest thing since sliced bread (they happily lap up anything MS tosses their way), but I find it exasperating. There are a few nice aspects, outweighed by the excessive amount of time it takes me to analyze the changing menu each time I want to perform a simple adjustment.

Ribbon interface = fail.

I'm done with Office. Good riddance.

Sounds like the people at this forum about Apple. ;)

Regardless, I think that Office is a good tool and I don't think there's too many options to replace it currently. We all know iWork '08 is not in the same league.

bdkennedy1
Sep 18, 2007, 04:33 PM
I'm sure the ribbon was cumulated from years of research and intensive study and investment. LOL

You know what the ribbon is? It's a patch. A patch to make bloated, difficult software seem easier to use. Microsoft has used the same GUI for so long it felt it had to come up with something else, and the ribbon shows that they're out of ideas.

In reality, Microsoft needs to scrap Office and start over again.

Why aren't Mac users clamoring for Office like they do with Adobe and Apple products? Because Office sucks. It's that simple. No one wants it on their machine unless they have to.

We have seen in that past what wonderful software has come from the Mac Business Unit. Windows Media Player for Mac, Microsoft Messenger for Mac, Internet Explorer for Mac. See a pattern?

MikeTheC
Sep 18, 2007, 04:33 PM
I very rarely have occasion to use Word or Excel, especially since having left my previous employer. It was such a nightmare to try and take data from one finished project (say, a web page on our company site) and stick it into Excel or elsewhere, due to all the damn formatting. I usually took everything through Notepad first, then into the final destination app.

I somewhat do the same thing here at home, but normally when I create text of any real length, I do it in Text Edit as plain text, then copy-n-paste it into wherever it's going, such as a message board. With Word (especially) trying to be all things to all people, many of it's "features" just keep stepping on everything.

I've thought about getting iWork, but I'm not sure I'd get $79 worth of use out of it.

FoxyKaye
Sep 18, 2007, 04:36 PM
Screw "The Ribbon" and the new UI - the only thing I want to hear from M$ is, "we're sorry, but not including Macro support was completely idiotic. We're working to restore this functionality before the Gold Master release."

Oh, and I just worked on Windows Vista today for the first time - it took 10 minutes to get it to connect to a simple WPA network. Any other company that produces this kind of tripe would be out of business.

If M$ were a gas station, they'd currently be selling regular unleaded for $5.95 a gallon.

I'm seriously considering a switch for my organization to Neo/Open Office once they finish the merge.

majordude
Sep 18, 2007, 04:53 PM
As someone who has recently been forced by the IT team to upgrade to Office 2007 at work, I can tell you for a certainty that the ribbon alone will keep me from upgrading.

I have to agree with you. That ribbon is NOT INTUITIVE at all! And the stupidest thing about it is that Microsoft has spent the last 15 years training us on where all freaking buttons and links are and then they change everything up for no good reason! The swine!

And Outlook 2007 is the biggest POS of the bunch. Really slow. Slow to load, slow to use... yet fast to crash.

Their desktop search turns an XP machine into one running 95. Slow and prone to crashing.

Office 2003 is quite nice. A lot of good features, runs okay, hardly ever crashes.

I think I'll stick with iWorks too.

It took four years to produce this? :eek:

BornAgainMac
Sep 18, 2007, 04:53 PM
The Website is terrible and slow. At least it confirms they are just sticking with the basic Word, Excel, Powerpoint, and Entourage. I am going to stick with iWork '08. Microsoft took so long and didn't even deliver in the end.

Fuchal
Sep 18, 2007, 04:54 PM
Wow, this is hideously ugly.

majordude
Sep 18, 2007, 04:55 PM
looks great!

Less filling! :D

chaosbunny
Sep 18, 2007, 05:06 PM
The ribbon interface may seems like a lot of clicks.
But what Office 2008 can do in those video seem pretty nice. iWork does not seem as powerful and Office 2008 seem to be able to produce things as pretty.

Wait and see, and I am excited to see how it will turn out to be.

"Producing something pretty" and "microsoft office" are certainly not mentioned very often in the same sentence. Maybe office is an efficient tool for some tasks, but never ever for producing something pretty. :)

nate13
Sep 18, 2007, 05:07 PM
well, at least we arent totally forgotten.... but what about Microsoft Messenger? v6?!?! i think windows is on 8 at least!

Virgil-TB2
Sep 18, 2007, 05:09 PM
This looks like an improvement on the Windows ribbon, and I'm slowly getting sold on some of their design ideas, but I still think this is wrong in terms of layout... Particularly with more and more widescreen displays, I would've really preferred for them to streamline this same model of functions into the vertical palettes.I noticed this too.

The whole world is going widescreen, and Microsoft's "new idea" is yet more toolbars at the top of the screen.

They don't seem to even consider integrating Office with the OS at all. They should be using tool trays, side-drawers or floating context sensitive palettes, but instead we get "Ribbon lite."

Virgil-TB2
Sep 18, 2007, 05:16 PM
They've also posted a sneak peak at Mac Office...Am I the only one who is not impressed here?

The big news for Word is more toolbars at the top (only they are bigger)

The big news for Excel is ... what exactly? OLE?

The big news for Powerpoint ... no news at all.

The big news for Exchange? They seem to have built in support for Windows Mobiles with that "Today" widget.

Wow, there are so many people using Windows-Mobile based handhelds that want a "Today" page in Exchange on their Mac????? There must be dozens of people in that market.

How about keeping the butt-ugly interface we have gotten used to, but actually fixing the bugs that keep you from ... you know, actually using the thing? :rolleyes:

applefanatic
Sep 18, 2007, 05:16 PM
Haha I love the fact that the preview site does absolutely nothing. Well actually I take that back, you do get to see a lovely MS logo at the bottom of the page....how exciting.

nigrunze
Sep 18, 2007, 05:16 PM
I was one of the people to vote negative.

It's because Microsoft refuses to get rid of that damn ribbon interface. It's so convoluted! The old one was perfect. Why get rid of it when it works perfectly?

Luckily we have a little app called iWork. I have never created a table so easily in Word as I did in Pages '08.

nsbio
Sep 18, 2007, 05:19 PM
Talk about a useless web site: it is as counterintuitive - and slow - as it can possibly get. There are many IQ-smart people at Microsoft but they simply do not get the very concept of user interface. If they were asked to design a soup spoon they would have come up with an FM, blueooth, Wi-Fi - enabled contraption that requires antivirus, software update, and crashes whenever the batteries run out... and requires you to download plugins for each new kind of soup.
Sad....

LagunaSol
Sep 18, 2007, 05:23 PM
Sounds like the people at this forum about Apple.

Au contraire, you won't find people anywhere griping about Apple stuff more-so than in Mac user forums. :p We're a demanding bunch.

We all know iWork '08 is not in the same league.

Depends on how important this "league" of which you speak is. 99% of the people I work with don't have a clue about 99% of the features in Office. Fact. Heck, iWork 08 is overkill for them.

People (and companies) are starting to realize they really don't need a $400 office suite to meet their needs. And once this happens en masse, Microsoft is in big trouble. Ribbon or no.

Virgil-TB2
Sep 18, 2007, 05:23 PM
The ribbon interface may seems like a lot of clicks.
But what Office 2008 can do in those video seem pretty nice. iWork does not seem as powerful and Office 2008 seem to be able to produce things as pretty.

Wait and see, and I am excited to see how it will turn out to be.I was surprised at how useable the new iWork is though. I had written off the last version in about ten seconds as "lame," but iWork 08 is useable for the first time.

What I was surprised at was the lack of a data merge feature in the new Pages application. If it just did that, we could replace half the Office users in our Faculty, but without it, we are locked into Office for the foreseeable future. Then once all our users have gotten used to the new Office, trying to get them to switch to a different product (even if it's better), will be very hard indeed.

I was hoping that Apple would really try a lot harder with iWork 08 as this is a golden opportunity to switch a lot of folks over while MS has such a crappy product with a semi-crappy one on the way. A serious word processor from Apple with a data merge utility would have eliminated Office, instead we are going to be comparing the two ad infinitum.

irun5k
Sep 18, 2007, 05:24 PM
Why does MS even make Office for the Mac? I mean, they are making it for a competitor's minority market share OS. It can't be nearly as profitable as Win32 Office, considering the huge difference in number of sales they must rack up. And I'd imagine the development costs are about the same. Sure they leverage already having developed the file formats and so forth. But it has to be easier to develop for a platform when you're also the ones who developed the OS and all the development tools!

I am really glad they sell Office for OS X- a lot of people have to have the real deal at work or else they couldn't use their Mac. I'm just curious as to why they spend the effort? I'm sure there is some part of the equation that I am missing.

Virgil-TB2
Sep 18, 2007, 05:37 PM
... You know what the ribbon is? It's a patch. A patch to make bloated, difficult software seem easier to use. Microsoft has used the same GUI for so long it felt it had to come up with something else, and the ribbon shows that they're out of ideas. ...I don't find the Ribbon to be a "bad idea" overall, it's just poorly executed and over-rated. If you take the excellent floating format palette idea from Office 2004 and stick it at the top of the window sideways, you basically got the same thing (a context sensitive tool palette). So you could argue that the ribbon came out of the work of the MBU, who are the only "Apple-guys" at Microsoft.

The problem is, you are right about it being a patch, but unlike any other patch, it's not optional.
You use the ribbon or you don't use Office at all. I think they were afraid that if folks had a choice they would not bother with the thing.

Another really bad (or good depending on your allegiance), thing about the Ribbon, is that by default it does not include some basic options (like "Save As.." for one), and is somewhere between minimally configurable and not configurable at all.

So it's not the UI idea of the Ribbon that's at fault, it's the Fascist stupid way they implemented it, and all the heuristics behind those decisions. Like many Microsoft products, it's not designed to be useful to the end user so much as it's designed to promote Microsoft and their other products. This is of course similar to the way they are trying to tie Entourage into Windows Mobile devices (as if this is relevant for the average Mac user) and push that new file format down our throats.

glennsan
Sep 18, 2007, 05:39 PM
Why does MS even make Office for the Mac? I mean, they are making it for a competitor's minority market share OS. It can't be nearly as profitable as Win32 Office, considering the huge difference in number of sales they must rack up. And I'd imagine the development costs are about the same. Sure they leverage already having developed the file formats and so forth. But it has to be easier to develop for a platform when you're also the ones who developed the OS and all the development tools!

I am really glad they sell Office for OS X- a lot of people have to have the real deal at work or else they couldn't use their Mac. I'm just curious as to why they spend the effort? I'm sure there is some part of the equation that I am missing.


I read once where Bill Gates said that MS makes over $400 million dollars a year from Office for the Mac. That's why they do it.

Glennsan

jonnylink
Sep 18, 2007, 05:44 PM
I wonder which will make it out first MS Office or OpenOffice (http://porting.openoffice.org/mac/)? Personally I can get everything I need from open office. As it is I do much of my writing in text edit these days anyway. If I need to make it complex later there's InDesign (though I could use LaTeX or OpenOffice). Point is, there's better ways to do text stuff than MS Word. The most of the rest of the stuff can get done elsewhere too.

BornAgainMac
Sep 18, 2007, 05:51 PM
Why does MS even make Office for the Mac?

20% of the revenue for Office is coming from the Mac. It isn't some small 2% like most people would believe. Perhaps it is less piracy, I am not sure why the number is so big.

Lancetx
Sep 18, 2007, 05:58 PM
Sorry Microsoft, but I got tired of waiting and bought iWork '08. I'll just stick with my copy of Office 2004 for the precious few docs and spreadsheets I've come across here that won't work right with iWork '08's apps.

polishmacuser
Sep 18, 2007, 05:58 PM
just great its in widescreen now doing this on macbook is going to be a horror im sticking with iowrk 08 and ms office 2004 thank very much :D GO :apple:

Eidorian
Sep 18, 2007, 06:01 PM
I'm loving Office 2007.

I just hope that learning the Ribbon in Windows will translate over to OS X. It's a difficult task with the persistent menu bar.

Come on MacBU, get that page working.

gugy
Sep 18, 2007, 06:08 PM
The only reason I am still looking at Office is Entourage. Most folks in my industry use it and the fact it work seamlessly with my Hotmail account is a big plus. But heck, I just hate using it. I am thinking switching to all Apple apps after Leopard is released.
Just not sure if Apple Mail supports Hotmail. I heard about a patch but will that work under Leopard?

elppa
Sep 18, 2007, 06:11 PM
I am really glad they sell Office for OS X- a lot of people have to have the real deal at work or else they couldn't use their Mac. I'm just curious as to why they spend the effort? I'm sure there is some part of the equation that I am missing.

They make a profit on it, which cannot be said for other parts of the business.

It is foolish to pull out of a market where you are making a profit.

nadyne
Sep 18, 2007, 06:17 PM
Why does MS even make Office for the Mac?

I'm not sure if there is a single answer. I could point out that both PowerPoint and Excel were originally Mac applications that only got ported to Windows later in life. I could point out that Office:Mac is profitable. Or I could just point out that there are 180 of us here in MacBU who are all Mac users and we want to create great Mac software. Even though I realise that some of you guys might disagree with this last point. ;)

I know that the sneak peek website is slow. It's getting absolutely hammered with traffic right now, and I'm really sorry that you guys are running into problems.

That's my blog post that is quoted here. If you guys have specific comments about my post or about the user experience work that we've done in Office:Mac 2008, I'd love to hear it.

Regards,
Nadyne.

Eidorian
Sep 18, 2007, 06:21 PM
I'm not sure if there is a single answer. I could point out that both PowerPoint and Excel were originally Mac applications that only got ported to Windows later in life. I could point out that Office:Mac is profitable. Or I could just point out that there are 180 of us here in MacBU who are all Mac users and we want to create great Mac software. Even though I realise that some of you guys might disagree with this last point. ;)

I know that the sneak peek website is slow. It's getting absolutely hammered with traffic right now, and I'm really sorry that you guys are running into problems.

That's my blog post that is quoted here. If you guys have specific comments about my post or about the user experience work that we've done in Office:Mac 2008, I'd love to hear it.

Regards,
Nadyne.Thanks for the reply in this thread. :D

Hopefully your higher ups will notice the demand for this preview site. ;)

majordude
Sep 18, 2007, 06:22 PM
Why does MS even make Office for the Mac? I mean, they are making it for a competitor's minority market share OS.

That came up 10 years ago...

http://www.macworld.co.uk/macsoftware/news/index.cfm?newsid=17394

Be sure to read the PDF (http://edge-op.org/iowa/www.iowaconsumercase.org/122106/PLEX0_6060.pdf) at the bottom of the article!

anamznazn
Sep 18, 2007, 06:24 PM
Looks good so far. Can't wait til I get my hands on it

nadyne
Sep 18, 2007, 06:28 PM
This is of course similar to the way they are trying to tie Entourage into Windows Mobile devices (as if this is relevant for the average Mac user)

Are you talking about My Day? My Day is a little app that sits on your desktop. It reads data out of Entourage for your calendar and tasks. It isn't related to Windows Mobile (or any other particular mobile device) in any way. It's just a quick way for you to see what you've got going on in your day.

For syncing with all mobile devices, Entourage uses OS X Sync Services. Personally, I sync Entourage with my iPhone. Entourage syncing with mobile devices is totally unrelated to My Day.

Regards,
Nadyne.

synth3tik
Sep 18, 2007, 06:29 PM
In the time it has taken M$ to update Office Apple has converted all computers to Intel, released a few different revs of the iMac, macbook, and macbook Pro. Has updated a number of software suites (iLife, iWork, and Logic) and have almost completed work on 10.5, and released all new iPods and an iPhone. What is the deal with the snail pace of M$, at least if they were this slow you would expect something good.

nadyne
Sep 18, 2007, 06:29 PM
Hopefully your higher ups will notice the demand for this preview site. ;)

Yeah, I think it's safe to say that they're quite aware of it. :)

Regards,
Nadyne.

majordude
Sep 18, 2007, 06:29 PM
Looks good so far. Can't wait til I get my hands on it

Looks good? Their site doesn't even load.

Yo! Microsoft webtards! I'm not running IE on Mac! You don't even publish that anymore! Design for Mozilla!

Eidorian
Sep 18, 2007, 06:31 PM
Yeah, I think it's safe to say that they're quite aware of it. :)

Regards,
Nadyne.Well you have my site's volume license and my personal copy as a sale then. :p

I just hope the Office Open XML File Format Converter shapes up as well as Office is looking.

SiliconAddict
Sep 18, 2007, 06:40 PM
um, someone should have told Microsoft not to bother. Bill, there's a little something called iWork '08 which kinda makes office for Mac somewhat useless. :)

Seriously though, I'll take a look when it's released, but will most likely stick to iWork.:apple:

Unless you want to actually function in the real world. iWork is borderline useless for all but people who want to do the basics.

Peace
Sep 18, 2007, 06:41 PM
Unless you want to actually function in the real world. iWork is borderline useless for all but people who want to do the basics.

It's a lot slower too because it's currently using Carbon instead of Cocoa ;)

SiliconAddict
Sep 18, 2007, 06:43 PM
Looks good? Their site doesn't even load.

Yo! Microsoft webtards! I'm not running IE on Mac! You don't even publish that anymore! Design for Mozilla!

I question who is the tard. Works fine on FF on my MBP. I think you shouldn't jump to conclusions until you actually let the site load. :rolleyes: That and check your extensions. Check your adblock settings. Mine was blocking some elements of the site.

Abstract
Sep 18, 2007, 06:44 PM
Bill, there's a little something called iWork '08 which kinda makes office for Mac somewhat useless. :)


Not it doesn't.....not if you have proper work to do. ;)


The big news for Word is more toolbars at the top (only they are bigger)

The big news for Excel is ... what exactly? OLE?

The big news for Powerpoint ... no news at all.

The big news for Exchange? They seem to have built in support for Windows Mobiles with that "Today" widget. [/quote]

The big news is that this will be an Intel native app, and crash less often (hopefully). To me, that would have been good enough. In fact, a universal version of Office:Mac would have been perfect as well. I always liked it, and it was VERY easy for me to do everything. iWork 08 isn't powerful enough if you have real spreadsheets and documents to write. Of course, even when I do write proper documents, I do it in LaTeX. ;)

Hairball
Sep 18, 2007, 06:45 PM
I converted to Mac about a year and a half ago for home use. At work I use a PC and most of the programs I need are from MS Office, so I see the need and preference for both manufacturers. Between the two, I prefer the Mac design and usability. I'm not particularly fond of the new MS ribbon interface, but I haven't used the program either. Just as using Numbers took a little time getting used to, Office will require the same. I'm not going to bash MS simply because it is MS.

powderblue17
Sep 18, 2007, 06:47 PM
Why does MS even make Office for the Mac? I mean, they are making it for a competitor's minority market share OS. It can't be nearly as profitable as Win32 Office, considering the huge difference in number of sales they must rack up. And I'd imagine the development costs are about the same. Sure they leverage already having developed the file formats and so forth. But it has to be easier to develop for a platform when you're also the ones who developed the OS and all the development tools!

I am really glad they sell Office for OS X- a lot of people have to have the real deal at work or else they couldn't use their Mac. I'm just curious as to why they spend the effort? I'm sure there is some part of the equation that I am missing.

It's really simple. To keep the Justice Department off there back. If they were to cancel Office for Mac then the whole talk of breaking up MS would start again. Plus it actually makes very good money for Microsoft and that's why they put it in the Entertainment Division so they could help make up some of the huge losses with the XBox when they report earnings. Why would an Office product be apart of the Entertainment division anyway? I guess you could also say there is some history involved to as word, excel, and powerpoint first appeared on the Mac in the 80's before the Windows versions. Although I'm sure if Microsoft could they would kill it but really they can't.

bigmc6000
Sep 18, 2007, 06:48 PM
Guess I'll be running Office 2004 for another 3-5 years. This looks exactly like Office 2007 and it blows, bad... I really really really hate it - I bought a new computer and after it froze my straight out of the box computer 3 times and ran macro code slower than my 7 year old computer I uninstalled and put Office XP on it. And for those who haven't used it and who considering themselves more than just "casual users" the "ribbons" suck - bad. They have to be the most counter productive thing in any update that I can ever recall - honestly....

LordJohnWhorfin
Sep 18, 2007, 07:00 PM
I'm not used to seeing "thought process" and "microsoft" in the same sentence. Unless it's qualified with "lack of".
They lost me years ago with that frickin paperclip.

jmmo20
Sep 18, 2007, 07:09 PM
the new sidebar looks exactly like iWok sidebar but.. uglier and bulkier.. and with a on more stuff that makes it all look bloated.

If it wasn't because I do need Excel for everyday science stuff, and that Office 2004 is way toooo slooooooow on my Macbook, I wouldn't even consider updating at all.

But for everything else I use iWork (numbers is still not up to speed in science related stuff).

But I'll get a corporate Office license thru my research council so.. i won't complain because i will be freee.

chicagostars
Sep 18, 2007, 07:23 PM
It's really simple. To keep the Justice Department off there back. If they were to cancel Office for Mac then the whole talk of breaking up MS would start again. Plus it actually makes very good money for Microsoft and that's why they put it in the Entertainment Division so they could help make up some of the huge losses with the XBox when they report earnings. Why would an Office product be apart of the Entertainment division anyway? I guess you could also say there is some history involved to as word, excel, and powerpoint first appeared on the Mac in the 80's before the Windows versions. Although I'm sure if Microsoft could they would kill it but really they can't.

Good points. It's about business. The companies don't see things as personally as rabid followers do.

bloodycape
Sep 18, 2007, 07:35 PM
iwork '08 or Office '08

Which do you think will be better?

:apple::apple::apple:

I'd have to say neither. One is still in the works while the other is just nothing special.

uaaerospace
Sep 18, 2007, 07:41 PM
They can't even get their web site to work on my Mac. :rolleyes:

It doesn't work much better on Windows. I couldn't get it to fully load at work with flash 9.

mac-er
Sep 18, 2007, 07:47 PM
Office 07 for Windows and Office 08 for Mac will both be marked as the time as the major beginning of the downfall of the Office empire. They have just totally ruined their UI.

And, there is absolutely no reason why any website like that should take so long to load. MS is so out of touch.

Google just released their version of Powerpoint today....

bloodycape
Sep 18, 2007, 07:51 PM
No problem here and I was viewing it under Opera.

I actually like the new Office 2007, it looks cleaner and it is just as easy to use, and I have been using office since 95. This new one should be a nice improvement. If it is I will say bye to Openoffice, as the word software does not have grammar check, and is slow to print and save. Same can be said for iwork, it was slow to open a 450kb word doc, and add the fact it has no grammar checker it make it useless for me as a student.

Superdrive
Sep 18, 2007, 07:54 PM
I'm loving Office 2007.

I just hope that learning the Ribbon in Windows will translate over to OS X. It's a difficult task with the persistent menu bar.

Come on MacBU, get that page working.

I'm taking a class at school learning about Office 2007. This is supplement to courses once taught in Office 2003. I'm quickly getting used to the ribbon interface. Although it works well in most instances, there are still a few things that were done faster before. That simply may be because I haven't learned it correctly yet too.

Looks good? Their site doesn't even load.

Yo! Microsoft webtards! I'm not running IE on Mac! You don't even publish that anymore! Design for Mozilla!

It doesn't work in IE or Firefox for XP either...

mountainbiker80
Sep 18, 2007, 07:54 PM
This looks like an improvement on the Windows ribbon, and I'm slowly getting sold on some of their design ideas, but I still think this is wrong in terms of layout... Particularly with more and more widescreen displays, I would've really preferred for them to streamline this same model of functions into the vertical palettes.

HA! I couldn't even get Safari 3 to display their flash! It just crashed on me. Surprise? No.

God^Cent
Sep 18, 2007, 08:03 PM
I donno what all you are talking about with the slow site.... started up just fine for me. The UI looks 110% better, gj Microsoft (for once.).

Doctor Q
Sep 18, 2007, 08:10 PM
I've used versions of Office since it came on floppy disks, and I've used the ribbon in the Windows version of Word. I strongly dislike the ribbon, and will probably avoid updating my Macs if they add the ribbon to the Mac version too, given how many hours I spend in Excel (approximately 25 per day).

Chef Medeski
Sep 18, 2007, 08:26 PM
I wouldn't even consider getting Office 2008 for my MacBook Pro, as I already have Office 2007 and Parallels 3. Coherence in Parallels is getting better and better at making Windows applications work seamlessly with Mac apps. However, I might consider getting it for my iBook. I was thinking of getting iWork '08, but I decided to wait for Microsoft's offering.

(I'm one of the few people that I know who love the ribbon interface of Office 2007. :p )
I like it! And active previews. Im awaiting 2008, but I already got iWork since its great for layout and Numbers is much better for Lab Reports with tables I find than Word or Pages. So thats my main goal with it. Word is definetely more robust, when I get frustrated by limited capabilites in iWork, which while rarely occur does happen, I always go straight to Office and even though it might take me awhile to find it. It almost always has what I need.

Gherkin
Sep 18, 2007, 08:46 PM
I am definitely not an Office Mac power user by any stretch (infact, I only really use Word), but I don't get all the hate on it here. I use the current version and Word works just great, though a little slow because I'm on an Intel Mac.

This new version will be a universal binary which should be very nice, and the ribbon, from what I've used on the Windows machines at my university's computer labs, seems like it would be VERY nice once you get the hang of them.

I guess I probably wouldn't upgrade if I had to pay for it, but I get Office for free from my school so I'll will definitely be upgrading to this.

sellitman
Sep 18, 2007, 09:20 PM
I think it's silly to spend money for an office suite when NEO-Office works so well on my Intel iMac. I have the last version of iWork too and between the two the MS version is of no interest.

Nabooly
Sep 18, 2007, 09:24 PM
You can also add me to the short list of people who like it. I really do. I also like the Office 07. :)

iWork is still a very nice and powerfull set of tools, but i reckon office does some of the things better.

I only use office for word and powerpoint. I dont need any of the other tools with it.

Dustman
Sep 18, 2007, 09:25 PM
lets just hope that microsoft doesnt add registry and drm as features, as they commonly do.

weezer160
Sep 18, 2007, 09:28 PM
I hope Apple ports iWork to winbloz. Then we can talk about a downfall.

majordude
Sep 18, 2007, 09:30 PM
I question who is the tard. Works fine on FF on my MBP. I think you shouldn't jump to conclusions until you actually let the site load. :rolleyes: That and check your extensions. Check your adblock settings. Mine was blocking some elements of the site.

You have a point there (but if you wear a hat no one will notice). :cool:

I have Firefox and it fully loaded. Didn't render properly. Others have expressed issues with it loading too. Read the whole thread.

Adblocks blocking a normal (non-ad) site? No issues? I'm the tard?

springerj
Sep 18, 2007, 09:48 PM
Between Office XP and Office X/2004 and Open Office, people know what to expect in the office UI. I really don't think it needs fixing. Changing the UI is incredibly frustrating for low-end users and not particularly useful for high-end users. It's like deciding an automatic transmission should go P 2 3 D R N instead of P R N D 3 2. The workers in my office are aghast at Office 2007 and I'm refusing to bring it in. Hopefully we can buy office 07 licenses and use them to activate more office xp installs.
On the Mac, I love the formatting pallette. (But most Mac users are not much better than PC users: bold, italic, and default tab stops. That's about it. Getting them to use tabs instead of spaces is a big win.)

On the other hand...
The list numbering in Word has been broken for years. Doing a T of C is awkward. It continues to make its own decisions about setting formats even with all the "automatically do xyz" stuff off. The picture and graphic tools in Word suck. Excel won't let you enter an email address without making it a hyperlink. Excel can't dedup rows in a list. The Find/Replace in Excel is ridiculous. Pivot tables are a conundrum.

In other words, there are some real flaws in these programs that never get addressed. In the meantime, there's a bunch of cosmetic changes that just confuse everyone. Just sell more of those "PC Professor" CDs i see on TV I guess.

Toshimoto
Sep 18, 2007, 10:01 PM
I finally got it to work in Safari 3 and 2 things jumped out at me in the preview.

1. The interface of PowerPoint is taking on (lifting) a lot of iWork/iLife traits, especially the pallettes.

2. When I saw the Excel worksheet at first I thought it was Numbers.

Now we know why Office 2008 has taken so long. Microsoft was waiting for a copy of iWork '08 to put on their photocopiers to finish building the interface. ;)

Kallikinos
Sep 18, 2007, 10:06 PM
iWork 08=$79
Office 08=Some outrageous amount...

I'll stick with iWork.

majordude
Sep 18, 2007, 10:11 PM
The workers in my office are aghast at Office 2007 and I'm refusing to bring it in. Hopefully we can buy office 07 licenses and use them to activate more office xp installs.

Office XP? Isn't that the one from 2000? Office 2003 is much better.

I remember the word processing wars in the mid-90s. Word Perfect, Ami Pro and Word. In the end, Ami Pro was the absolute best and then Lotus gave up. They were in the lead but got scared and quit. Word Perfect invested time and money into DOS and then made Word Perfect for Windows a port of their DOS program. A blue screen for word processing in Windows? It took them a release or so to understand WYSIWYG. Shrugging shoulders. :rolleyes:

Stridder44
Sep 18, 2007, 10:22 PM
I personally can't wait. iWork doesn't cut it for me, and Office, despite being made by Microsoft, is actually a very solid app.

anirban
Sep 18, 2007, 10:31 PM
Call me old fashioned and functionally fixed, but I am NOT going to use the fracking office 2007. Office 2003 is a great and solid application suite, and it does the job well.

I use Office 2004 for the macintosh and its just great. If Office 2008 is going to be anything like Office 2007 for XP/Vista, then count me out- if I get a chance, I would throw a brick at the Office box... sorry for the rant.

Darkroom
Sep 18, 2007, 10:40 PM
Looks good? Their site doesn't even load.

Yo! Microsoft webtards! I'm not running IE on Mac! You don't even publish that anymore! Design for Mozilla!

I question who is the tard. Works fine on FF on my MBP. I think you shouldn't jump to conclusions until you actually let the site load. :rolleyes: That and check your extensions. Check your adblock settings. Mine was blocking some elements of the site.

they don't even employ flash preloaders... this website is honestly a joke... and besides, if they're marketing a product to mac users, they need to have solid code that works for Safari, which it currently does not...

a joke...

[EDIT] of interest, i noticed they are using SWFObject in the site's code... which is hilarious, since microsoft started the whole active-content-blocking crap with MSIE... wow... what a bunch of fools...

majordude
Sep 18, 2007, 10:45 PM
they don't even employ flash preloaders...

FrontPage doesn't do Flash. :D

kcmac
Sep 18, 2007, 10:59 PM
Yo! Chill out on the website design. Ya knowz they are doin it to make the Vista thing look fast! Word to yo momma!

majordude
Sep 18, 2007, 11:10 PM
Word to yo momma!

As long as it ain't Word fo' my Mac. :D

macFabri
Sep 18, 2007, 11:20 PM
Terrible. Confusing. Microsoft didn't understand yet how to make it easy.. Hope they can learn with iWork

deejemon
Sep 18, 2007, 11:56 PM
*

bdkennedy1
Sep 19, 2007, 12:02 AM
I don't think there's anything wrong to expect Microsoft's web site to function properly with OS X's default web browser and the OS it's designed for.



I question who is the tard. Works fine on FF on my MBP. I think you shouldn't jump to conclusions until you actually let the site load. :rolleyes:

thespazz
Sep 19, 2007, 01:07 AM
lol....that is not ribbon.

i love all the apple fanboys "ripping microsoft a new one" due to their website design and quoting the "photocopier" line from WWDC. hah, have any of you taken the time to compare WWDC '07 Leopard to the Vista released 6 months before? Shockingly similar. Way to go Apple, you used your own line to describe yourself.

Sorry guys, Office 2007 for PC is a dream to use. Office 2008 for OS X I'm sure will be even better.

Anawrahta
Sep 19, 2007, 01:50 AM
Sorry guys, Office 2007 for PC is a dream to use. Office 2008 for OS X I'm sure will be even better.

My sentiments exactly. The rabidity of the zealots in this thread almost makes me embarrassed to use the same OS as them.

What amazes me is that Apple is doing better than ever, is stealing market share left and right, yet these people have more foam coming from their mouths than ever before.

Nobody has even used this software and they're bashing the bits out of it.

aristotle
Sep 19, 2007, 02:05 AM
I still am not over the fact that they aren't supporting vB macros. I'll stick with my Office 2004 + iWork 08 combination.
If you want macro support and Office 2007 compatibility, get Neo Office (based on Open Office 2.x) or wait for the Aqua release of Open Office.

isgoed
Sep 19, 2007, 02:32 AM
The big news is that this will be an Intel native app, and crash less often (hopefully). To me, that would have been good enough. In fact, a universal version of Office:Mac would have been perfect as well. I always liked it, and it was VERY easy for me to do everything. iWork 08 isn't powerful enough if you have real spreadsheets and documents to write. Of course, even when I do write proper documents, I do it in LaTeX. ;)It took to post 80 before someone finally mentions that this will be a universal binary. Seems that all the complainers don't do any serious work, because they would have mentioned it already. I actually like word for its features. Making an intel native version will certainly give better performance when working with multiple applications when memory is limited. Although it seems they completely use up the extra CPU-power with their preview-everything-interface. I hope it works.bloated and full of "features" not many people know about or use.Is this some kind of reverse reasoning? C'mon it's ok to be a Macfan, but keep it real.

BKKbill
Sep 19, 2007, 02:59 AM
I've used versions of Office since it came on floppy disks, and I've used the ribbon in the Windows version of Word. I strongly dislike the ribbon, and will probably avoid updating my Macs if they add the ribbon to the Mac version too, given how many hours I spend in Excel (approximately 25 per day).

So if you spend 25 hours a day on Excel did you borrow time from tomorrow to post this today?

ddubbo
Sep 19, 2007, 03:01 AM
Between Office XP and Office X/2004 and Open Office, people know what to expect in the office UI. I really don't think it needs fixing. Changing the UI is incredibly frustrating for low-end users and not particularly useful for high-end users. It's like deciding an automatic transmission should go P 2 3 D R N instead of P R N D 3 2. The workers in my office are aghast at Office 2007 and I'm refusing to bring it in. Hopefully we can buy office 07 licenses and use them to activate more office xp installs.
On the Mac, I love the formatting pallette. (But most Mac users are not much better than PC users: bold, italic, and default tab stops. That's about it. Getting them to use tabs instead of spaces is a big win.)

On the other hand...
The list numbering in Word has been broken for years. Doing a T of C is awkward. It continues to make its own decisions about setting formats even with all the "automatically do xyz" stuff off. The picture and graphic tools in Word suck. Excel won't let you enter an email address without making it a hyperlink. Excel can't dedup rows in a list. The Find/Replace in Excel is ridiculous. Pivot tables are a conundrum.

In other words, there are some real flaws in these programs that never get addressed. In the meantime, there's a bunch of cosmetic changes that just confuse everyone. Just sell more of those "PC Professor" CDs i see on TV I guess.
I had the same problem too. But after week of suffering, I should to say, 2007 far more powerful and easy to use. Word at last works like a normal word processor, Excel have a lot of new features, and the feature I like most, now you can save any doc as PDF

ServicePack
Sep 19, 2007, 03:47 AM
Errors on loading, hanging and of course it crashed my IE (on 2 seperate machines).

:-(

doemel
Sep 19, 2007, 03:51 AM
Errors on loading, hanging and of course it crashed my IE (on 2 seperate machines).

:-(

The funniest thing is that they use Flash for this. I thought MS have "developed' their own "superior" alternative to Flash now...

AdeFowler
Sep 19, 2007, 04:00 AM
I've used versions of Office since it came on floppy disks...
Same here... about 25 disks IIRC ;)

I really don't like the cluster of collapsable palettes on the right hand side. I find them awkward in the current version and they don't seem to have improved here.

My main use for Office, is typing the occasional letter and generating invoices, both of which I'm sure iWork could handle without a problem. I often receive copy from clients in Word or Excel format, but CS3 imports them, so I'll think hard before I splash the cash on Office 08.

doemel
Sep 19, 2007, 04:12 AM
If you want macro support and Office 2007 compatibility, get Neo Office (based on Open Office 2.x) or wait for the Aqua release of Open Office.

VB macros are so 1999. Plus it's on Microsofts blacklist of technologies to be abandoned. And did I mention that they are a PITA, especially when using hard coded directory/file paths and trying to port them to the Mac version?

gikku
Sep 19, 2007, 05:56 AM
20% of the revenue for Office is coming from the Mac. It isn't some small 2% like most people would believe. Perhaps it is less piracy, I am not sure why the number is so big.

All the switchers avoiding Vista buying Office for mac 2004 instead because their Office 2003 versions not compatible with their shiny new OS ?

Uragon
Sep 19, 2007, 05:56 AM
the product hasn't come out yet, and we are seeing a lot of negative reponses, I will wait and see and most probably buy one....hopefully though they don't have 7 versions of it.

Oh-es-Ten
Sep 19, 2007, 06:19 AM
We have always ran out office using Macs and it has always been the case that we needed to purchase Office with every Mac. Initially it was not just for documents, but also for Entourage. Slowly we realised that Entourage was a little bloated and complicated for our needs, and used the Mail.app client instead.

More recently I have been using iWork 08, and I am now recommending that we phase out Office altogether here. I was very impressed with iWork overall and it runs very well and is quite a powerful Word Processor, Spreadsheet and Layout and Presentation App.

I am sure we will get a copy or two of Office just to have for compatibility emergencies, but I agree with the person who was saying that 99 percent of people don't use 90 percent of an Office suite's features. Already I am using styles and templates better in Pages than I ever have in Word, due to a much better layout and approach to using them.

miniConvert
Sep 19, 2007, 06:28 AM
Whatever, Microsoft, just get it out already! :D

k2k koos
Sep 19, 2007, 06:55 AM
What a bag o' ***** website. Took ten minutes to draw the frames then the video freezes after about two seconds. How very Microsoft. Sheesh. :rolleyes:

same here, had to reload the page a few times before it started playing (sloooowwwwwww) not a good indicator if this is what will be coming for Mac Office 2008....
don't like the interface, don't like the ribbon, please MS, you have so much money, has nobody in your enormous organisation any idea about making decent, flowing, logical interfaces, can't you afford them, or are you soo big now, that there are too many people involved in everything, each putting in something (personal job protection programs) that makes everything, through and through sluggish, it seems that way by the products you release.....
:apple:

k2k koos
Sep 19, 2007, 07:01 AM
We have always ran out office using Macs and it has always been the case that we needed to purchase Office with every Mac. Initially it was not just for documents, but also for Entourage. Slowly we realised that Entourage was a little bloated and complicated for our needs, and used the Mail.app client instead.

More recently I have been using iWork 08, and I am now recommending that we phase out Office altogether here. I was very impressed with iWork overall and it runs very well and is quite a powerful Word Processor, Spreadsheet and Layout and Presentation App.

I am sure we will get a copy or two of Office just to have for compatibility emergencies, but I agree with the person who was saying that 99 percent of people don't use 90 percent of an Office suite's features. Already I am using styles and templates better in Pages than I ever have in Word, due to a much better layout and approach to using them.

I agree, I have office for Mac (the very first version), and I only use it for compatibility reasons from time to time. I live in the real world, and the majority of people have some form of office on their machines. I agree that they probably use less than half of what the program is capable of, but that is also it's strength, one person may use a completely different feature set from the other.
For me however, I've experimented with NeoOffice, and iWork, and I'd say that iWork is probably all I would need in 99% of the cases.

weckart
Sep 19, 2007, 07:15 AM
According to the website we are getting the same four programs again as the previous 2 releases.

On the Windows side, you can get Word, Excel, Powerpoint and One Note on the Student/Home 3 licence deal for 100 retail, which is all that most users will need.

As One Note is not being ported albeit elements will probably be included within Word, will there be a similar package for non-students, possibly excluding Entourage, for the same amount, or will we be required to stump up the best part of 200 to upgrade for a single licence? This sort of useful info is missing from the flashy preview site.

majordude
Sep 19, 2007, 09:24 AM
It took to post 80 before someone finally mentions that this will be a universal binary.

Geez... this is late 2007. Isn't that a GIVEN? Even for Microsoft?

igazza
Sep 19, 2007, 10:11 AM
i rather give my money to steve jobs than bill gates so its iwork for me :apple:

Virgil-TB2
Sep 19, 2007, 10:20 AM
Are you talking about My Day? My Day is a little app that sits on your desktop. It reads data out of Entourage for your calendar and tasks. It isn't related to Windows Mobile (or any other particular mobile device) in any way. It's just a quick way for you to see what you've got going on in your day. Well yeah, I did mean "My Day" which as you note uses OS-X sync services. Using the OS-X sync services however is pretty much a given unless the developers are insane enough to try and re-invent that wheel.

What I was referring to is the fact that "My Day" is basically just the "today" screen from Pocket PC (now Windows Mobile). It's the same idea, the same format, and floats on your desktop looking for all the world like you glued your iPaq to the screen.

I would argue that the "My Day" feature has no real utility on a regular desktop as one would tend to have the calendar and email already open and "right there."

As a summary of all your email, contacts appointments, to-dos and calendar appointments "on the go" or on the web it has some use but I don't see this feature as having any real-world functionality beyond being a sort of heads-up display for mobiles. I would bet that in the very near future we are going to be seeing the "My Day" feature, appropriately formatted in Ajax or XML or something so we can "view it at a glance" on our iPhones or better yet...

Windows Mobiles. :)

AJsAWiz
Sep 19, 2007, 10:21 AM
I personally can't wait. iWork doesn't cut it for me, and Office, despite being made by Microsoft, is actually a very solid app.

I agree. I also think that including Elements is a great idea :cool:

MikeTheC
Sep 19, 2007, 10:37 AM
I don't know about anyone else, but I, for one, have some questions for the Microsoft MBU guy...

1. Why do you give us Mac users Entourage instead of Outlook? You know the feature gap between the two programs puts Mac-using office workers at a disadvantage.

2. Why have you not put out VB for Mac OS X? You folks have had years and years to do this, but have not. Again, it puts Mac users at a disadvantage.

3. Where is OneNote for Mac OS X? Or a fully-cross-platform compatible PowerPoint? Or FrontPage (sorry, guys, but it is a part of Office). Or Visio? Again, without these apps, in companies which make use of them, Mac users are put at a disadvantage.

Some people like to think that, just because "Office" exists for the Mac, it's a panacea for compatibility, but in a number of instances -- most obviously where we have dependencies as yet unmet due to lack of porting -- we have an imperfect compatibility at best, and a brick wall in the way at worst.

Microsoft is one of the biggest -- and probably the oldest -- developer for Apple's Mac platform. Several of the core Office apps had their start on the Mac. In short, Microsoft has been doing Classic, Carbon and Cocoa coding for a long time, so it seems a bit embarrassing -- at a minimum, though some might describe it as inexcusable -- we don't have the remainder of the Office suite here.

psxndc
Sep 19, 2007, 10:49 AM
3. Where is OneNote for Mac OS X? Or a fully-cross-platform compatible PowerPoint?

Ding ding ding!! No OneNote == FAIL.

Although, to MS's credit, it did get me to buy Office for Students (to run under parallels). OneNote is a brilliant program. It's a shame more people don't use it/know about it.

Once you realize there is no Ctrl+S, you will see the light.

EagerDragon
Sep 19, 2007, 11:28 AM
Very close to a waste IMHO.

Microsoft removed the macro capabilites, so if you import documents into the Mac that have macros, they do not work. If you convert the macros (some what painful), when you send the file back to windows, the Apple macro features don't work in windows.

If we are instead going to concentrate in being able to move the files back and forth and edit the files, then we are really talking about straight files conversion between the two platforms, so OpenOffice, Neo, iWorks, and others will do the job fine.

iWorks for me, no MS products if I can help it.

CWallace
Sep 19, 2007, 11:29 AM
Office 2007 for Windows takes some getting used to, but once you do, it is nice to have a sense of "commonality" across all the applications.

Adobe's various apps used to be a pain because none of them had a common interface, either, until the latest versions. I am sure those who lived in Photoshop were honked-off when Adobe changed the UI so it was the same as InDesign or Illustrator, but for those of us who use all the applications in Creative Suite, it's nice to only have to learn one UI for all the apps. :)

From what I have seen, Office 2008 for Mac looks good. It takes the "ribbon" interface for Office 2007 and cleans it up and organizes it better, so hopefully it will be easier for Office v.X and Office 2004 users to adapt to.

While I use a Mac at home, I use Windows everywhere else, so it's easier to stay with Office for cross-platform reasons even if iWorks is as good or even better.

bdkennedy1
Sep 19, 2007, 11:29 AM
As I recall, Office 2004 was slow under it's naitive PPC processor, so you have nothing to talk about, know-it-all.


It took to post 80 before someone finally mentions that this will be a universal binary. Seems that all the complainers don't do any serious work, because they would have mentioned it already.

ct-scan
Sep 19, 2007, 11:41 AM
Office 08 looks to be a poor copy of the latest features in iWork 08.

Give in to Pages and Numbers and you won't be disappointed.
And we know that PowerPoint doesn't even hold a candle to Keynote!

If you don't believe the hype...then just download the Trial if iWork 08 for free and see what you think. Don't let your impression of iWork 06 influence you, much has changed and all for the best.

hayesk
Sep 19, 2007, 11:42 AM
The Ribbon is only a replacement for a badly designed menu bar. Mac users have been using the menu bar for years - yes, that is because most Mac applications put thought into where the menu commands go and the titles of each menu.

Windows menus have been a hodge-podge of commands poorly categorized and poorly ordered. Worse yet, MS had those changing menus where the most used commands would move to the stop. One of the biggest advantages of menus is exploiting muscle memory and MS destroyed that. Consistent and well thought-out placement of menus beats a screen space wasting "ribbon" any day.

Papajohn56
Sep 19, 2007, 12:02 PM
Anyone saying iWork, iWork isn't as featured when it comes to spreadsheets, and many of us are science and engineering majors that require that sort of thing.

psychofreak
Sep 19, 2007, 12:08 PM
Looks like there is a new player in the game for a free office suite...

IBM just came out with Windows and Linux versions of Lotus Symphony (http://symphony.lotus.com/software/lotus/symphony/home.jspa), with a Mac version planned :)

benspratling
Sep 19, 2007, 12:31 PM
What a bag o' ***** website. Took ten minutes to draw the frames then the video freezes after about two seconds. How very Microsoft. Sheesh. :rolleyes:

Yes, terrible website.
The office they present in the demos on the website is also not very cool. I didn't think I would, but I actually kind of like the ribbon (runs and ducks for cover under iWork '08, which I already have and use.)

The new mac version of office just looks like microsoft has found yet another way to add another bar and slowly chip away at screen real estate providing stupid, duplicated functionality in a way that nobody will use or expect. (though I like the template dealio's, hey it's just like in iWork!)
Yeay for the iWork '08 Inspector palette!!! (Though I don't like needing a separate font box just to choose a font name!)

spydr
Sep 19, 2007, 03:56 PM
They should've done themselves a big favor - by not putting up that crap and calling it a feature preview.

Seems to be a total waste of time.

Anyway, I think,

iWork + NeoOffice ± Google Docs = Goodbye M$

gauchogolfer
Sep 19, 2007, 04:03 PM
Anyone saying iWork, iWork isn't as featured when it comes to spreadsheets, and many of us are science and engineering majors that require that sort of thing.

Hopefully science and engineering majors aren't using Excel for data analysis either.

packgrad2000
Sep 19, 2007, 04:10 PM
i rather give my money to steve jobs than bill gates so its iwork for me :apple:

Ummm not sure what you mean here. I prefer iWork and Apple just like the rest of us, but it has nothing to do with Steve Jobs. From everything I've read Bill Gates gives way more of his money away than Jobs, and I truly like the guy, nerdy as he is, I just don't like his products.

I only use Excel in Office for Mac now anyways and much prefer iWork (I have 06) when I can use it, especially Pages. One of the ridiculous things about PowerPoint is it doesn't play MPEG-4 or .mov files (unless it's a really old version of Quicktime) I could understand .mov files, but why not MPEG-4???

And count me in as one of those who prefers the Windows version of Office over Office for Mac, even if it is uglier.

kingtj
Sep 19, 2007, 04:12 PM
I bought iWork '08 with high hopes for it, and yet I still don't think the "Numbers" application is anywhere NEAR usable for a serious spreadsheet of any type.

As someone else pointed out in a discussion on Ars Technica, Numbers seems more like it's a tool for doing the layout of sequences of numbers, vs. doing a lot of CALCULATION of numbers.

(People putting a lot of calculations into formulas inside it end up with LONG pauses while everything processes, even on a high-end Mac. We're talking stuff you'd get instant results back for if it were done in Lotus 1-2-3 on a 66Mhz PC from over a decade ago!)

It's conceivable they might eventually just roll the whole application into Pages at some point, so creating tables would give you the functionality it has.



Hopefully science and engineering majors aren't using Excel for data analysis either.

nadyne
Sep 19, 2007, 04:17 PM
I don't know about anyone else, but I, for one, have some questions for the Microsoft MBU guy...

MacBU girl, not guy. :)

1. Why do you give us Mac users Entourage instead of Outlook? You know the feature gap between the two programs puts Mac-using office workers at a disadvantage.

This question is answered in detail in a post in the Entourage Help Blog: Why did Microsoft replace Outlook for Mac with Entourage? (http://blog.entourage.mvps.org/2007/05/why_did_microsoft_replace_outl.html) It's a long post, but it's a pretty complete history.

2. Why have you not put out VB for Mac OS X? You folks have had years and years to do this, but have not. Again, it puts Mac users at a disadvantage.

This was a very hard decision for us. It's a technical issue. Porting the code to Intel is a big development hit for us, and would have further delayed Office 2008. We know that this is a big pain point for some of our users. We also know that we need to get a Universal Binary out there. We had to decide whether we should ship Office with VBA later, or Office without VBA earlier. We spent a lot of effort trying to figure out if there was something that we could do to meet both needs in a reasonable timeframe, but we couldn't. If you'd like to learn more details about this decision, one of our lead developers wrote a very long, but very thorough, blog post about it: Saying goodbye to Visual Basic (http://www.schwieb.com/blog/2006/08/08/saying-goodbye-to-visual-basic/).

To try to address the scripting needs in Office 2008, we have improved our AppleScript support, and we have Automator support forthcoming as well. Additionally, MacTech magazine made a fantastic resource available: their VBA to AppleScript Transition Guide (http://www.mactech.com/vba-transition-guide/). We know that this doesn't fully solve the problem, but it will help some of our users make a better transition to AppleScript.

3. Where is OneNote for Mac OS X? Or a fully-cross-platform compatible PowerPoint? Or FrontPage (sorry, guys, but it is a part of Office). Or Visio? Again, without these apps, in companies which make use of them, Mac users are put at a disadvantage.

We constantly revisit our Mac application portfolio to determine whether we should add applications to it. For adding new applications, there are three major questions to ask: what user need would the application solve, what other applications are available that might meet the same need, and how difficult is porting the application from the Windows Office team.

As for PowerPoint, we have invested a lot of effort into improving our cross-platform issues. We're well aware of the Red X problem, for example. Cross-platform compatibility is very important to us.

If you guys think you have it bad as a one of a few Mac users in a big Windows organisation, just imagine what life here is like for those of us in MacBU -- there's 180 of us, Microsoft as a whole is over 70,000. I don't think that anyone's in a more Windows-using environment than we are!

Regards,
Nadyne.

nadyne
Sep 19, 2007, 05:16 PM
Well yeah, I did mean "My Day" which as you note uses OS-X sync services. Using the OS-X sync services however is pretty much a given unless the developers are insane enough to try and re-invent that wheel.

Since Sync Services was only introduced in Tiger, users who are still on older versions (older cats?) don't want to be left without a synchronising solution. That's why Entourage 2004 both has its own solution and added Sync Services support in our second service pack.

What I was referring to is the fact that "My Day" is basically just the "today" screen from Pocket PC (now Windows Mobile). It's the same idea, the same format, and floats on your desktop looking for all the world like you glued your iPaq to the screen.

Ahhh, thank you for explaining that! I misunderstood your first post. :)

I would argue that the "My Day" feature has no real utility on a regular desktop as one would tend to have the calendar and email already open and "right there."

Well, maybe it's not a feature that you'll find useful. Different strokes for different folks! Other users have found it to be quite useful so far. When we demoed it at Macworld Expo in January, we got a lot of great feedback from people who said that they wanted to use it immediately. Personally, even though I do have Entourage open all the time, not having to re-open it from its minimised state (or get my iPhone out of my purse) to see where my next meeting is located is really quite nice. If you're coming to Macworld this year, swing by our booth and check it out (and say hi to me if you like) to see what you think about it when you've had the chance to see it in action.

Regards,
Nadyne.

sushi
Sep 19, 2007, 05:35 PM
I agree, I have office for Mac (the very first version).
You are using Mac Office 4.2.1?

Looks like there is a new player in the game for a free office suite...

IBM just came out with Windows and Linux versions of Lotus Symphony (http://symphony.lotus.com/software/lotus/symphony/home.jspa), with a Mac version planned :)
Just went through the demo. This looks very nice.

And I like that they will have a Windows, Linux and Mac version.

At times I get tired of the lack of innovation we see coming out of Microsoft. Yet, for many companies and organizations they don't have a viable alternative. Now maybe we are going to start seeing some. That would be nice.

Virgil-TB2
Sep 19, 2007, 05:41 PM
I didn't realise you were one of the developers.

Apologies if I was rude(ish), I blame anonymity. :)

I should also say that I don't actually use Entourage and try to steer most of our users away from it as it's really way over the top for most people in the University environment I work in.

If your interested in advice for the product at this late stage, I would rather see Entourage integrate with the address book I already have and the calendar I already have in OS-X rather than introduce it's own components.

The "My Day" feature might make sense as a widget instead of as a desktop application and regardless of my slight against the thing and my assertion that it's really a stand-in for future Windows Mobile hooks, a good way to sell it *would* be as a web-capable widget that *is* accessible on your mobile. If I was an Apple user that used Office and Entourage, having the "My Day" thingie show up on my iPhone and synced with my desktop would be a selling feature IMO.

However I would definitely focus on iPhone and not Windows Mobile, it already has more market share.

4God
Sep 19, 2007, 05:44 PM
I'll stick to iWork, thank you.

MikeTheC
Sep 19, 2007, 07:21 PM
MacBU girl, not guy. :)
Whoops. Sorry about that one.

1. Why do you give us Mac users Entourage instead of Outlook? You know the feature gap between the two programs puts Mac-using office workers at a disadvantage.
This question is answered in detail in a post in the Entourage Help Blog: Why did Microsoft replace Outlook for Mac with Entourage? (http://blog.entourage.mvps.org/2007/05/why_did_microsoft_replace_outl.html) It's a long post, but it's a pretty complete history.
Well, the issue I see with this is that you're also laboring for a company that -- truth be told -- would just as soon that the Mac wasn't around. Clearly, if someone at the top were to say "Get Outlook on the Mac!" it would happen.

Now, understand that I didn't pose this question from some nave perspective. You and I and everyone else here probably already are well aware that there's no love loss between us and your employer. I mean, nothing personal, Ms. Mielke, it's not like we know you from Adam or anything. And let's cut through it: Apple's Mac platform still benefits from the legitimacy that MS Office brings to it's corporate customers, and your BU's products are bringing in a not-inconsiderable extra income for Microsoft. I don't really see that Microsoft (not the MacBU, but Microsoft at large) has a vested interest in going much beyond the present group of offerings because it still lets them leverage the Windows platform. In other words, in my view, you folks are basically pawns.


2. Why have you not put out VB for Mac OS X? You folks have had years and years to do this, but have not. Again, it puts Mac users at a disadvantage.
This was a very hard decision for us. It's a technical issue. Porting the code to Intel is a big development hit for us, and would have further delayed Office 2008. We know that this is a big pain point for some of our users. We also know that we need to get a Universal Binary out there.

Having read the Schwieb blog, I can certainly appreciate the complexity involved in getting VB out for the Mac. It really doesn't inspire any confidence that that's how the rest of Microsoft handles their code; nor does it inspire much confidence that they leave you folks to your own devices in an effort to pick up the pieces, without which there wouldn't be anything for the Mac.

3. Where is OneNote for Mac OS X? Or a fully-cross-platform compatible PowerPoint? Or FrontPage (sorry, guys, but it is a part of Office). Or Visio? Again, without these apps, in companies which make use of them, Mac users are put at a disadvantage.
We constantly revisit our Mac application portfolio to determine whether we should add applications to it. For adding new applications, there are three major questions to ask: what user need would the application solve, what other applications are available that might meet the same need, and how difficult is porting the application from the Windows Office team.

Well, obviously having OneNote and Visio would be a benefit. I can tell you specifically that it is a major stumbling block in the corporate world. A friend of mine who works for Earthlink has indicated that those in the office who use Macs have to really struggle with this, since they use Visio for architecting workflows, software development, building layouts -- it spans the gamut -- and every time a Mac user needs to take receipt of one of these files, they either have to get them converted into PDF or have had to replace equipment so they could get an Intel Mac to go the virtualization route. This is certainly not an efficient methodology!

I don't work for Microsoft, and I'm not a coder, but based on what I've been reading, if I had to guess there's probably a major code-base hurdle you folks will have to overcome to get any of the other apps ported. I could say the same thing about the code base for these apps (and perhaps the rest of the range of Microsoft software) that I did about the state of VB, but frankly that's an issue you are in no position to do anything about. So I'll just leave it for the time being.

As for PowerPoint, we have invested a lot of effort into improving our cross-platform issues. We're well aware of the Red X problem, for example. Cross-platform compatibility is very important to us.
Well, while I don't personally use PowerPoint, I know quite a few people who do, and frankly they'd all be happy for any cross-platform improvements you folks can make.

If you guys think you have it bad as a one of a few Mac users in a big Windows organisation, just imagine what life here is like for those of us in MacBU -- there's 180 of us, Microsoft as a whole is over 70,000. I don't think that anyone's in a more Windows-using environment than we are!
Pardon me for being direct, but what in the world ever made you take a job with Microsoft coding software for the Mac? I mean, you couldn't have picked a more diametrically-opposed company or industry employer! (And no, you don't have to answer that. It's rhetorical.)

Lesser Evets
Sep 19, 2007, 09:32 PM
Office ate the big one when iWork '08 came out.

Some people still need Office, but that's hard. iWork is far better for the average user. And it is silly cheaper in price tag.

Jobs did a good one there.

veebs
Sep 19, 2007, 09:37 PM
So do I understand this right? The Ribbon MUST be used, like it or not? There is no 'Use Conventional Toolbars' checkbox or something?

I like Office, I like the way there is no hassle in sharing documents between platforms, I like the way it's existence allows more people to switch to mac without fear of losing all their documents, etc etc.

I don't like the way Office 2004 is an absolute dog speed-wise on my 2.3 GHz MBP. My mother uses Office 1998 on the original iMac (Yes, 233MHz and 128MB Ram) and it FLIES. Way way WAY faster than my own computer, and there isn't much it doesn't do that mine does!

Perhaps someone more knowing than I can explain why every single software company has switched to UB, except MS? :confused: The only PPC apps I have on my computer are the Office Suite!!

Hell, a UB version of Office 2004 and I'd be happy!

macintel4me
Sep 19, 2007, 09:56 PM
So do I understand this right? The Ribbon MUST be used, like it or not? There is no 'Use Conventional Toolbars' checkbox or something?

I like Office, I like the way there is no hassle in sharing documents between platforms, I like the way it's existence allows more people to switch to mac without fear of losing all their documents, etc etc.

I don't like the way Office 2004 is an absolute dog speed-wise on my 2.3 GHz MBP. My mother uses Office 1998 on the original iMac (Yes, 233MHz and 128MB Ram) and it FLIES. Way way WAY faster than my own computer, and there isn't much it doesn't do that mine does!

Perhaps someone more knowing than I can explain why every single software company has switched to UB, except MS? :confused: The only PPC apps I have on my computer are the Office Suite!!

Hell, a UB version of Office 2004 and I'd be happy!
and a UB version of Office 1998 and you'd be even happier!

nadyne
Sep 19, 2007, 10:46 PM
I didn't realise you were one of the developers.
Apologies if I was rude(ish), I blame anonymity. :)

You get a thick skin when you work here. :)

Regards,
Nadyne.

MacPomme
Sep 19, 2007, 10:50 PM
Personally ... Regards, Nadyne.

Hey Nadyne.

I hope you find the time to answer these few questions.

Subject 1. Dropping VB macro support.

Question 1. Apart from coding time, how is it not in Microsoft's interest to provide VB Macros - even if in an Office 2008 "Service Pack" at some future point? (Please do not answer "we may do this" - my question is about Microsoft's interests 'now' and not it's theoretical futures).

Question 2. What is Microsoft's view to the positioning of Mac Office 2008 vs Office 2007 in the corporate world when one product does not include heavily touted items such as VB macros, OneNote etc? If they are not positioned equivalently, what is the benefit to Microsoft through offering one as a subset of the other?

Subject 2. Mac BU

Question 1. What innovative products has the Mac BU brought to market in the last 3-5 years that were/are not available in the Windows product range? (Entourage is a mail client just as Outlook is a mail client)

Question 2. You mentioned in an earlier post in this thread that you and your fellow Mac BU members "want to develop great products for the Mac platform". What is the biggest challenge you, as a business unit, face in meeting your own expectations for yourselves? Can you look in your heart of hearts and say that you have met your own expectations - in every case?

Subject 3. Messenger

Question 1. Why is it's functionality so markedly different to its Windows cousin?

Question 2. What is the benefit to Microsoft in maintaining such product functionality disparacy?

Subject 4. Powerpoint.

Question 1. (and on a light hearted note) I heard many, many years ago that Powerpoint was called "Hoover" internally within Microsoft - because it sucked so much. Does it still have such a derisive nickname internally?

Cheers
MacP

nadyne
Sep 19, 2007, 11:36 PM
Pardon me for being direct, but what in the world ever made you take a job with Microsoft coding software for the Mac? I mean, you couldn't have picked a more diametrically-opposed company or industry employer! (And no, you don't have to answer that. It's rhetorical.)

Well, I'll answer anyway. :)

The short answer is: I like a challenge, and working on one of the most widely-used suites of applications is definitely a challenge.

The longer answer is: Microsoft is the oldest and largest Mac developers. No-one else has been continuously developing for the Mac since it came out. I get to work with a group of about 180 people who all get why I'm a Mac user, and -- even better -- they understand why I want to work on Mac software professionally. The guy in the office across the hall from me (he's the lead tester for PowerPoint:Mac) has been here for more than 10 years. My manager (a senior manager here) has also been here for more than 10 years, and he was a HyperCard developer back in the day. There aren't that many places in the world where you can find such a great concentration of Mac developers with this kind of experience.

I get to work on apps that impact people's daily lives. That's a big challenge, and it's daunting. It's also humbling. If I don't get it right, it has a very real impact on lots of people. I know that the apps that I work on can't be everything to everyone. Pretty much everyone has an opinion about what we should do with our apps, and for anyone who has one opinion, I can find you someone who has the exact opposite opinion. (Yes, even Clippy -- we got feedback which said that someone wanted Clippy back, and that they would pay extra for a version of Office that included him. I've sometimes wondered whether that was just a well-executed practical joke to see if anyone actually reads the feedback sent to us ... ) So navigating all of that is just one of the aspects of this job that makes it a big challenge.

I wasn't looking for a job when Microsoft came knockin'. I was with my previous employer and pretty happy with it. I hadn't updated my resume for at least a couple of years. I'd never considered working for Microsoft. When the recruiter called, though, it sounded intriguing enough for me to have another phone interview with a manager here. And that was intruiging enough for me to agree to an in-person interview, so I flew up to Seattle for it. I spent a day interviewing. Since I wasn't looking for a job and was pretty happy with my previous employer, I felt like I got to make a decision based solely on the people that I met and the work that I would get to do. I liked it, and I'm still liking it now (two years later). Right now, I'm starting the early user experience work on the version after Office 2008. How cool is that?

That was a longer answer than you thought you'd get, I'd wager. :)

Regards,
Nadyne.

nadyne
Sep 20, 2007, 12:02 AM
I hope you find the time to answer these few questions.

Well, I'm not a senior manager or anything, so I'm not sure if you're going to find my answers ultimately satisfying. But I'll give it a go.

Subject 1. Dropping VB macro support.
Question 1. Apart from coding time, how is it not in Microsoft's interest to provide VB Macros - even if in an Office 2008 "Service Pack" at some future point? (Please do not answer "we may do this" - my question is about Microsoft's interests 'now' and not it's theoretical futures).

I'm sorry, maybe it's just that it's late and I've been working all day, but I don't understand what you're asking here.

Question 2. What is Microsoft's view to the positioning of Mac Office 2008 vs Office 2007 in the corporate world when one product does not include heavily touted items such as VB macros, OneNote etc? If they are not positioned equivalently, what is the benefit to Microsoft through offering one as a subset of the other?

I have no idea how marketing happens at the enterprise level, so I can't answer your question.

Subject 2. Mac BU
Question 1. What innovative products has the Mac BU brought to market in the last 3-5 years that were/are not available in the Windows product range? (Entourage is a mail client just as Outlook is a mail client)

We haven't brought new products to the market. Instead, we've focused our innovation on adding Mac-first Mac-only features to our apps. This includes the Project Centre in Entourage and the Notebook Layout View in Word. There's no equivalent to the Project Centre in WinOffice. Notebook Layout View could be considered somewhat analogous to OneNote, although NLV has features that ON does not and ON has features that NLV does not.

Question 2. You mentioned in an earlier post in this thread that you and your fellow Mac BU members "want to develop great products for the Mac platform". What is the biggest challenge you, as a business unit, face in meeting your own expectations for yourselves? Can you look in your heart of hearts and say that you have met your own expectations - in every case?

I think that the biggest challenge is that we can't be everything to everyone. We have to decide to focus our efforts so that we can deliver a more cohesive product. Focusing our efforts means that we're not able to do everything that we want to do, but it also means that we have to be very careful to articulate our goals and do our best to hit it out of the ballpark.

If there is a single software developer who will tell you that they've met their own expectations in every case, I think that they either set immensely low expectations or that they're not telling someone the complete truth. :)

Subject 3. Messenger
Question 1. Why is it's functionality so markedly different to its Windows cousin?

For us, Messenger serves two roles: it is used by consumers who are hooking up to our Messenger servers, and it is used by business users who are hooking up to their company's internal Office Communication Server. To be more efficient in our coding efforts, we try to provide the functionality that is available to both platforms.

Question 2. What is the benefit to Microsoft in maintaining such product functionality disparacy?

Again, I'm not sure what you're asking here, so I can't answer this.

Subject 4. Powerpoint.
Question 1. (and on a light hearted note) I heard many, many years ago that Powerpoint was called "Hoover" internally within Microsoft - because it sucked so much. Does it still have such a derisive nickname internally?

Heh. I haven't heard that one. A couple of guys on the PPT:Mac team have been here for more than ten years, I'll have to ask them tomorrow morning. :)

For the most part, our individual apps don't have internal nicknames or codenames anymore. Office 2008 is version 12, so most people just call it 'twelve'. There was a codename for Office 2008 ('Magnesium'), but I think that I could count on one hand the number of times that I've heard anyone use it. Virtual PC 7 was codenamed 'Taco Cat'. They chose their codenames to be palindromes as a somewhat obscure joke about the endian issues that they faced.

Regards,
Nadyne.

DiamondMac
Sep 20, 2007, 12:30 AM
iwork '08 or Office '08

Which do you think will be better?

:apple::apple::apple:

As you can see by my sig, I am a huge :apple: lover

With that said, I tried and bought iWork and can't stand it so I went back to Office. I hated many changes that Pages had compared to Office. I gave it a few weeks as well but in the end, my specific comfort level rests with the way Office-Word is setup.

I will be buying and sticking with Office '08 when I can get it.

Maybe the first time I didn't choose an Apple product.

MacPomme
Sep 20, 2007, 12:59 AM
Well, I'm not a senior manager or anything ...

Regards,
Nadyne.

Apologies for the trimming of your post ...

I do say, by way of compliment, you write better than most PR companies would if they had a half-way decent brief and were responding here. By 'better' I suppose I mean 'more diplomatically'.

I suppose the question I am fundamentally asking is:

"How is it in Microsoft's interests to omit functionality in its suite of applications offered on the Mac, when its market research (irrespective of OS platform) demands Microsoft invest in the R&D effort to provide this application functionality on its Windows platform?"

And following this same logic, "How is it in the interests of the market, that Microsoft has researched and which research has lead to the development of applications for Windows that have more functionality than their Mac counterparts, that Microsoft provide to the one market disparate product sets across OS platforms?"

A corporate market is a corporate market - regardless of whether the market chooses at a particular point in time to lean towards Windows or to lean toward OS X, Unix, Linux or whatever. A corporate market has its own needs.

A small business market is a small business market - regardless of whether the market chooses at a particular point in time to lean towards Windows or to lean toward OS X, Unix, Linux or whatever. A small business market has its own needs.

A soho market is a soho market - regardless of whether the market chooses at a particular point in time to lean towards Windows or to lean toward OS X, Unix, Linux or whatever. A soho market has its own needs.

You see my point I am sure about markets and their needs.

Yet, Microsoft does not offer some applications, and some functionality within applications, on disparate OS platforms, even though it uses/relies/defends itself with arguments such as (a) we listened to you and have come up with ..., (b) using "xyz" application from Microsoft is designed specifically to meet the needs of your industry, and (c) "We're working to expand the possibilities for computing every day, by continually improving and advancing our current products and embarking on fundamental research that paves the way for tomorrow's breakthroughs." Notice in (c) Microsoft says "computing" not Windows or Office etc.

It may appear that Microsoft on the one hand says "we create products for YOU", and then on the other hand delivers quite different products, and substantially less functionality, on platforms other than its own.

How is that in Microsoft's best interests and in the best interests of an anonymous, amorphous, isotropic and homogenous market? (OK that characterisation is a touch irrelevant ... please read below)

[ :) I know its very early where you are - but its just turning "beer o'clock" here after a hard day in the office ...]

benzslrpee
Sep 20, 2007, 01:05 AM
because Apple is first and foremost still a competitor. it would be dumb to give your competitor an exact same version of your bread-and-butter product. it's not because Microsoft hates Apple, it's just good business.

D1G1T4L
Sep 20, 2007, 01:27 AM
Office ate the big one when iWork '08 came out.

Some people still need Office, but that's hard. iWork is far better for the average user. And it is silly cheaper in price tag.

Jobs did a good one there.

Agreed.

I was waiting for Office but once iWork came out I gave it a try and found that it fit my needs at a price point that was very nice.

ddubbo
Sep 20, 2007, 03:39 AM
Well, I'll answer anyway. :)

The short answer is: I like a challenge, and working on one of the most widely-used suites of applications is definitely a challenge.

The longer answer is: Microsoft is the oldest and largest Mac developers. No-one else has been continuously developing for the Mac since it came out. I get to work with a group of about 180 people who all get why I'm a Mac user, and -- even better -- they understand why I want to work on Mac software professionally. The guy in the office across the hall from me (he's the lead tester for PowerPoint:Mac) has been here for more than 10 years. My manager (a senior manager here) has also been here for more than 10 years, and he was a HyperCard developer back in the day. There aren't that many places in the world where you can find such a great concentration of Mac developers with this kind of experience.

I get to work on apps that impact people's daily lives. That's a big challenge, and it's daunting. It's also humbling. If I don't get it right, it has a very real impact on lots of people. I know that the apps that I work on can't be everything to everyone. Pretty much everyone has an opinion about what we should do with our apps, and for anyone who has one opinion, I can find you someone who has the exact opposite opinion. (Yes, even Clippy -- we got feedback which said that someone wanted Clippy back, and that they would pay extra for a version of Office that included him. I've sometimes wondered whether that was just a well-executed practical joke to see if anyone actually reads the feedback sent to us ... ) So navigating all of that is just one of the aspects of this job that makes it a big challenge.

I wasn't looking for a job when Microsoft came knockin'. I was with my previous employer and pretty happy with it. I hadn't updated my resume for at least a couple of years. I'd never considered working for Microsoft. When the recruiter called, though, it sounded intriguing enough for me to have another phone interview with a manager here. And that was intruiging enough for me to agree to an in-person interview, so I flew up to Seattle for it. I spent a day interviewing. Since I wasn't looking for a job and was pretty happy with my previous employer, I felt like I got to make a decision based solely on the people that I met and the work that I would get to do. I liked it, and I'm still liking it now (two years later). Right now, I'm starting the early user experience work on the version after Office 2008. How cool is that?

That was a longer answer than you thought you'd get, I'd wager. :)

Regards,
Nadyne.
When I started to develop on .Net and SQL server it was a pleasure after all that Eclipce, C++,Oracle,Java crap where you need to make twenty clicks in order to get simple action. The bedrock indeed is week, compared to Linux/Unix platform but development is fantastic. Mac X-Code probably the best Non-MS development suite I encountered, but it still far away from .Net family. The same way as iWork still far away from Office 2007.
People over here sticked with brands and can't understand that your work depends on what you do exactly at your work place, not under which logo is on the wall of your office building.
On the other hand I'm familiar with a guy who was fired from Apple, because refused to use Apple buttonless mouse.

ddubbo
Sep 20, 2007, 03:49 AM
The question for Nadyne.
What didn't you(mac BU i mean) pack Mac Office as a whole and 2008 particularly with MS Access. It's most genius soft Microsoft ever created. At least one third of small and home businesses run apps developed for Access

MattyCurry
Sep 20, 2007, 07:43 AM
I've just has a thought. If microsoft aren't developing a Onenote version for mac.....that would mean that there isn't any macbook tablet format on the development roadmap any time soon.

damn.

I don't have a mac, maybe I shouldn't be posting here, I don't know. I'm waiting out for a macbook small & light enough for me to use on my travels. Apple so far are ignoring me as a potential customer. This, as you can imaging, is quite annoying. Everyone else gets to have pretty computers, but not me it seems.

I might have to buy the HP 2710p instead. dammit.

And also, evryone in theis forum who keeps wibbling about how bad the ribbon is......clearly have never used it the instant access to smartart formatting options & instant rollover rendering of styles alone are worth the learning curve.

elppa
Sep 20, 2007, 07:47 AM
And also, evryone in theis forum who keeps wibbling about how bad the ribbon is......clearly have never used it the instant access to smartart formatting options & instant rollover rendering of styles alone are worth the learning curve.

But a lot of them have used the palettes in Office:2004 and iWork '08 which take up less than half the space and are better suited to widescreen displays.

MattyCurry
Sep 20, 2007, 08:08 AM
But a lot of them have used the palettes in Office:2004 and iWork '08 which take up less than half the space and are better suited to widescreen displays.

I'm on a 17inch widescrenn HP nx9420 here, and in the Excel Home ribbon i've got access to: Clipboard, Font, Alignment, Number, Styles, Cells & Editing. It works just dandily.

In Word, I've gone from having drab black & white documents ( or even worse the company.dot formatted documents!), to having incredibly nice, clean elegant documents, all because of the Styles section, giving instant access to document markup, rather than hiding it within a pullout section.

In powerpoint, having the 3d Rendering of graphs, with what looks remarkably like specular highlighting, giving them this great sheeny rubberised feel, makes spectators jaws drop when i present. The only problem now, as more people use Office 2007, is that everyones doing it.

sushi
Sep 20, 2007, 09:30 AM
Well, I'm not a senior manager or anything, so I'm not sure if you're going to find my answers ultimately satisfying. But I'll give it a go.
Thanks for your candor and insight.

What is really frustrating with Office, is that there are so many variances.

For example, the Mac version does not have Outlook and Access. So for those of use who work in a corporate environment, we cannot purchase Macs because the Mac version of Office does not have these two key apps.

If you want to sell more copies of Mac Office in the corporate world, then you need Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Access and Outlook. And these Mac versions need to be 100% compatible with the PC versions.

The question for Nadyne.
What didn't you(mac BU i mean) pack Mac Office as a whole and 2008 particularly with MS Access. It's most genius soft Microsoft ever created. At least one third of small and home businesses run apps developed for Access
Access is very popular in the PC world. I do not understand why Access has not been added to the Mac Office suit.

Also, if I purchase a copy of iWork for example, I can run it under Japanese, English, Korean, etc. But with Office, I am stuck with English. Why is that? Why can't Office change languages like many other great apps out there?

Maybe is it the way Microsoft is organized with the Mac BU.

Maybe a better model would be the Office BU with Windows and Mac subdivisions so that the Office suit would be the same on both platforms.

Please remember that a silent majority of Mac users out there use Mac Office to be compatible with their PC using counterparts, or between home and work. I would imagine that if you focused your efforts this way, sales would increase substantially. Right now it is getting harder to justify upgrading to new versions of Mac Office. For compatibility it is easier to just run Parallels and use Office 2007 for Windows. I mean why should I even bother with Office 2008, when I can run Office 2007 and have full compatibility including Access, Outlook, OWA, etc.?

Nadyne I hope this makes sense. Please feel free to PM me if you have questions.

cfountain72
Sep 20, 2007, 10:06 AM
I have to disagree with some of the critical comments of The Ribbon. I have been a Mac and PC user for several years, and have used Office for Mac, for XP (2003 and now 2007). While I am sure that hardcore users of previous versions may find it frustrating, I think light to moderate users will love it. The biggest advantage is that it makes many of the more obscure features built into the Office programs much more apparent. Indeed, I am now using some features and formulas in Excel that I was not even aware existed, mainly because they were previously bottled up in two-step, drop-down menus.

I can certainly empathize with those who have grown accustomed to the older verisons and know exactly where everything is. But speaking as someone who has '03 and '07 on my PC work desktop, I always reach for 07.

As far as the iWork vs Office argument, iWork is a great value for the money and will meet practically all home user's, and even some small business user's needs. But at this point in their respective development, if you need to do some heavy lifting, Office is still the way to go.

Regards,
Chris

nadyne
Sep 20, 2007, 11:33 AM
"How is it in Microsoft's interests to omit functionality in its suite of applications offered on the Mac, when its market research (irrespective of OS platform) demands Microsoft invest in the R&D effort to provide this application functionality on its Windows platform?"

You're asking big strategic question that are well outside my area of expertise. I think you'll have to go several levels over my head to get an answer. So I'm not sure that I can really help you out here.

When it's time to consider bringing new applications into our portfolio, we have to consider several questions, including the user need, what other applications might meet that user need, the number and type of users who are seeking a solution to this need, and the difficulty of porting the applications from Windows to Mac. For example, if a Windows application is coded in C# and his highly dependent on Windows APIs for providing its functionality, then porting it is going to be a lot harder than an application that's coded in C or C++.

I've just has a thought. If microsoft aren't developing a Onenote version for mac.....that would mean that there isn't any macbook tablet format on the development roadmap any time soon.

I like that you guys think that I know about the Apple hardware roadmap! We all know how secretive a company Apple is, we're on a site called MacRumors. :)

OneNote is used for much more than just tablet PCs. From all accounts (I haven't used it myself, since it would require me to boot up the Windows box that sits headless under my desk at the office), it's a useful app for taking notes.

Maybe a better model would be the Office BU with Windows and Mac subdivisions so that the Office suit would be the same on both platforms.

That's how it used to be, before the MacBU was created ten years ago. There were still application disparities at that point, and ... well, let's just say that this is the group that brought about Word 6. The problem is, Office:Mac is a very small fish when compared to Windows Office. When the beancounters have to make financial decisions, they look at raw numbers. They see that Office:Mac is a much smaller team, has many fewer users, and makes a lot less revenue than Windows Office, and so the Mac version just doesn't get a lot of resources. Being in a separate division means that we are fully in charge of our resources. We have a great relationship with our counterparts on the Windows Office team, and are in close communication with them about our shared goals. The Windows PowerPoint team is in the same building as the PowerPoint:Mac team, so I just run upstairs when I have a question for them, and they come down to my office when they have something for me. We share information. I see all of the results for their usability studies, for example, and they see ours too.

Regards,
Nadyne.

MattyCurry
Sep 20, 2007, 11:58 AM
OneNote is used for much more than just tablet PCs. From all accounts (I haven't used it myself, since it would require me to boot up the Windows box that sits headless under my desk at the office), it's a useful app for taking notes.




You should so try it. It's the best thing since sliced bread.

Things onenote can do:

1) Automatic OCR when you paste in an image
2) Take notes of a meeting whilst recording the meeting, and onenote will link your notes with the time in the audio recording you took them
3) calculation of any quick sums you need to do, in page.

and the whole damn thing is searchable

it really is far to good for it's own benefit.


Although, and here's another thought, I thought that the Mac world would be crying out for something like Groove, no? All those ad agencies with distributed staff and very little grasp on the concept of cvs's?

Virgil-TB2
Sep 20, 2007, 05:06 PM
&Hey Nadyne ... Question 1. Apart from coding time, how is it not in Microsoft's interest to provide VB Macros - even if in an Office 2008 "Service Pack; at some future point?... I can't speak for Naydyne obviously, but as someone who has had to use and support MS Office for Mac at my University ever since it was available, I can say that for the vast majority of our users ...

no scratch that, for ALL of our users, the announcement that they were leaving out the VB stuff was met with a resounding cheer. :)

This is exactly one of those features that people refer to when they talk about how bloated the Office suite is in general.

Other than hard core, (mostly windows based) business users, VB scripting is just not used. Nadyne probably has the stats, but a very very small share of the market needs or uses this and those that do are almost exclusively windows shops wanting to stick to their Windows solution and yet still have it work on the four or five Macs in the organisation. If those shops *started* with a cross-platform solution in the first place, then the MBU would not have to mess up a perfectly good Mac application with a giant kludge just so Windows users can experience seamless interoperability.

If automation functionality *is* needed in Office, it would be much preferred to use the Macs built in scripting and built in automation services than it is to have an ancient VB technology bolted on to Office.

superfunkomatic
Sep 20, 2007, 07:00 PM
user interface changes don't hide the fact that there are fundamental issues with how the programs work or how people use them.

the interface creates far to many selections and options, now they are just more clutter and presented visually. i don't think this is a significant progression or evolution, just a shine on a turd - old software with a new face.

Rodimus Prime
Sep 20, 2007, 07:34 PM
I see a lot of people complaining about the ribbon. I thought it was stupid when I first heard about it. Heck it was weird for me when I first started using office 07.
Now after while of using it I find it easier to use than the old office. It a lot less trouble getting access to a lot of the little settings and formating that used to royal pain to get to. The new ways fonts are handles is great. You get to see instant results of it changing sizes. No doing it then looking at the results. You get an instant picture of it. Reduces the time it takes to find what you want.


The ribbon once you get over it really does make it better. Office has had so much stuff added over the years that the menus where getting over loaded.

Now my one complaint about Office 07 is the new .docx formate and that is only because most people I have to send my word files to can not handle it so have to save it as .doc formate Now it will not be to much longer before I am not going to have to that.

Really people give the ribbon a real chances. Really complaining about it now is like people complaining about how apple forces all menus to be at the top of the screen.
You are complaining because it is different.