iWork '06 Wishlist - Keynote, Pages, Numbers?

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by Epicurus, Oct 16, 2005.

  1. Epicurus macrumors 6502

    Epicurus

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    #1
    A new year is coming and with it a new iteration of iWork (and iLife). Personally I use Keynote a lot and have high hope for the next version. Pages was a real disappointment, so there is a lot of room to be made up. Also, there is a good amount of buzz around a spreadsheet app being added (Numbers). So what do you want to be added to iWork '06?

    Keynote 3
    Watching Jobs' last few presentations I've noticed new transitions not included in Keynote 2 (like a vertical blinds transition). I'd like to see some new standard themes in Keynote 3 as well. Once feature that isn't really supported out of the box is decent iPod integration. By this I mean being able to load a Keynote presentation onto an iPod and then use the iPod AV outputs to run the slideshow with a projector. With the new remote control and dock, this should be a little easier (although having an IR remote might not be the best option). Since the new iPod support video, this sort of Keynote-iPod integration should also support animated transitions.

    Motion graphics and moving templates would also be a welcome addition to Keynote, especially for kiosk displays. Being able to add animated text (flashing, wiggling, changing fonts randomly, etc.) would be cool too. These features might not be great for formal presentations, but they would be a welcome addition. Basic equation support via a LaTeX 3rd party app is fine the way it is, but integrated support for LaTeX equations (and possibly more) would be great. Beyond a new assortment of themes and transition, a wider selection of pictures and objects for Keynote (like those found in /Library/Application Support/Keynote/Image Library). Having a set of chess pieces is nice, but how about images of PowerBooks or iPods or other computer related objects.

    Number 1
    As for Numbers, basic spreadsheet features are a must. The graphing/plotting features included in Keynote now are just too limited. Beyond simply mirroring Excel, though, Numbers should be able to call upon the graphing capabilities of the Grapher app already part of OS X. This would allow Numbers to work with discrete data sets like Excel and functions like Mathematica (although probably not nearly as well on either front given this would be a version 1 product). Hopefully, though, Apple learned its lesson about releasing software before its ready after Pages all but killed iWork '05.

    Pages 2
    Pages needs the most work. I'm voting for more LaTeX support for text layout (buried underneath a standard Apple GUI, of course), tight integration with Numbers for graphs, plus better Word importing/exporting. the .doc format has moved to XML and is more open now, so support should be easy to add. Pages could also benefit from a larger template library. Keynote has the benefit of a large user community creating new themes every day, but Pages is left out of this. Apple needs to step in and fill the gap.

    Even with a new app like Numbers, I really hope iWork '06 stays under $99 (or at $79 like now if possible). I already have a feeling that iLife might hit $99 if they add a remote, and I don't like how that bodes for iWork.
     
  2. macbaseball macrumors 6502a

    macbaseball

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    Feb 27, 2005
    Location:
    Northern California
    #2
    I bought iWork and used it for one project (A brochure) and haven't used it since. It turned out good, but the app wasn't very responsive. I don't think I'm going to buy the new version, as Microsoft Office does everything I need. (Well except making good brochures)
     
  3. hyperpasta macrumors 6502a

    hyperpasta

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    Aug 1, 2005
    Location:
    New Jersey
    #3
    I want it standard on all new Macs a la iLife, replacing Appleworks completely, like they said it would. Not that I care about paying $80, but I would want to be able to put it on another Mac and know it will work. Like iDVD. Some people wouldn't buy it, but I can take a project and burn it on any Mac I want.
     
  4. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

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    Location:
    Palookaville
    #4
    Keynote: More/better transitions would be nice, but frankly we've almost got too many now, which if you're not careful can result in severe transition overload in a presentation. Keynote presentations already wow audiences accustomed to dull and clunky PowerPoint, so is more temptation really a good thing? I wonder. Anyhow, I'd like to see the process of creating templates simplified. As it is, I'm never quite sure how to go about getting the effect I want, and it isn't clear how to create or even alter those nice shadowed graphics placeholders that come in the canned templates. At least let us resize them!

    Pages: Just about the only reason I ever go to Word is to convert text to tables. Pages needs this feature badly! In fact the entire table handling part of Pages needs to be overhauled. It's very slow and I still haven't worked out how to align the text within the cells properly (not that Word is much better at this). Also, we need more control over line weights in tables and throughout Pages. Why the minimum size is 1 pt. mystifies me. We need half point and hair-lines at least!

    Something doesn't seem to be working quite right with Sections. When I start a new section in Pages, it wants to continue the previous section's header, footer and page numbering. This is just the opposite of what I usually want, and it isn't clear how make the sections discontinuous. Even when I make this selection in the Inspector, Pages still wants to continue the header and footer from the previous section.
     
  5. Bear macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2002
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    Sol III - Terra
    #5
    I filed a bug on Pages not having a "Convert to Tables" feature. AppleWorks has it. Hopefully te next version will have the feature.

    As for the control over line weights, submit a suggestion to Apple. If another program you use has that control, refer to that program as an example of what you want.

    I agree that Pages still need a bunch of features, however for a first release, it's pretty good. And except for the occasional convert to table, I haven't had to use another program since I got iWork.

    If the iWork spreadsheet application (Cells? Sheets? Numbers?) starts off with being able to replace the AppleWorks spreadsheet function, that will be an okay start. Hopefully it will have some of the features that AppleWorks is missing. However, if I no longer need AppleWorks loaded on my system, that be a decent start.

    Other people may disagree as to what a decent start for a spreadsheet program would be, however, remember, if Apple tried to wait until it had all the featuress of Excel, it would take years before we saw it. I think Apple did the right thing with the first version of Pages. Just as long as they keep up what they're doing, iWork '06 will be nice to get and by iWork '07 or iWork '08 a lot of people won't need other programs. (Some won't need anything else with iWork '06.)
     
  6. JFreak macrumors 68040

    JFreak

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    Location:
    Tampere, Finland
    #6
    i'd like "numbers" with basic excel compatibility. no bells'n'whistles and no database connectivity. basically just convert apple works spreadsheet into a modern osx native app that works well.

    if you give it a thought, apple could very well improve keynote graphing features a little, and then offload all graphing work from "numbers" to keynote engine. they don't even have to open keynote if they implement it properly (which they most probably would), but why re-invent the wheel here -- just the same way, pages could offload all table management to "numbers".

    don't you just love component-based software? ;)
     
  7. ipacmm macrumors 65816

    ipacmm

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    Jun 17, 2003
    Location:
    Cincinnati, OH
    #7
    I bought it for that same reason, but I haven't used it again after that first time, I really liked it...just don't use it. I hope in the next version I will use it more.
     
  8. Vanilla macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2002
    Location:
    Atlanta, GA
    #8
    I have steadily increased my usage of Keynote over PowerPoint and really enjoy it bar one annoying issue.

    I would really like to see the ability to perform changes (resizing etc.) on groups of objects. In PowerPoint if you select a number of objects and then resize one of them, they all resize. Unless I'm missing something you cannot do the same in Keynote ,which if you have a number of similar objects that you need to tweak is a real pain.

    Vanilla
     
  9. dogsbody macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2004
    Location:
    Channel Islands
    #9
    Once you have them all selected, go to the 'ruler' pane in the Inspector and change the height/width values. I don't have my PB here so I don't know if you can change percentages, but I have done it with absolutes before on groups of photos.

    hth.
     
  10. AdamZ macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2004
    #10
    Translucent Pallete Windows

    Please give up Inspector windows that we can see our work thru just like the "adjust" in iPhoto.

    Also, I would like to see all the hard work I put into animations and builds not get wasted when I export to quicktime. To have to set a general time for ALL builds really suxs.
     
  11. balamw Moderator

    balamw

    Staff Member

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    Aug 16, 2005
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    New England
    #11
    Your emphasis on LaTeX definitely comes from a physics_gopher's pov. ;). I too would really love to see Apple (or anyone for that matter) do a WYSIWYG LaTeX, but am not sure that iWork should be it.

    I also don't tend to think that Pages is as bad as many people make it out to be, you have to remember that it is not positioned as a Word killer, it seems to be intended as an alternative for Word/Publisher to do what 80% of people do: flyers, resumes, letters, booklets, etc... For that I thnk it does fairly well, though it could be faster, and more styles would be nice. I tend to use Pages for anything under 3 pages or so, Word for the bigger documents.

    Keynote is actually quite good, so it's too bad that I don't give enough presentations where I don't already draw on a bunch of older PPT slides.

    If Numbers could just give me a charting tools that produced better XY plots than Excel XP does on Windows, I'd be very happy. This is about the extent of my need for a spreadsheet. Simple data manipulation and plots.

    B
     
  12. Josh396 macrumors 65816

    Josh396

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    Oct 16, 2004
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    Peoria/Chicago, IL
    #12
    As someone else mentioned I would just love to see it bundled with new Macs. Basic upgrades would be great and I'd like to see Numbers as well. I'm sure it's coming at MWSF so I'll just have to wait to see what Apple does with it.
     
  13. vrabz macrumors member

    vrabz

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    Oct 12, 2005
    Location:
    Madison, WI
    #13
    iLife '06

    1. Front Row
    2. Front Row
    3. Front Row
    4. Keynote
    5. "Numbers"
    6. Pages
     
  14. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

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    #14
    I don't want to have Pages, or the forthcoming spreadsheet, to become a feature pig. This is the underlying problem with Microsoft's approach -- their idea of improving something is to cram in more features without giving much thought to who will actually use them, or to clear implementation. So you get berserk button bars and wizards. This is the virtue of Pages as it stands now. What it does, it does clearly and easily for the most part.
     
  15. dogsbody macrumors regular

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    Jun 13, 2004
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    Channel Islands
    #15
    When you export to Quicktime you can set the preferences to be a self-playing slideshow (or whichever one greys out the input boxes) - that way all your build times and timing are preserved.

    I have used this many times to create fillers/title sequences for movies etc in iMovie. It works bloody well!
     
  16. Vanilla macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2002
    Location:
    Atlanta, GA
    #16
    Yeah I know that trick but it's pretty limiting. If the selected objects are all the same dimensions to start with, then scrolling up or down the height or width settings in the Ruler pane does indeed work. The constrain flag helps big time as well.

    However, if the objects are different sizes/shapes then it doesn't work at all well. It simply sets all the objects to the same height or width first and then continues to scroll.

    It's not a showstopper but it is irritating. So many times I find myself selecting a bunch of objects and then going to a corner and dragging inwards (or outwards) expecting all the objects to increase (or decrease) in dimensions en masse only to find that just the one object has changed....
     
  17. Bear macrumors G3

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    Jul 23, 2002
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    Sol III - Terra
    #17
    Actually, you have a good point. Some more fetaures in Pages would be good. Well thought out and implemented ones.

    And that's another reason for Apple to not release something with all the features initially. The released Pages and now have feedback on what fetaures people want. They can make a prioritized list based on requests.

    And they can do the same thing with a spreadsheet application. Get it out there.. get feedback..add what features that people are requesting the most.
     
  18. Epicurus thread starter macrumors 6502

    Epicurus

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    #18
    I have to agree with the previous posts that one of the single biggest frustrations with Keynote is the inability to scale multiple objects simultaneously. I can't even begin to count the number of hours I've wasted trying to brute force my way around this one. It certainly should be one of the top priorities with Keynote 3.

    And yes, I have a strong personal bias towards LaTeX. Nevertheless, it is an open standard with real strength in document creation. While most technical journals in physics, engineering, and mathematics have embraced LaTeX, even to the point of denying the use of Word, no major software player has made any inroads into the community. If Apple where to step up and deliver even a Pages 1.0 quality LaTeX app, I believe it would be greatly received. I do admit, however, that it is highly unlikely that Apple would do this. :rolleyes:
     
  19. Epicurus thread starter macrumors 6502

    Epicurus

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    #19
    I really didn't like it when Pages turned out to be so rough around the edges. I've come to expect a certain amount of polish from Apple, and Pages let me down. If that was just the start of a trend then we're going to have more serious issues down the road. I think Apple learned its lesson from Pages and the miserable iWork sales, though. Rumors about Numbers have been bubbling for months now which leads me to believe that Apple has:
    (1) been very close to releasing Numbers for some time, and
    (2) they're keeping a watchful eye on message boards like this trying to guague the needs and wants of their target market.

    Pages came out of the blue (even though an Appleworks replacement had to be in the pipeline somewhere, I sure didn't see an app like Pages in the cards) and really didn't make the impact Apple had expected. iWork was certainly no iLife.

    If Apple wants to make iWork some sort of beta software testing ground, then they should be nice about it and charge less than $79. I can justify that for Keynote alone since I use it several times a week, but it's a hard pill to swallow for most.
     
  20. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

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    #20
    I'm not sure what you mean by "rough around the edges." As I said before, what Pages does, I think it does well. It could use a few features, but then again, what application can't? You also can't really expect iWork to be another iLife, given that at least to date, Apple has chosen not to bundle iWork with any Macs and they bundle iLife with every Mac. We can speculate about why they made this decision, but I don't think any of us really knows. As for the price: cheap. Very cheap, for what you get. Just Keynote alone in its first incarnation cost $99. So now you get Keynote 2.0 and Pages for $20 less? Is this is a problem? :confused:
     
  21. paulypants macrumors 6502a

    paulypants

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    #21
    Make Homepage a standalone app, somewhat like RapidWeaver...
     
  22. Epicurus thread starter macrumors 6502

    Epicurus

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    #22
    About the price, Keynote 2 was a nice upgrade from the original (for which I gladly paid $99 for way back when). For me, the features 2 added were worth the price without question (Pages was a free bonus gift as far as I was concerned). Most likely I would have been a little bothered by a second investment of $99, but I would have done it.
    Now Keynote has become a really nice, mature product. There are very few additions I really want, and only a few features I'd like to see for fun. Unless they do a complete overhaul, $79 seems to be at the top end of what I'd drop without question (for Keynote alone). Numbers intrigues me, so if it is a polished product (I'll be checking this out at an Apple store first) I'd be okay paying $99 for iWork '06. If Pages is up to spec (I'll get to what that means in a sec), then maybe a $100+ price tag is justified. I judge the product on what I will get out of it. If all I'll be using is Keynote and they're charging $149 for the iWork bundle, that would be a hard pill for me to swallow. If I anticipate using Keynote and Numbers and to a lesser extent Pages, then I might talk myself into paying $149. Of course, I'm hoping it comes in under $99 simply to spare my wallet.

    As for Pages, there are so many things I want to do with it that I can't get it to do the way I want!! Let me count the ways:
    Table controls are awkward.
    Slow to respond when moving tables around (very slow overall compared to all other Apple apps I run including iPhoto with 11,000+ photos).
    No custom text wrap options.
    Setting up figures with captions is awkward.
    Doing real page layout like in PageMaker or Publisher is poor.
    No way to see facing pages in order to set up "across the fold" layouts.
    No group resize option for scaling multiple objects simultaneously.
    etc.

    I will give credit where credit is due. Pages does a lot right. What strikes me though, is that most of what it does well it borrowed from Keynote. The features that set it apart from Keynote are the weakest of the bunch. That's all I'm talking about.

    Finally, the iLife vs. iWork bit. I was not comparing the two products in terms of distribution or range of applicability for the average consumer. I was commenting on the fact that iLife is, thanks to being available for so long, a very nice set of products that each do what they do very well. The same can be said for iWork, but I feel Pages doens't quite meet the standards of its brethren. Perhaps I'm spoiled :)o), but I was expecting just a little bit more to put it over the top.
     
  23. dogsbody macrumors regular

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    #23
    Ah ok - I'd only tried it on similar objects! I know what you mean about trying to resize groups though - ashamed to admit that it's much easier on Office.... :eek:
     
  24. finalcoolman macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2005
    #24
    In 06 I'd like to see them get rid of iWork and bundle the former iWork apps into iLife and just boost the price to $99 from the $79 its at now. It's stupid to have two sepearate suites like that.
     
  25. OCOTILLO macrumors regular

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    Mar 25, 2005
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    Houston, TX
    #25
    I would be happy......

    I would be happy if Pages was as easy to use as my 1994 copy of MS Publisher Ver. 2.0
     

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