Hello All, I used to be a big fan of Microsoft Excel and Powerpoint, but I was using an old version of Office on a PC. Now I have migrated to Mac and gotten Microsoft Office 2008 for Mac, and the new versions of Powerpoint and Excel are completely awful. What is causing all these problems? When were these problems introduced - 2008, 2004, or earlier? Are the Mac versions of Office simply worse than the PC versions? And most importantly: What version should I downgrade to? Should I be running Office in Windows under Fusion? Or should I ditch Microsoft entirely (which I would truly love to do) and start using some competing product for my slideshow and spreadsheet needs? Here are the problems I am having with the new versions, from most obnoxious to only moderately obnoxious: Excel: 1. There is absolutely no way to make error bars derive their height from a column of data. Error bars must be a fixed size or a fixed percentage. This means it is totally impossible to do error bars that indicate the standard deviation, interquartile range, or 95% confidence interval. This feature was present in the old version of Excel, they simply removed it. Was Microsoft intentionally trying to make this software useless to scientists? 2. There is no way to select one column and call it the x-values and another column and call it the y-values (when making a chart). You have to select two columns at once, and Excel will guess which is which. And they better be neighboring columns, too. 3. The chart options and formats menus/dialog boxes are completely different than they used to be, and much more restrictive. I can't find the tab where you enter the chart title, the axis titles, and check a box for whether you want a legend or not. 4. All the charts are really incredibly ugly. They are full of shadows, bubbles, rounded edges, bevels, and bright colors. There is no way to make plain graphs. 5. I can't get the page-break preview dotted lines to disappear. They are distracting, I don't want to see them. Powerpoint: 1. Everything in Powerpoint is now hideously ugly, and you can't make it simple. The problems are similar to the aesthetic problems in Excel, but fifty times worse. Every table, every arrow, and every autoshape is now 3D, puffy, brightly colored, rounded on the edges, and has shadows and reflections of light on its metallic textured surface. You cannot make a normal black arrow, or a normal table made of straight, rectangular, black lines. You cannot make a plain red hexagon, it will look bubbly and metallic. I'm sure the people at Microsoft thought that simple things looked archaic and unsophisticated, but they completely failed to realize that you need to keep the simple option available. The new aesthetic that they impose on all Powerpoints looks completely childish, unprofessional, and silly. 2. When I open an old presentation (saved long ago with my PC), Powerpoint modifies the original file without warning, without asking, and there is no way to override it. I have to carefully make a copy of every .ppt presentation before I double click on it, because double clicking and letting Powerpoint do its horrific dark magic will irreparably change the file. That is not okay. On multiple occasions, I have had to use Time Machine to restore .ppt files that I accidentally opened without copying and Powerpoint then mangled. It changes the slide layouts so that arrows don't line up, pictures overflow the slide, tables turn ugly and colorful, fonts change size, and so on. Both/All Office for Mac applications: 1. Expose and Spaces do not work, there are lots of annoying bugs with window management in these programs. I have found a few things that I like, but I will gladly give them up for a good downgrade that addresses these problems: 1. Powerpoint can now export as images really easily. 2. Excel gives the syntax of every function in a pop-up box every time you type it. That is helpful. That's it. Good work, Microsoft. Your new versions created 8 big new problems that weren't present in the old versions, and you added 2 tiny features which I slightly appreciate. Please help. Advise. Suggest. What is the last version before these problems? Is there some way that I am not seeing to enter x- and y-data in Excel, or make things non-ugly in both? Thanks.