Archive for the 'Microsoft' Category

Word 2011: Keeps switching windows back to main screen

Monday, August 8th, 2011 • 3:15 pm

In the past couple of weeks, I have, once again, been forced by my work to use Microsoft Word 2011 instead of Pages ’09 as my word processor, and I just cannot believe how painful it has been… Microsoft’s developers obviously do not care about quality control or otherwise they would not let so many bugs slip through […]

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Getting ready for Lion: Converting old files

Thursday, July 14th, 2011 • 6:17 pm

One of the most shameful aspects of Microsoft’s quasi-monopoly on office automation is that, even though their office software is the de facto standard and their file formats are used pervasively by hundreds of millions of people, they are unable or unwilling to provide reliable backward file format compatibility in their own office applications. For […]

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Word 5.1 Nostalgia: I don’t get it

Tuesday, May 24th, 2011 • 10:05 am

There are multiple examples of Microsoft Word 5.1 nostalgia on the web. For various reasons, many Mac users have come to believe that Microsoft Word 5.1 was the last great word processor for the Mac, that it was a near-perfect product and that it’s been all downhill from there. The latest example comes from Forkbombr […]

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Word 2011: Video evidence of poor performance

Wednesday, May 11th, 2011 • 3:15 pm

It’s not always easy to describe what makes Microsoft Word for Mac OS X such a slow application with a poor level of performance, even on a fairly fast machine. Today, I offer two short video clips shot on my own machine, a 2009 Mac Pro with 16 (!) virtual cores and 12 GB of RAM, […]

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Word 2011: Finally supports background window scrolling

Friday, April 29th, 2011 • 2:43 pm

I have lost count of the number of years that we have had to endure Microsoft Word’s lack of support for background window scrolling — i.e. the ability to scroll through a background document window by simply hovering over it with the mouse pointer and using the mouse’s scrolling control, whether it’s a wheel, a ball, […]

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Office 2011 14.1 Update: Still does not support file names with slashes

Wednesday, April 13th, 2011 • 2:24 pm

When Word 2011 came out, I wrote about this new bug that caused the application to fail to open any file whose path contained certain “non-standard” characters, including accented letters, forward and backward slashes (/\), more-than and less-than symbols (<>), and so on. Today, I installed the latest Office 2011 update, whose description fails to […]

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Word and InDesign: Fixing import crashes

Monday, April 11th, 2011 • 9:34 am

It’s that time of the year again. I am putting together a publication for our local university in InDesign CS5, and I have to work with existing Word files that were submitted by the various contributors and then edited by the publication’s editor-in-chief. And when you combine two lousy pieces of software such as Office 2011 […]

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Word 2011: Can’t beat that polish

Tuesday, March 8th, 2011 • 9:44 am

With all the bugs and glitches that I am highlighting in Word 2011, I should probably strive to be a bit more fair and balanced and give Microsoft props when props are due. And I must say that, in Word 2011, they have outdone themselves in the aesthetic department, especially with controls that really look like they […]

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Word 2011: Blank menus

Tuesday, March 8th, 2011 • 9:27 am

Here’s another new fun thing that Word 2011 throws at you from time to time just to spice up your attempts to use it for what it is intended for, i.e., you know, word processing: Gives new meaning to the phrase “drawing a blank,” does it not? Right here, it’s happening to me with the Ribbon […]

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Word 2011: Disappearing cursor

Monday, March 7th, 2011 • 10:07 am

When you are forced to use Microsoft Word 2011’s in your line of work, as I am, here’s the type of crap that you have to contend with on a daily basis: What is this, you say? It’s simple. It’s a Word document open in Word 2011 with the blinking cursor (insertion point) located before the word […]

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Word 2011: Word selection with mouse vs. keyboard shortcuts

Friday, March 4th, 2011 • 5:33 pm

For a word processor that is supposed to be keyboard-friendly, i.e. eminently usable by power users who like keyboard shortcuts and other keyboard-based features, Microsoft Word sure is eminently stupid. I am a big fan of word-by-word selection. I know that many Mac users are not even aware of its existence, but when you want to […]

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Pages ’09: Export as Word and automatic table of contents

Monday, February 28th, 2011 • 2:51 pm

If, like me, you regularly use Pages ’09 to edit Word documents and then export your work back in Word format before sharing it with other people, you need to aware of a number of issues, including what happens to automatic tables of contents. Both Word 2011 and Pages ’09 have a feature that inserts an automatic […]

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Pages ’09: Export as Word and space between table and text

Saturday, February 19th, 2011 • 4:49 pm

By default, if you use the blank template in Pages ’09 to create a new document, you get a document in which the default paragraph style has zero space after and zero space before. (That was not the case with the first version of Pages back in 2005. Back then, the default body style has a […]

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Pages ’09: Export as Word fails to preserve footnote numbering option

Friday, February 18th, 2011 • 10:44 am

If, like me, you quite often use Pages ’09 instead of the Holy Crappiness known as Microsoft Word, and just export your Pages documents as Word documents before sharing them with other people, there are a number of problems that you need to be aware of and that require that you edit your exported Word documents […]

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PowerPoint 2011: Paragraph selection bug

Sunday, February 13th, 2011 • 11:10 am

Here’s yet another example of the pathetic level of attention to detail in Microsoft products for Mac OS X. (This level is close to zero.) Say you have a list of items formatted as bullets: I don’t need to tell you how common this type of thing is in PowerPoint presentations. As expected, a single click on […]

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