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Microsoft reveals Office for Mac 2011 will be 32-bit only

post #1 of 115
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Set for release this fall, Microsoft's forthcoming Office for Mac 2011 will only be available as a 32-bit product because it hasn't completely transitioned to Cocoa for Mac OS X.

Microsoft's Mac OS X development team, MacBU, updated its official website this week to note that its members are at WWDC 2010 this week, taking part in Apple's developer sessions. The team revealed that their focus has been to increase compatibility between the Windows and Mac versions of Office, which means a 64-bit option on the Mac won't happen this year.

"Our work to increase compatibility means we havent completed the transition of moving the entire user interface over to Cocoa yet," Jake Hoelter, product unit manager with MacBU wrote. "And because Apple's frameworks require us to complete the move to Cocoa before we can build a 64-bit version, Office 2011 will be 32-bit only."

Elements of the newest Office for Mac, including the ribbon user interface, are built on Cocoa, the development layer of Mac OS X. And the all-new version of Outlook has been built from the ground up with Cocoa for the Mac.

Hoelter said that Office for Mac 2011 will still look and feel "great," Cocoa or not. He said the biggest advantage in having a 64-bit application is the larger memory capacity.

"Most users with typical or even larger-than-average document content will not notice a difference in performance," he said. "Where 64-bit can make a difference for people working with huge amounts of data, such as those creating very large Excel files with data in millions of cells, or PowerPoint presentations with thousands of high resolution images."



He also noted that the Windows Office Engineering team has recommended that most people buying Office for Windows stick with the 32-bit version, even though it will also be available in 64-bit. The team said the 32-bit version in Windows offers the best compatibility.

Hoelter said the MacBU team supports Cocoa because it makes it easier for them to give applications the look and feel that Mac users want. In the future, he said, the team plans to go further with Cocoa.

"Meanwhile," he said, "I think customers are going to be really happy with the improvements in compatibility, collaboration, and user experience we're bringing in Office 2011."

The new version of Office for Mac promises greater feature parity with its Windows version, including improved support for Exchange and reincorporated support for Visual Basic for Applications. It also has a similar look to Office 2010 for Windows, adding the ribbon interface found in previous Windows versions.

Office for Mac 2011 will also add co-authoring tools to allow multiple users the ability to work on files from Word, PowerPoint or Excel from different locations. Microsoft Web Apps can also be accessed, allowing users to share Office documents from any machine with an Internet connection. And Microsoft has said the new ribbon interface gives "the best of both worlds" by using the classic Mac menu and Standard Toolbar.
post #2 of 115
Fail.

Give me a yell in a couple years when you finally get your act together, maybe I'll consider it then.
post #3 of 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

... it hasn't completely transitioned to Cocoa for Mac OS X.

Take your time, Microsoft. I mean it's only been about eight years since Apple started strongly suggesting all developers move their apps to Cocoa and xCode.

Office is the most bloated, resource-eating, slow-as-hell collection of programs on the platform. Seriously, HD After Effects renders are less taxing on my Mac Pro than launching Microsoft Entourage.
post #4 of 115
Do most users need 64 bit office? No.
Does it run in 64-bit snow leopard? Yes.
Will this stop most users from updating? Not likely.

Is this good for iWork? Yes.

Is it a fail? Not really.
post #5 of 115
Why is MS's MacBU at WWDC? There are no Mac tracks at WWDC. It's all iOS.
post #6 of 115
Why do the Windows and Mac versions look so different? It seems completely pointless to have one application that runs of two different platforms and not have identical visual functionality layout. They may have different colors and such but it seems ridiculous to have different layouts and different naming conventions.
post #7 of 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cory Bauer View Post

Take your time, Microsoft. I mean it's only been about eight years since Apple started strongly suggesting all developers move their apps to Cocoa and xCode.

Office is the most bloated, resource-eating, slow-as-hell collection of programs on the platform. Seriously, HD After Effects renders are less taxing on my Mac Pro than launching Microsoft Entourage.

Then don't use it. It's that simple lol
Quote:
Originally Posted by Eriamjh View Post

Do most users need 64 bit office? No.
Does it run in 64-bit snow leopard? Yes.
Will this stop most users from updating? Not likely.

Is this good for iWork? Yes.

Is it a fail? Not really.

Thanks for posting the common sense early on this one. The thread will still be filled with funny comments though
post #8 of 115
Good lord - does someone at MS beat their interfaces with an ugly stick?

"Microsoft reveals Office for Mac 2011 will be 32-bit only"

In a related story, Ford Festivas will have cast, not forged cranks.
post #9 of 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by paxman View Post

Why do the Windows and Mac versions look so different? It seems completely pointless to have one application that runs of two different platforms and not have identical visual functionality layout. They may have different colors and such but it seems ridiculous to have different layouts and different naming conventions.

Because if they were identical, the Mac Office menu bar would just contain a single menu. for example, "Word", which would make for a pretty confusing user experience on Mac OS. The ribbon is confusing enough as it is for Windows users.
post #10 of 115
Please MS enhance the Cyrillic support in Office 2011. It is impossible to create cyrillic custom dictionary in language different from Russian.

In Office 2008 there is not Cyrillic support at all!
post #11 of 115
that means the Law of the Donkey is invoked here.....

One thought he was invincible... the other thought he could fly.

They were both wrong.

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One thought he was invincible... the other thought he could fly.

They were both wrong.

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post #12 of 115
I mean, seriously, who needs a 64-bit version of Office now?

This is the computer world's equivalent of Keeping Up with the Joneses. We don't need something, but gosh darn do we want it!

For example, can you provide a plug-in that provides access to Twitter and Facebook that allows us to embed a live News Feed in an Excel worksheet's cell?

What? Can't do it? What a crappy application.
post #13 of 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by minderbinder View Post

Fail. Give me a yell in a couple years when you finally get your act together, maybe I'll consider it then.

Yea... Well we should give em some credit that they made the COCOA transition while COCOA was still an active Apple technology.... Ummm it IS isn't it? I mean it's WWDC day 3 I'm sure SOMEONE from Apple MUST have mentioned it by now right? Right??
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post #14 of 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by ktappe View Post

Why is MS's MacBU at WWDC? There are no Mac tracks at WWDC. It's all iOS.


If I'm not mistaken, Steve Jobs stated at the beginning of his keynote video that there was, indeed, discussion and info available about the entire Mac environment ... all week long.
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post #15 of 115
Nobody is even going to know the difference, or care. There is nothing in Office that can really benefit from 64bit anyway.
post #16 of 115
I am ready for this release. We are moving to Exchange 2010 and will benefit greatly from the new version of Office:Mac. I don't like iWork, there is no WordPerfect for Mac and OpenOffice doesn't work for my needs.
post #17 of 115
Apple is doomed!

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post #18 of 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by minderbinder View Post

Fail.

Give me a yell in a couple years when you finally get your act together, maybe I'll consider it then.

I suppose iTunes is also a "fail" because it it still 32 bit and uses Carbon, and you won't consider using it until Apple finally gets its act together.
post #19 of 115
Why is iTunes still 32 bit, 8 years after Carbon has been pronounced dead? For the same reason.
post #20 of 115
Yeah, the whole 320bit thing doesnt bother me as much as the UI. Regardless of aesthetics... or that "Mac feel" apps tend to have over a typical Windows OS Experience... from my personal experience, i make the assumption that more and more people are bouncing back and forth between OS's now aday... and the UI needs to be identical. This has been a problem with MS Office for mac for the last years. I feel as though I have to learn two completely different sets of apps depending if I want to work on Office for mac or Office for PC.

Do you think they are just trying to differentiate it for branding purposes? I'm really perplexed.
post #21 of 115
The only thing that most people who still use Office will really care about in the 2011 Office for Mac will be how well the Mac Business Unit reimplements Visual Basic and whether the new Outlook will be functional. Everything else is window(s)-dressing.
post #22 of 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cory Bauer View Post

Take your time, Microsoft. I mean it's only been about eight years since Apple started strongly suggesting all developers move their apps to Cocoa and xCode.

Office is the most bloated, resource-eating, slow-as-hell collection of programs on the platform. Seriously, HD After Effects renders are less taxing on my Mac Pro than launching Microsoft Entourage.

Microsoft Office 2008 woes

Actually, I use Office 2008 for work every single day. Sadly, it is only because iWork doesn't do Office templates that well - at least well enough that I can pass them to the editor. What I put up with everyday is worse than any application I've ever paid money for: very few OSX keyboard shortcuts, horrid placement commands, tables, objects: everything moves of its own free will, 100% crap expose control (windows change at their whim), and many other problems.

32-bit, 64-bit, it doesn't matter. First, Microsoft just have to treat the Mac like a Mac, not like a Windows machine. If I could paste with no formatting via the ubiquitous alt-ctrl-shift-, that alone would save me probably an hour per day. Then if Expose transitions wouldn't plop me into another window altogether (only happens with this shyte suite of apps), it would be another 20-30 minutes saved.

Even if I could shift--s, it would be a huge 'hello'. The most embarassing thing, however is the dictionary which doesn't catch about 5/20 words I use to write middle-school English textbooks! Middle school! I can count on Office 2008 to fail about 40% of the time, to cause me lost time in almost every area, and to be a drag on all but template support.

Microsoft, who cares about 64-bit, just get your effins shyte soft working like an Apple app on the Mac. Right now, it is the WORST app I've ever bought on any platform.
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post #23 of 115
Typical myopic Micro$oft.
post #24 of 115
I think until Apple themselves gets all their apps to cocoa, this is just going to keep happening. They can't keep releasing new versions of their own apps in carbon and expect 3rd parties to do better.
post #25 of 115
This transcends incompetence. This is aggressively incompetent. By the next release after this one, it may be time to drop 32-bit support.
Mac user since August 1983.
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Mac user since August 1983.
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post #26 of 115
I can't wait to try this version out and see if I hate the interface as much as I hate using 2007 on my PC at work.

I've used a lot of tools that I've been annoyed with at first, but learned to appreciate. Office 2007 still frustrates me after more than 2 years using it. The Ribbon is NOT an advancement.

As for 64-bit, I can't say it matters much. Companies have a limit to resources, and it is hard to see any immediate motivation. It does say something about the bloat in the code that they can't get it converted to Cocoa after all these years.
post #27 of 115
I would be quick to dismiss this update as too little too late. But according to those that have seen it in action, it looks pretty good.

I hope it is a marked improvement. I have Office 2004 and would like to upgrade if its a good product. I have and prefer iWork but I get a fair number of Office documents sent to me and it is nice to have Office for the Mac for those occasions.
post #28 of 115
So what ever happened to Steve saying Adobe was the "last" major company to move to Cocoa... I guess Microsoft (and Apple... iTunes and most of their pro software still not cocoa) don't count.

Is Adobe the *only* company with their majority of apps in cocoa?
post #29 of 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by Eriamjh View Post

Do most users need 64 bit office? No.
Does it run in 64-bit snow leopard? Yes.
Will this stop most users from updating? Not likely.

Is this good for iWork? Yes.

Is it a fail? Not really.

Great synopsis Eriamjh!

Ps...I will stay with my iWork and upgrade that with every new iteration available!
post #30 of 115
Hmm... don't really care that it isn't 64 bit yet; glad Microsoft is heading in that direction. I imagine most everyone complaining in forums like this one probably isn't going to get a great performance increase out of 64 bit Office anyway. It would require some pretty hard-core use, but down the road that definitely needs to be done.

I'm glad to see they've improved the interface. People actually do like the ribbon layout, though I'm not used to it yet, and I think some of the compromises they've made between the two worked out well for them.

What they really need to do is make the program faster and more reliable. Office 2008 is utter trash—an embarrassment compared to the Windows version. The only thing I use it for these days is Microsoft Excel. If they can address the performance issues and other user interface issues (Pages is beautifully designed in terms of usability by way of comparison) that'll be a great step in the right direction.

In any case, I'm looking to the next iWork suite to take me an even greater distance away from caring about Microsoft Office. Numbers is still playing catchup, which is a shame because it has some absolutely ingenious features Excel can't even touch.
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post #31 of 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by anonymouse View Post

Because if they were identical, the Mac Office menu bar would just contain a single menu. for example, "Word", which would make for a pretty confusing user experience on Mac OS. The ribbon is confusing enough as it is for Windows users.

OK, smartass - toolbars, then... No matter what you think of either design it makes little sense to make them different from one another... is my point
post #32 of 115
The ribbon is what keeps me from upgrading my old Office. Excel is what keeps me from switching to an alternative.

Word is the application I most need to upgrade, as it crashes incessantly when doing reports with pictures, and has the least compatibility with the Windows version.
post #33 of 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by lfmorrison View Post

I suppose iTunes is also a "fail" because it it still 32 bit and uses Carbon, and you won't consider using it until Apple finally gets its act together.

Zing.

It certainly isn't fail. No one forced Microsoft to port Office to Mac (or now via Cocoa), they are doing it by their own graces, and having Office across both Windows and OS X benefits everyone. I actually like the layout of the Mac ribbon more than the Windows ribbon. As one who used Office 2007 for two years at my previous job and now has gone back to Office 2003 at my current job, going back is painful. You don't appreciate the ribbon feature until you've used it for awhile. People here who say that the ribbon is awful clearly haven't used it long enough.
post #34 of 115
cool, so when will they come to the ipad? 2014 maybe?
post #35 of 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by lfmorrison View Post

I suppose iTunes is also a "fail" because it it still 32 bit and uses Carbon, and you won't consider using it until Apple finally gets its act together.

This and iTunes isn't the only 32bit Apple app. I'm actually looking forward to the new Office and a return of some missing features. It definitely is more aesthetically pleasing than it's Windows counterpart.

I also hope I'm not the only one in hoping to see an Office for iPad.
post #36 of 115
I hope that 10.7 drops support for compiling Carbon apps, but continues to provide Carbon support in the runtime environment. I hope 10.8 drops runtime support for Carbon.
Mac user since August 1983.
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Mac user since August 1983.
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post #37 of 115
The biggest challenge to using Office that it is so slow. Even on a Mac Pro, for crying out loud.

Startup takes forever, pagination is like watching paint dry.

I assume that it's all interpreted intermediate-code that MS compiles into native on Windows, but that's just a guess. I can not think of any other reason why everything takes so long.

I don't really care about 32-bit vs. 64. I'd rather just be able to get my work done today instead of having to finish it tomorrow
post #38 of 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by aaarrrgggh View Post

The ribbon is what keeps me from upgrading my old Office. Excel is what keeps me from switching to an alternative.

Word is the application I most need to upgrade, as it crashes incessantly when doing reports with pictures, and has the least compatibility with the Windows version.

Why not move away from Office for everything but Excel files, then?
It isn't like iWork (or any of the alternatives) are expensive or anything...
The true measure of a man is how he treats someone that can do him absolutely no good.
  Samuel Johnson
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post #39 of 115
Microsoft is a relic of the past.
post #40 of 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by MJ Web View Post

Microsoft is a relic of the past.

agreed...everyone will be using iwork on ipad
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