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Author Topic: iWorks 08 vs Microsoft Office 08  (Read 13356 times)
dmd25
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« Reply #15 on: February 25, 2008, 08:49:57 AM »

We don't use excel much, so that isn't a big concern.  (Actually, I would love to use it for some things, but haven't had a great deal of success in trying to teach myself!!) 

My biggest question, I guess is this: is Pages as good as Word?  Will our high school student and our daughter in college find it adequate?  (She actually has Word on her laptop.) 
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Dut
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« Reply #16 on: February 25, 2008, 01:15:44 PM »

WOW  Shocked You've asked a hell of a question, now wait and see all the "it's better" posts come flooding in  Cheesy

I have Pages and it's a dream to work with. You will have a bit of difference the first time you use it from word. It's great and fun! Things just work the way you want them too and Pages will conform to Word documents should you need them to.

The really great thing is if you want to create, say a letter with a business or funky logo. If you already have that logo designed all you have to do is click drag ad drop it on the template. You can then move it, resize etc until your heart is content.

Hope this helps?  Smiley
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StanTheMan
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« Reply #17 on: February 25, 2008, 01:29:14 PM »

Thank you Mordak5 Smiley I have been awaiting an opportunity to ask the question you have just answered.
My understanding was that Numbers was on the light side with regard to abilities and you have confirmed it for me.

Not really surprising that Microsoft 'hammed' it up a little they do not want to make Apple look too good Grin.

Do you 'manage' with Mac Office Excel or revert to the PC version for serious work?
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        Iyadwyhadywagwyhag   From the Celtic                  S2M with a Mac Pro 12 Feb 2008
JamesJM
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« Reply #18 on: February 25, 2008, 05:53:21 PM »

Take this for what it's worth -

I do some small spreadsheet and word jobs for some local businesses, all of them using MS Office. 

Sometimes I create the documents from scratch and other times I will edit something they have created using MS Office.  I have MS Office on my Mac... BUT...

For both the originals AND the documents I have edited for them I have always used either iWorks, (Numbers & Pages), or NeoOffice....

The businesses have never noticed any differences, as yet.  They have no idea I'm not using MS Office.

That said... the spreadsheets I have created and edited have NOT been very intensive.  IOW, no macro's, VB Script, or fancy-schmancy formatting.  If that were the case the chances would become greater that I would have to use MS Office, NOT because I cannot accomplish nearly the same with iWorks or NeoOffice, I could... and in some ways do an even better job, but rather because some of the Formatting and perhaps macro's would not work as well when I saved the documents back into MS Office files.     - JamesJM
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Mordak5
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« Reply #19 on: February 25, 2008, 07:22:34 PM »

I usually revert to the PC version of Excel, mainly because I can use it faster. I suppose if I practiced with the Mac version I would get the hang of it.

typical page for my sheets has 400+ line and 35 columns with formula like this
=+IF(AND(F134="V",G134>0),1,0)
or
 =IF(AND(E68=2,F68="D"),+H68,IF(AND(E68=2,F68=""),+I68+K68+J68,0))

in Word a typical word document has the following for mail merging
{if "{REF howpay}" = "n""{if{=(b2\#"£#.##0.00;(£#.##)"}<100" "" Followed by 9 of {if{=((((b1+15)-b5)*10.65%)\#"£#.##0.00;(£#.##)"}<20"{=((((b1+15)-b5)+20)/9\#"£#.##0.00;(£#.##)"}""{=((((b1+15)-b5)*1.1065)/9\#"£#.##0.00;(£#.##)"}"} by DDM"}""  "}

so you can see learning how to do this in pages / numbers not so easy.

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dmd25
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« Reply #20 on: February 25, 2008, 08:11:43 PM »

Thank you for your replies!  I have found them quite interesting.  I think for my purposes iWorks would be fine--especially since we have Office on 2 computers.

This is a bit related, I guess...but a question for you spreadsheet people....is there any way I can teach myself to make simple spreadsheets?  I have tried with Excel, but not had great success.  I'd love any suggestions for online tutorials or anything else. 
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apricot_queen
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« Reply #21 on: February 26, 2008, 01:56:27 AM »

Hi dmd25

I know you said that you will be using iworks, but you asked for online tutorials in spreadsheets.  There are fairly good basic lessons within excel (via microsoft, online) these start with the very basics of how to use and create formula, providing you with, in some instances, the data on a spreedsheet to download. Most everything that you learn will be transferrable to pages as none of it is to complicated. 
I am self taught, mainly from this source.  The only gripe I have is that you have to know what to ask in order to get the answer you are looking for, how you achieve this when you don't know the answer is tricky  Smiley  ,but I have 'bumped' into to some very interesting lessons in this way. lol
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StanTheMan
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« Reply #22 on: February 26, 2008, 03:07:03 AM »

a_q is absolutely right dmd25 Wink. I did the same and my first real project was for a relative to use in presentation to financiers. It covered everything about setting up costs to marketing assessment and amortisation of the capital investment. For convenience it was split into three linked spreadsheets. Reports from my relative indicated that it had created the desired impression.
It does not sound as if you will have a need to understand all the formulae available in either of the systems under discussion but it is worth remembering the basic method constructing a spreadsheet is very similar regardless of vendor.
The Microsoft Tutorials are excellent for the purpose and you can progress at your pace.

Good luck Smiley

[edit]  typo
« Last Edit: February 26, 2008, 09:35:04 AM by StanTheMan » Logged

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        Iyadwyhadywagwyhag   From the Celtic                  S2M with a Mac Pro 12 Feb 2008
dmd25
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« Reply #23 on: February 26, 2008, 08:26:46 AM »

Thank you, a_q and Stan.  I should have been more clear, I guess--I had pretty much assumed that any online tutorials would be for excel, not pages--so your info is very helpful!  I will go look at microsoft and see what I can find.  I would love to be able to get excel figured out at least a little!

Thanks again.
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« Reply #24 on: February 27, 2008, 11:15:08 AM »

I don't use Numbers, but I do use Pages and Keynote, and let me tell you.  I am never going back.  So much so that I now have only one piece of Microsoft software on my main/big Mac and that is Excel, that I keep around "just in case" but it is never used.

Now that I think about it, Word is probably still in there, but having not used it for many months now I forget it's there.  I find it so much easier to work a document in Pages, and even more so now that I have a lot of shortcuts attached to my brain for when I'm powering through and don't want to be interrupted by the mouse.
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dmd25
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« Reply #25 on: February 27, 2008, 01:29:57 PM »

Sam,

Thank you so much for taking the time to respond.  I would love to not be interrupted by the mouse! Smiley

Last night I downloaded a free 30 day trial of iwork and look forward to playing with it.  I am sure that will help me make a decision.  I would love to love the program!

Thanks again for your comments.
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JamesJM
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« Reply #26 on: February 27, 2008, 02:37:44 PM »

Just a thought about Numbers... and I'm sure this is probably only ME... but still...

Of ALL the Apple programs this one is the toughest for me to get a handle on.

Yes, I use it... but I have created very little with it.

Recently I tried to print a simple spreadsheet with Numbers and it took me a half and hour to figure it out.  It was NOT intuitive... and perhaps that stems from my Excel days with which I have far more experience. 

Now as I said, this could simply be ME... BUT... I don't think so.  Try putting a border around cells in Numbers AND, (the AND is important) have it show up on the printed sheet - - -  a more simple task shouldn't exist... but go ahead, try it.  It CAN be done, and if you can figure out how in under an hour... EVEN READING HELP PAGES ON THE WEB... then I'll buy you a six pack of Guiness.  I had to create a "help" text file to do this quickly because I can't remember from one Numbers session to the next how to get this done.

Easier... but convoluted to the extreme - is simply printing in LANDSCAPE from Numbers.  It's probably a big "DUH" for long time Apple users BUT for us Switchers it's complexity where none should exist... AND... it's absolutely NOT more intuitive.  There is no simple 'click'.  HINT... you won't, or some of us do not, get a simple "LANDSCAPE" option when choosing PRINT.  It must be set up in the document BEFORE printing.

I could go on... but no need.  My point is... for long time Excel Users NO APPLE program is more different and LESS, IMHO, easy to use than Numbers.  And it's not the worksheet and formulas themselves. 

Pages, some have mentioned, IS better than Word... with one exception.  Mail Merge.  BUT... I have found that the mail merge Pages DOES offer, though very different, works much better and simply for my needs.  Still... mail merge in WORD is infinitely more powerful than mail merge in Pages.

Six of one and half dozen of another.  That's basically the story in a nutshell.  One offers THIS, the other THAT.  NEITHER offers both. - JamesJM






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dmd25
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« Reply #27 on: February 27, 2008, 03:30:13 PM »

James,

I found your post quite interesting.  I am glad you took the time to write.  We have Excel on two computers--and if I ever locate the disk, can put it on another, so the fact that Numbers seems to be less than the best isn't a problem. And--since I am not at all proficient in Excel I rarely use it anyway!

I always am interested in reading your posts!
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« Reply #28 on: February 27, 2008, 05:28:49 PM »

Make sure you use it more than once.  I activated the iWork 06 that came with Tiger using a "free" code and I wasn't impressed with it (I just needed Keynote so I could show off in a presentation later that week).

Then I downloaded the trial (of '08 after deleting my less-than-reputable version of 06) after there was some talk about it here some time before Christmas and I loved it after a few plays with it.

And for £35 (student discount) I can't complain at all.
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« Reply #29 on: February 27, 2008, 07:00:07 PM »

I've actually used Numbers is an Excel college class.

I ended up doing most of my work on PC, I think, because it was so Excel specific (duh). But I wanted to try Numbers (in comparison) to see how close it was to Excel.

The impression I came away with is that Numbers isn't in Excel's class, but it is close. That's my opinion. And, as documented before, the exporting to .xls from Numbers is not seamless. Chances are, you will have to reformat most things that were done in Numbers, in Excel on that same file.

I do think, however, the appearance of Numbers is nicer than Excel. Whatever that is worth.
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