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Review: Sun StarOffice 7

michael posted more than 11 years ago | from the openoffice-rules dept.

Sun Microsystems 476

ValourX writes "Here's the Internet's first comprehensive review of Sun's new StarOffice 7 suite. With the ability to export to PDF and SWF and greatly improved conversion filters, Sun's $80 office suite is more than a match for the upcoming ultra-expensive Microsoft Office System 2003."

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ok (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#7006769)

ok

Other Office Apps (2, Informative)

rkz (667993) | more than 11 years ago | (#7006771)

I am suprised that Sun's Star Office recieves so much attention from slashdot [slashdot.org] and the open sauce community.

Ability Office [ability.com] offers similar functionality in most cases, it can export to PDF, open all MS Office file types and doesn't use a ugly as hell windowing toolkit.

It can even be run on linux. Star Office is not very similar to Open Office at all, sun kept the best parts to themselves (database app) so why are they seen to be *cooler* to open source zealots then other perfectly good office sweets?

Also its cheaper than StarOffice, Ability only costs 69.95 [element5.com]

Re:Other Office Apps (1)

Kenja (541830) | more than 11 years ago | (#7006808)

99$ for Ability VS Free for Star

That would seem to sum it up.

Re:Other Office Apps (2, Informative)

SnowDeath (157414) | more than 11 years ago | (#7007052)

Only one problem with that statement - StarOffice is *not* free, it is $79.95 - OpenOffice is the free one.

Re:Other Office Apps (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#7006810)

Mmmmm... office sweets *drool*

Re:Other Office Apps (5, Insightful)

Kedisar (705040) | more than 11 years ago | (#7006811)

But OOo only costs $0.00.

Seriously, I use Windows and OOo, and there isn't anything I can't do with them as far as I know. I've never been like "Damn! If I only I was using Word!" Now I know there are probably a few features Word has that OOo doesn't, but chances are, Ability and Star Office don't have them either.

By the way, spell checked with OOo! ;)

**Prepares for anti-OOo flames**

Yes but adversity builds character! (4, Funny)

Futurepower(R) (558542) | more than 11 years ago | (#7007003)


I've never been like "Damn! If I only I was using Word!"

You'll have to agree that the quirkiness of Word is character building. You don't have that in OO.

Re:Other Office Apps (5, Informative)

questionlp (58365) | more than 11 years ago | (#7006816)

I believe the reason why they keep the database application in StarOffice "to themselves" and not release it with OpenOffice.org is that Adabas is commercial software and Sun had to license it. They can't turn around and open source it or releasing it with OpenOffice.org... at least without paying an ungodly sum to the maker of Adabas.

Re:Other Office Apps (1)

watzinaneihm (627119) | more than 11 years ago | (#7007011)

That should be easily fixed someime soon since Sun has chosen [eweek.com] Berkeley DB as their DB of choice for use by their apps.

Re:Other Office Apps (1)

Roadkills-R-Us (122219) | more than 11 years ago | (#7007041)

So why not use postgresql or mysql? If Adabas is still a traditionally licensed product, why on earth try to include it in a low cost alternative to MS:Office, when there are high quality open source alternatives?

Re:Other Office Apps (1)

hpavc (129350) | more than 11 years ago | (#7007088)

Adabas will do those and oracle and etc etc very nicely

Re:Other Office Apps (4, Insightful)

CommandNotFound (571326) | more than 11 years ago | (#7006888)

Well, first of all, I've never even heard of Ability Office. While I'm not omniscient, with the years of Slashdot and Freshmeat perusal under my belt I'd wager that if I haven't heard of it, many here have not, as well.

That's the first hurdle. The second is long-term availability. StarOffice gives me (and more importantly, my wife) a solid office suite whose file formats I can guarantee will be around as long as I can compile its little brother, OpenOffice.org. You can't say that about many other non-MS office suites or word processors. Two years ago I made my wife switch from WordPerfect 8 for Linux to StarOffice for the same reason. Corel pretty much dropped the product after the woeful WP 2000 suite.

Ability might be the greatest thing ever, but odds are that they will be out of business trying to make money by competing with MS in the the office suite market. I for one do not want to have to migrate my documents again when this happens, when I have to move to another product. SO/OOo gives me some security from that event.

Re:Other Office Apps (2, Insightful)

Roadkills-R-Us (122219) | more than 11 years ago | (#7007063)

As soon as I realized that the Linux "port" required Wine, I lost interest. Wine is OK, but there's no way I'm going to base our company-wide office suite on it.

Re:Other Office Apps (1)

frission (676318) | more than 11 years ago | (#7006911)

definitely agree, if it wasn't for my office relying heaving on Access, we could easily switch to linux for desktop computing. is there ANY access equivalent, some stuff is just a lot easier to do copy/pasting records instead of select * into x where blah,and blah and blah, and blah or blah

Re:Other Office Apps (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#7007100)

OpenOffice.org actually does have a database application. It is not listed as one of the main components, but it can be accessed as Data Sources on the Tools menu from another OpenOffice.org application. It allows creating and editing tables directly and constructing SQL queries. It supports MySQL, text, spreadsheet, and address book databases, as well as anything that uses ODBC, such as PostgreSQL.

Re:Other Office Apps (1)

Eric Damron (553630) | more than 11 years ago | (#7006942)

"...so why are they seen to be *cooler* to open source zealots then other perfectly good office sweets?"

Ability Office 2002
System Requirements:

Windows 95/98/ME/NT/2000/XP
Processor: Pentium class or higher recommended
40 MB hard disk space required during download and setup
Less than 25 MB for full installation after setup
32MB RAM
Mouse or other Windows pointer device

My prefered operating system does not seem to be listed.

Re:Other Office Apps (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#7006988)

There is an Office v.X also so I assume you are referring to Linux.

Re:Other Office Apps (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#7006999)

http://www.ability.com/linux/abilitylinux.php

you flamming fag learn to use the intaweab.

Re:Other Office Apps (5, Insightful)

Roadkills-R-Us (122219) | more than 11 years ago | (#7007090)

Look for the words "Linux Port".

Click there.

Notice it uses Wine.

Port, huh?

[Said with XXX-rated cigar in hand:]
I guess it all depends on what your definition of "port" is.

Re:Other Office Apps (-1, Offtopic)

Follis (702842) | more than 11 years ago | (#7006995)

Doesn't sauce spoil if left open?

Re:Other Office Apps (1)

swordboy (472941) | more than 11 years ago | (#7007096)

What irks me is that Corel's stock was beaten down to the point that it would have been a no-brainer for Sun to pick them up in a stock swap deal. The dilution would have been minor and the result would have been a tremendous set of products [corel.com] .

Why Sun didn't buy Corel is boggling. The products would go hand-in-hand with their Mad Hatter distro.

Sigh...

POOP on YOU FP (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#7006772)

Fristy!

Awww FUCK - - I FALED IT (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#7006796)

I am no longer a man. ARRRRGH TALK LIKE A PIRaaat!

Re:Awww FUCK - - I FALED IT (-1)

donald knuth troll (682408) | more than 11 years ago | (#7006841)

One time, a pirate was arrested and put on trial for raping a girl.

The pirate protested: "Aaargh, your honor, I was just burying me family jewles!"

www.fp hello world (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#7006778)

hy slm

Re:www.fp hello world (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#7006790)

YUO FAIL IT!@#

Re:www.fp hello world (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#7006826)

www.fp

WHOO (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#7006781)

FIRST POST OWNS YOU!!!

Torrent (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#7006782)

Just get office 2k3 off torrent, then you can save yourself the $80 with StarCrap

More than a match? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#7006792)

If that is true, Gnome is more than a match for KDE.

star office wants to be free! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#7006797)

save your $80 and use OpenOffice. Or pirate MS Office Xp. Or buy GoBe Productive.

This I like... (1)

TopShelf (92521) | more than 11 years ago | (#7006800)

The next interesting advantage that Calc has is the ability to give a substitute name for columns and rows. In other words, instead of column "G" you can name it "the column formerly known as G" or "sales reports" or whatever is relevant to the data in that column. This makes it a little easier to keep track of what you're doing in your equations.

Re:This I like... (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#7006812)

Jeez, I wish Excel would have that. Oh wait. 1995 called, they want Kurt Cobain back too.

Re:This I like... (0)

TopShelf (92521) | more than 11 years ago | (#7006929)

Gee... pretty glib, but what's your point?

Oops - forgot that AC's don't have points *rimshot*.

Re:This I like... (1)

grub (11606) | more than 11 years ago | (#7006986)

Considering Cobain died in April of 1994 I would think that 1995 wouldn't be too happy with a rotting corpse smelling the place up.

Yeah but (1)

surfinbox (602851) | more than 11 years ago | (#7006803)

Sun's on the ropes as a business and they're switching from hardware to software?? Maybe?? I like the new features, but they've got a hill to climb to convince me to make a commitment to the product while their business is struggling.

Re:Yeah but (1)

Trigun (685027) | more than 11 years ago | (#7006860)

No, Sun is doing what they always have. Selling a complete solution. This is just easing the migration to sun gear, while keeping the x86 boys interoperable.

pdf and swf are nice... (-1)

donald knuth troll (682408) | more than 11 years ago | (#7006805)

.. but can it print to a .dvi file?

Anybody use it yet? (2, Informative)

Cat_Byte (621676) | more than 11 years ago | (#7006818)

I'm use an older version of staroffice (back when it was a free download) and there's lots of things such as newer slide shows or documents with macros it won't view. Does this newer version address any of that?

wow (0, Redundant)

514x0r (691137) | more than 11 years ago | (#7006827)

star office: 79.95
office xp: 448

or, open office......

Flash? (2, Insightful)

Stonent1 (594886) | more than 11 years ago | (#7006829)

Why would I want to export a document to Flash?

Re:Flash? (5, Informative)

cant_get_a_good_nick (172131) | more than 11 years ago | (#7006878)

Probably for presentations; have a read only, run anywhere presentation format. A lot more people have Shockwave than even the viewer for PowerPoint. a lot fewer still have {Star,Open}Office.

Re:wtf? (1)

botzi (673768) | more than 11 years ago | (#7007050)

have a read only, run anywhere presentation format


Am I missing something or Shockwave has been ported to other OS-s(besides Win) since the last time I checked??? I agree that .swf may be *EVENTUALLY* cross-platform with the appropriate plug-ins, but Shockwave, wtF??

Re:Flash? (1)

Micah (278) | more than 11 years ago | (#7006889)

AFAIK it is for Impress presentations. So you can make a fancy presentation with all kinds of effects and then play it in a web browser.

Re:Flash? (1)

Kircle (564389) | more than 11 years ago | (#7006899)

Why would I want to export a document to Flash?

One word. "Presentations." Especially if they get those text animations and transitions working in Flash.

Re:Flash? (1)

Stonent1 (594886) | more than 11 years ago | (#7007028)

Ok, now that makes more sense. But aren't we all supposed to hate flash? I mean that's what the Slashdot Collective keeps telling my coritical implant...

Re:Flash? (2, Interesting)

bryanthompson (627923) | more than 11 years ago | (#7007092)

We exported all of our sales documents (pitch sheets, memos, forms, rate cards, posters, etc.) to flash instead of PDF over the summer. The smallest we could compress a PDF of these documents was around 300kb each (from CoredDraw 9). We can export them to Flash, which gets them at perfect quality for under 80kb. That's a hell of a lot of storage savings when you put all your sales docs on a website.

Re:Flash? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#7007099)

Because you're an idiot?

The Future (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#7006831)

this guy [slashdot.org] seems to be posting most of the stories from the future early...Came in handy yesterday on the Primestar story [slashdot.org] which was /.'ed within seconds of it being posted.

Good for them (5, Interesting)

Doesn't_Comment_Code (692510) | more than 11 years ago | (#7006833)

I wonder if the SWX format will ever really take hold. No doubt it will need something like a very good StarOffice suite to bring it into its own. (And maybe a boost from Microsoft secure documents / forced upgrade)

I have wanted to bring my company onto the free/cheap opensource software bandwagon for some time now. And I have the authority to do it. But I always have to consider the issue - can non-techsmart people handle it? Will they be able to open the documents they receive and use them.

In many ways a really good Office suite will help linux/open source just as much as the benefits of the OS itself.

Re:Good for them (5, Funny)

Smallpond (221300) | more than 11 years ago | (#7006937)


Personals

SWX, clean, non-smoking, looking for long term relationship. Willing to accomodate unusal formats. Cheap, but not easy.

Match for Office? (3, Insightful)

jon323456 (194737) | more than 11 years ago | (#7006844)

Sun's $80 office suite is more than a match for the upcoming ultra-expensive Microsoft Office System 2003.

Okay, let me get this straight -

No PIM (Outlook)

No document review functions

Fonts don't look right

This might rock the casbah for casual home users, but the real money is in the enterprise. Who could reccomend this to their CTO without a PIM? MS might be expensive but the stuff just works.

Re:Match for Office? (3, Interesting)

nojomofo (123944) | more than 11 years ago | (#7006886)

MS might be expensive but the stuff just works.

Give me a break. I've (unfortunately) been programming in VBA for Excel for a couple of months, and it's buggy as hell. One bug that I had to work around has existed since Excel 95, and they clearly have no intention of ever fixing it. It crashes, it behaves badly, etc. Just works, my ass.

Re:Match for Office? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#7006924)

You are an idiot. There are plenty of PIM's out there besides Outlook. You don't need MS Office to get you there.... Try Evolution...

Re:Match for Office? (1)

yoyodyne (469596) | more than 11 years ago | (#7006935)

Plus the fact that you can get Office 2003 for less than $50 on a Select License Agreement.

Re:Match for Office? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#7006939)

The real question is who is even bothering upgrading from Office 2000. All of these alternative Office suites may have finally caught up in most ways but unless you are stupid a new company and don't already have licenses for 2000 I can't see why anybody would bother. And don't tell me about forced upgrade and all that. I am working on a none DRM Windows 2000 thinkpad with Office 2000. I've had it for almost 3 years and have not seen once reason to upgrade and I know my company agrees.

Re:Match for Office? (5, Interesting)

einstein (10761) | more than 11 years ago | (#7006967)

why does the PIM need to be part of the office suite? It doesn't make sense.. everything else is managing documents, PIMs are calendaring and email (why those to are shoehorned together is another post entirely..).

Get your pim elsewhere. There are TONS of options these days.

Re:Match for Office? (1)

mentin (202456) | more than 11 years ago | (#7007046)

Yeah, then why compare price of whole solution (Office System) with price of solution that has only subset of functionality (Star Office), if owner of the second would have to pay for other parts as well?

Re:Match for Office? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#7007071)

On some level, it makes sense to intergrate document storage, project tracking, and "PIM" functionality for larger organizations. However, Microsoft hasn't really done a very good job of doing that.

It doesn't really make sense to throw a database frontend (Access etc) into an Office Suite either, but it gets done primarily for marketing reasons -- buy one package from one vendor and you are all set.

Eventually someone will finish Mozilla's Calendar project and Sun could include the Mozilla suite with StarOffice.

Re:Match for Office? (1)

chobee (555901) | more than 11 years ago | (#7006970)

I would think that Office would do better without Outlook. Think about how much less virus press MS would get without outlook. When you start refering to your outlook address book as your personal virus generator... you might have a problem.

Re:Match for Office? (5, Insightful)

Sylvius (670730) | more than 11 years ago | (#7007047)

I don't understand why people are so hung up on the no PIM issue. Aside from glaring security issues, Outlook is a very usable PIM, but I rarely (if ever) notice/use/desire its integration with the other MS-Office programs (in fact, it's ridiculously annoying that it wastes the memory to load word as its default editor of e-mail messages). I am perfectly happy using my PIM as a standalone piece of software (eg. Evolution) and not having to tolerate an entire (annoying) office suite just to have a PIM. Besides, so much integration and interoperability is being done on the OS level that it should not be necessary to buy all the programs you need as a suite for them to work well together.

On the font topic, this has plagued linux in general for a long time and is not exclusive to StarOffice, though it is (slowly) improving.

Re:Match for Office? (1)

EarthTone (12574) | more than 11 years ago | (#7007056)

{Star|Open}Office(.org) has a full-suite of document revision functions, as well as versioning. It's been there since OpenOffice.org 1.0. Now granted, there is no SharePoint server, but it's easy as hell to integrate that into an existing Intranet/Web application.

Re:Match for Office? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#7007080)

No PIM? UH, you could take the $320+ saved and buy a copy of Evolution. That way you'd still come out way ahead fiscally with the same functionality.

Re:Match for Office? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#7007083)

While I agree with the basic point you're making, I don't think the "just works" line applies here. MSOffice has features the others don't.

BTW, I spent an hour yesterday fixing someone's computer because they installed Outlook to replace Outlook Express. It didn't "just work".

Re:Match for Office? (4, Insightful)

Le Marteau (206396) | more than 11 years ago | (#7007089)

Who could reccomend this to their CTO without a PIM? MS might be expensive but the stuff just works.

Yeah, it works alright. Because management's hard for Outlook, our IT department makes us keep our machines running 24/7 with mandated re-boots every night so the continual stream of patches and security fixes.

It's the height of irresponsibility to include Microsoft's Outlook on any desktop... that thing is the source of most of the headaches in corporate computing than all others put together (a major vector for viruses, trojans, etc.) The only reason it's got such devotion is because the PHB's love the calendar and the scheduling integration. But it's just not worth it, considering the grief.

Re:Match for Office? (1)

Captain Rotundo (165816) | more than 11 years ago | (#7007105)

How about telling IT that it doesn't include that virus trap Outlook ?

Looks like a good review... (5, Insightful)

watzinaneihm (627119) | more than 11 years ago | (#7006853)

The reviewer accepts when he cant do things (like test how fast it actually starts up compared to earlier verions), looks at the important stuff etc
My favorite is this one though, the author shows that he looks in places which only the /. crowd would find interesting
The license agreement is rather odd. A part of Sun's legalese (which also appears in the Solaris license) stipulates that StarOffice 7 is not intended for use in (or by those contracted by) a nuclear facility.

Re:Looks like a good review... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#7006962)

The license agreement is rather odd. A part of Sun's legalese (which also appears in the Solaris license) stipulates that StarOffice 7 is not intended for use in (or by those contracted by) a nuclear facility.

Ever read the M$ EULA for Orrice? It's just standard CYA practice...

Re:Looks like a good review... (1)

TopShelf (92521) | more than 11 years ago | (#7006982)

I guess they don't want Homer calling for support...

call me a moron... (4, Interesting)

selderrr (523988) | more than 11 years ago | (#7006854)

When our kids went to school september 1st, I volounteered as computer fixer. First thing I did was throw off ALL (I'll repeat : ALL) office suites of all computers. That included MS Office, Open Office and Appleworks. I replaced them with Wordpad and similar "silly" editors.

We're september 19, and NOBODY noticed. I got 1 remark from a teacher telling me that this year, the kids seemed to get along better with the computers compared to last year.

All this just to prove that 90% of current software can be reduced to the max in 90% of all machine instances.

Re:call me a moron... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#7006883)

You are a moron.

Re:call me a moron... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#7006912)

Avast matey's! I CONCUR! Arrrr!

Re:call me a moron... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#7006933)

Boy, that will be great when the kids or teachers have to make a powerpoint (because it WILL require PowerPoint) presentation or do a spreadsheet.

Re:call me a moron... (1)

puck71 (223721) | more than 11 years ago | (#7006955)

Just curious...is this elementary school or something? Because once you get into high school and college, people will start knowing the difference between Word and Wordpad. Word is a very powerful word processor that can do virtually anything you need it to do, whereas Wordpad is basically Notepad with buttons. Wordpad works fine if you're just typing a plain ole paper, double-spaced and indented...and can even do some more advanced stuff too...but if you try to do anything really advanced then you're pretty limited.

Bottom line, that approach is fine for elem. school and (arguably) middle school, but once you get into high school and college I think you'd be doing them a dis-service...if only because most places they want to get a job at will use Word, and thus they will need to be familiar with it or risk losing the job to someone who is.

Re:call me a moron... (4, Interesting)

cant_get_a_good_nick (172131) | more than 11 years ago | (#7006958)

I had a HCI (human computer interaction, GUI guru) professor that set up his dad's computer once. He set up Word (to date this, it was Word 6) to have a minimal set of menus. File: open, new, save, print. Fonts, font list, Bold, italic. That's it, his dad never had to ask for more.

Re:call me a moron... (5, Funny)

+trewq000-()-0- (675257) | more than 11 years ago | (#7007029)

Oy, you're the bastard that I had to follow around on September 2, just to re-install all the Office Suites on the school computers.

I'll get you for that!

</joke>

Re:call me a moron... (4, Funny)

hcuar (706760) | more than 11 years ago | (#7007057)

Then next year you could try removing Wordpad and just using notepad. Wouldn't want all the extra features of Wordpad to get in the way. Maybe you could go back to MS-DOS editor. Oh wait... Even better... How about vi?

But isn't Sun dying? (0, Redundant)

the_haxorest (708583) | more than 11 years ago | (#7006858)

I'm sure all of you have read the article about how Sun "lost the Linux Wars" in Wired Magazine [wired.com] , and for me it just seems like another desperate attempt by them to not go under. Now, don't get me wrong, If I had a company I thought was going under, I'd be desperate, as well. But why pick this when there are better OS's, and better (open source, even) Office Suites?

Real world features (5, Interesting)

+trewq000-()-0- (675257) | more than 11 years ago | (#7006876)

I have just convinced my boss to switch over StarOffice 7, and the features and support were a major factor in putting it into his comfort zone. He was quite reticent before then. I don't think Microsoft will really be hurt by it's release immeadiately, but it will help a lot of companies start to slowly adopt more alternative options.

C'mon, money where the mouth is people! (4, Insightful)

Gothmolly (148874) | more than 11 years ago | (#7006880)

It's time for us geeks to belly up to the bar and pay for something that we want. Everyone claims to hate MS, and to use OpenSource whenever possible (except for games, and well, MS Word, and Flash, and aww heck, just reinstall Win2K). $80 is peanuts, compared to the price of MS Office, and 50% more than the price of a good video game. Nobody will think twice about paying $50 for Half Life 2 (which runs on Windows), but everyone will flame Sun for the gall of charging for StarOffice. OOo is free, yes, but StarOffice or other commercial Office alternatives (Applix on Linux anyone? Yes, I bought it.)

People can't write good, free-as-in-beer software forever. People need to eat, breed and pay their taxes. As romantic as it sounds, you can't have coders working for free for the common good w/o ultimate payment. MS can give away IE because they've already been paid for it due to their enslavement of the desktop.

Support Sun, fight MS, and buy the damn product.

Re:C'mon, money where the mouth is people! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#7007013)

I agree 100%. I don't hesitate to buy my distros or other software from the Manufacturer (SuSE, Sun, etc...) because they need to pay for the lights, heat, and food!

People, software from the *nix community might be free, but at what cost? These people are going to run out of patience writting software for you to use if you don't pay for it! If it truly is better, then PAY FOR IT!!!! It reminds me of the Shareware concept. Download the game, play it, and if you like it, then go buy it! Same thing applies here. Nuff said.

pffttt.... (1)

deuist (228133) | more than 11 years ago | (#7006891)

>> the ability to export to PDF and SWF and greatly improved conversion filters

Yes, but is it still slow, unstable, and ugly? If so, I'll keep using MS Office and K Word.

Re:pffttt.... (1)

repetty (260322) | more than 11 years ago | (#7007048)

Well, since it's a rip-off of MS Office, I don't know how you can say it was ugly.

Re:pffttt.... (1)

watzinaneihm (627119) | more than 11 years ago | (#7007084)

Nope . The review clearly says that the export is near perfect. Apparently he had problems exporting a 120 page novel in the earlier version to PDF and now it works perfectly.

Re:pffttt.... (1)

myz24 (256948) | more than 11 years ago | (#7007093)

Don't worry, we'll all read the article for you and answer the question

"Although I don't have an accurate method of reliably measuring the time it takes to start the program, I'd say its about twice as fast as StarOffice 6."

Macros (3, Insightful)

stoolpigeon (454276) | more than 11 years ago | (#7006892)

For those OO/SO users out there. What do these products offer that will do what Visual Basic does in MS Office?

Can you access Star Office documents from applications in any RAD languages like you can in with MS Office/VB?

Thought this might be a good place to get some input on that. At my work there are a lot of apps written in VB that generate Excel spreadsheets. I'd love to know that I can replace that functionality with something else.

This is a serious question and there'll be those who want to flame me for just mentioning VB but the truth of the matter is - there is tons of small office stuff written in VB and VBA, which is where I make my living. I can't move people from office unless I can replace that too

.

Re:Macros (1)

Doesn't_Comment_Code (692510) | more than 11 years ago | (#7007072)

Thought this might be a good place to get some input on that. At my work there are a lot of apps written in VB that generate Excel spreadsheets. I'd love to know that I can replace that functionality with something else.

There are Perl modules that read and write Excel spreadsheets. It would take work, but that combination should be able to replace whatever you have in place now. At most, you should only have to write or find an import/export library once, and use it in every program you write from that point on.

Java, Python, C++ and others (5, Informative)

doublem (118724) | more than 11 years ago | (#7007087)

From the API FAQ [openoffice.org] for OpenOffice.

"OpenOffice implements the API with UNO (Universal Network Objects). Currently there are language bindings for Java and C++. You can implement your own language binding, and in fact we are actively looking for a volunteer to create a C language binding.

Additionally UNO allows control from scripting languages and scripting environments (for example debuggers). Currently StarBASIC (VBA syntax compatible) can call on the API and there is a prototype written for Python integration. "


If OpenOffice can di it, I'd wager StarOffice can too. The StarOffice SDK should have all the details.

Re:Macros (1)

Lecutis (709067) | more than 11 years ago | (#7007094)

I would much rather recieve output in a comma delimited file. It's smaller, opens in virtually every document viewer, and it's easy to edit with even the simplist of editors.

Putting things into perspective... (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#7006938)

ValourX, the author of the review, also has a comprehensive comparison of word processors [thejemreport.com] , and here OpenOffice doesn't fare so well. The author seems much more impressed with TextMaker for Linux [thejemreport.com] .

Re:Putting things into perspective... (1)

ValourX (677178) | more than 11 years ago | (#7006996)

That was a beta edition (RC3) of OpenOffice and a beta edition of StarOffice (6.1). It was also written from the perspective of a writer and it was looking only at word processors. It's important to make these distinctions, because I am not at all against OO.org and I'd like to see it improve. But quite honestly, StarOffice is worth the $80 at this point because of the better fonts and writing tools. TextMaker is indeed an awesome word processor, and for the price you just can't beat it. In the context of the review it does win because of its value. It's no replacement for a whole office suite though. It all depends on what you really need. -Jem

stupid question - need an answer (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#7006947)

What's that cable that looks like an IDE cable but the inputs are reversed? I have a hard drive in a server and the cable seems to be shot but I can't find that type anywhere... Thanks!

Further Reading (-1, Troll)

Pablo_Rulz (690306) | more than 11 years ago | (#7006959)

2 Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3 because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. 4 Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. 5 If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him. 6 But when he asks, he must believe and not doubt, because he who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. 7 That man should not think he will receive anything from the Lord; 8 he is a double-minded man, unstable in all he does.

James 1:2-8

Price Performance Ratio (2, Insightful)

Black Mage Balthazar (708812) | more than 11 years ago | (#7006961)

An excellent product at a low price. Cross platform. Compatible with the leading competitor. Wonderful.

No advertising so the general public can learn about this great product, regardless of their OS "choice." Not so hot.

could be... (4, Insightful)

Roadkills-R-Us (122219) | more than 11 years ago | (#7006984)

We were already considering evaluating this as our cross-platform solution, or at least as our Linux/Solaris solution to handle these chores well while playing with the folks who use MS tools.

OpenOffice has been waaaay too slow. I've been using gnumeric and abiword, with the odd foray into Impress, since there doesn't seem to be an alternatove. My biggest complaint with abiword (besides needing its own fonts, fixed in 2.0) is that it doesn't import HTML - it treats them as plain text. Brain dead! I looked at TexMaker, which has most of what AbiWord is missing, but it's just ugly as can be, and has some braindead GUI issues, like folders on the right, files on the left. Did I get a broken i18nized version?

Now if only StarOffice included an Outlook-compliant calendar, email and PIM. (We'll still try it, despite not having these.)

So where is the MS Project clone? As of not long ago, Mr. Project still couldn't read or write Ms. Project files...

Been using 6.1beta2 for a while now (5, Interesting)

panurge (573432) | more than 11 years ago | (#7006989)

I've been telling clients to delay buying Office upgrades till this came out, and I think they'll thank me for it. There are things SO won't do that Office will, but I would stick my neck out and say that in many cases those are things that shouldn't be done with an office package. In particular I have been testing the SO database connectivity heavily. It's solid and I think this is going to form part of my future solutions. Being able to drive SO in Java could lead to some really neat presentation layer work.

I'm not knocking any of the completely OSS suites, far from it. But I think Sun is doing everybody a service by demonstrating to the PHBs that a major software player can produce credible competition for Office and sell it for peanuts. I want to see people making money out of FOSS - because that will keep it developing - and if Sun's work leads others to produce customised and extended office suites based on other OSS suites, that should get back the pace of development that has been so held back by the MS monopoly.

Also, although I'm too old to use the terminology without looking sad, the XML output format rocks. People will be able to do some really creative things with this.

Remember: once upon a time almost all tires were crossply. Then along came radial. No technology has a right to a monopoly for longer than it takes for something better to come along.

Gee, thanks (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#7006997)

Thanks for the bloated PDF's there.... How about working on something more important?

document support is only half the problem (5, Insightful)

NumLk (709027) | more than 11 years ago | (#7007032)

As much as I'd love to use SO (or, insert other non-MS product here), the unfortunate reality is most business applications my company uses (and our clients as well) that sit on the desktop require Office. It simply isn't enough to say "This can open & save Word / Excel / etc. documents." A true replacement needs to support MS plugins, VBA (ugh, but sorry, its needed), and so on before we can even consider it. Unfortunately, as absurd as MS pricing is, its an all-or-nothing battle too, the cost to support each additional Office Suite is just too high for a midsized (500-1000 user) shop. We've tried talking to dozens of vendors just to get a timeline on this sort of thing, and with the occasional exception of a few that are porting apps to Java, most aren't even considering it, simply because of the costs they would incur for what appears to be a small market. Unfortunately, I know its a chicken & egg situation: My company can't switch until a good number of our business apps support non-MS software, but... well, this is slashdot, you know the rest.

Umm... (1)

LearnToSpell (694184) | more than 11 years ago | (#7007061)

Although I don't have an accurate method of reliably measuring the time it takes to start the program, I'd say its about twice as fast as StarOffice 6.

Maybe one of these [navy.mil] would help. Difficult to operate, I know.

An upgrade for StarOffice 6.0 users? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#7007106)

I actually bought StarOffice 6.0 about a year ago, will there be an upgrade, either free or a nominal cost? If not, that would be bad form by Sun Microsystems for those who did support their product early on.
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