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Microsoft Office 2004 - Page 4

post #121 of 193
Quote:
Originally posted by mrmister
I have a prerelease version of Office 2004 running now, so if anyone has any questions I'll be happy to talk about them.
So far I've mainly used Entourage and Word, and I have to say that both are noticably more responsive than v.X was--I feel like I'm using Office 2001 again.

Also, I dig the 3 column view in Entourage--didn't think I would be able to adapt, but it's a breeze and much, much better.

Does it...

Support .PST files?

Display the Exchange GAL properly?

Allow users to change their Exchange/AD password properly?
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post #122 of 193
Quote:
Originally posted by mrmister
Back on track: I have office 2004. is there anything people need to know about it?

I'm guessing you don't have the pro version. too bad; I'd love to hear about VPC 7.

Anyhow, on to my questions:

1. Do the page home and end buttons on your keyboard finally do anything in Word?

2. Any significant changes whatsoever to Messenger? Any hint voice or video might be added at a later date?

3. Will Word now keep footnotes on the same page as the text if you tell it to (rather than letting them trail on to the next page)?
post #123 of 193
"Support .PST files?"

What are these? I never run into them in, so I haven't tested them.

"Display the Exchange GAL properly?/Allow users to change their Exchange/AD password properly?"

Sadly, I have no Exchange servers to play with--I know that's a big area of concern for corporate users.

"Do the page home and end buttons on your keyboard finally do anything in Word?"

They go to the beginning and end of the document respectively.

"Any significant changes whatsoever to Messenger? Any hint voice or video might be added at a later date?"

I don't use MSN, so I'm not the best one to ask--I actually never think of that as part of office, but you're right, it's there. I do know that Messenger is incorporated throught Entourage, so that you can click once and have Messenger launch, etc.

"Will Word now keep footnotes on the same page as the text if you tell it to?"

Yes, footnotes appear to work--I just formatted some this week, and they obeyed.

Apologies to everyone for my own deficiencies in using power features of Office--I'll still try and answer anything I can.
post #124 of 193
how is powerpoint?

text rendering?
does it have automatic guides like keynote?
New, better themes?
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post #125 of 193
Continuing with the PowerPoint questions:

Is it now easier to organise slide order for under "Custom Animation"? In Office v.X you have to move around with these annoying up and down arrows if you want to organise animations. Any chance this is now drag and drop?
post #126 of 193
Thread Starter 
Monday is the day it will be released apparently, with the pro version coming about two weeks later. Anyone got their shopping cart cued up for a purchase, or is everyone playing the "wait and see" game?

I am really concerned this is basically a fluff update. MS hasn't released any information about additional new features beyond the stuff that's in the demo. No word on stability improvements improvements either although I guess they'd never phrase it that way for fear of legal hassles.
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post #127 of 193
Quote:
Originally posted by Moogs

[...]
No word on stability improvements either although I guess they'd never phrase it that way for fear of legal hassles.

mrmister's testing - noted in an earlier post in this thread - seems to suggest that the new version is at least more responsive. I'll be buying it, although I may wait a few months.
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post #128 of 193
"a new key feature in office 2004.. the scroll bar. we at microsoft thought this was a very very cool new key feature. der-her-her."

I swear, Microsoft sticks all the retards on the Mac Development team. ^_^ Anyone else get that impression?

I mean hell... Roz was having a tough time keeping the drool in her mouth at the keynote. ^_^

=P

- Xidius
post #129 of 193
Thread Starter 
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post #130 of 193
That's silly. I deplore the MS monopoly as much as anyone, but the Mac Business Unit has some extremely bright people in it. The Project Manager in Entourage this time around has outdone anything Apple's come up with their crazy Mail/Address Book/iCal/iSync/Palm conduit kludge.

And demeaning Roz because she was intimidated by the bright lights of the MacWorld stage says more about you than her.

----

The strangest part yet was Nisus' attempt today to steal Microsoft's thunder with the announcement of Writer Express 2.0.

The product is wordprocessing only, won't ship till Summer, and doesn't include any whiz bang features or Mac-specific integration. I'm in the market for an MS-alternative, and the Nisus announcement seemed to confirm to me why I should be considering upgrading to Office 2004.
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post #131 of 193
QUESTION:

How has the address book changed in Office 2004? Back when Outlook Express jumped from 4 to 5 its address book got dumbed down (the ability to navigate your entire mail list via groups was removed and never returned, even when it became Entourage).

Apple's Mail app has done it "right" in my opinion and I'm interested in finding out if the MBU guys went back and refined the interface of the address book, especially when you've just completed an email and need to navigate through your contacts list to add recipients.

Hope this was clear enough, if it wasn't please just tell us as much as you can about the interface for the address book. This will be a key determining factor in how soon I consider upgrading.

Thanks!
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post #132 of 193
Quote:
The product is wordprocessing only, won't ship till Summer, and doesn't include any whiz bang features or Mac-specific integration.

It's a cocoa app for fscks sake. I think that makes it pretty mac specific. It's also a Mac only app. What exactly is your definition of Mac specific?

Here's a list of my favorite MS Office whiz bang features:
Still extent eps embedded graphic bug from Word 5.1
Extra-modal dialog boxes. Did you know it was easier to edit styles in 5.1, i.e. before they 'fixed' the interface for the OS X version?
Inability to grasp OS X file structure, i.e. it goes in ~/Library/Application Support.
Non-standard widgets.
Finally unicode, but not full support for RtL languages.
Lack of file compatability with Windows versions of Office.
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post #133 of 193
"Lack of file compatability with Windows versions of Office."

I will say that this is much better, at least in my humble experience, with 2004. There is now a full compatability testing suite, so you can test flight files for all MS Office formats on all platforms. It's a good feature.

"How has the address book changed in Office 2004?"

To be honest, it doesn't seem any different than the old address book to me, except that it is noticably faster to use. I don't really understand what feature your looking for with the individuals within a group, but I suspect it is not implemented.

"No word on stability improvements either."

Well, I am running on a beta build from February and I have to say that Word and Entourage are more stable than they used to be--only one crash, which for Office is pretty good in my experience over two months.
post #134 of 193
Does Word save files longer than 32 characters?
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post #135 of 193
As I reported earlier in the thread, yes it does.
post #136 of 193
Nice. Do Excel charts imported in to Word still show up as X'd out pictures in PC Word?
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post #137 of 193
Quote:
Originally posted by cowerd
It's a cocoa app for fscks sake. I think that makes it pretty mac specific. It's also a Mac only app. What exactly is your definition of Mac specific?

I was thinking of something along the lines of being able to automatically address letters using Address Book, or maybe integration with Filemaker and Keynote.

Give us some reason to forsake Microsoft other than blind hatred.

I'd love to see a project manager that didn''t lock us into MS Office.
I think this will be Office 2004's killer feature.
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post #138 of 193
I'm getting Office 2004 for Word, Excel and Powerpoint.

I am not going back to entourage after using Mail, Addressbook and iCal.

While the project center looks interesting, it would be more interesting to me if MS would allow it to work with the Apple apps.
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post #139 of 193
I've been using Word 2004 all day today, properly working with it. I'm going to buy it. It's really, really good.

Observations: it doesn't do that irritating thing where it can't decide where to put the last line on a page anymore. Nice. It doesn't take 30 seconds to drop in your graphic paragraph break using autocorrect anymore. It's instant. And it doesn't crash when you click on the place where it should be. It doesn't fall off to sleep for a second mid-sentence anymore.

It works alright for me, anyway.
post #140 of 193
Quote:
Originally posted by Hassan i Sabbah
Observations: it doesn't do that irritating thing where it can't decide where to put the last line on a page anymore.

Oh, thank goodness! It's little fixes like this that are going to make the upgrade worthwhile.
post #141 of 193
Quote:
Originally posted by Frank777
The strangest part yet was Nisus' attempt today to steal Microsoft's thunder with the announcement of Writer Express 2.0.

The product is wordprocessing only, won't ship till Summer, and doesn't include any whiz bang features or Mac-specific integration. I'm in the market for an MS-alternative, and the Nisus announcement seemed to confirm to me why I should be considering upgrading to Office 2004.

What are you talking about? NWE is an excellent product, and as much as I'm a huge fan of Microsoft Word, I found the 1.1.x releases of NWE to be very tempting. The new 2.0 version adds in ALL of the features from the wish list I sent Nisus, including Styles, Tables and Footnotes. For a ground up written-in-Cocoa project, Nisus Writer Express is coming along fast and furious.

NWE integrates with Cocoa's services function, allowing you to integrate in the features offered by other Cocoa programs. It also renders text with Cocoa goodness and supports the Mac OS's built in spell checker. It utilizes sheets and drawers very well, and is all around a much more Mac-like product than Word.

Integration with Address Book for letter writing would be an excellent addition. Though, frankly, so would integration with Entourage. Send it as a requested feature to Nisus, and maybe it'll show up in version 2.1 or 3.0. They're writing code fast and furious over there, and I'm staggered by the completeness of this 2.0 release. They're quite responsive to customer wants.

Just as soon as they get their product finalized, I'll do an update to my Word Processor Shootout column. I think it will fare quite well.

Kirk
post #142 of 193
Thread Starter 
Anyone else give Office 2004 a spin today by chance? Seems Amazon does not have them in stock the way they've been advertising... now 1-2 week ship time. Which is pretty much what everyone else's site says.

I've really started to lose some faith in the accuracy of Amazon's product listings. Suggested retail prices are often over-stated in order to make their price look more heavily discounted than it is and their availability dates seem to be correct about half the time now.

Bezos seems to be losing a grasp on the quality control there... too many half-baked retailer parternships and "beta stores". They need to refocus what they sell IMO.
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post #143 of 193
As I posted in another thread, my legally purchased copy of Office X 2004 is on the FedEx truck for delivery today. I'll report back once I've installed it and run it through its paces.

I deleted Office X from my iBook last year to save disk space. When I wanted it again, I couldn't find my install disks. I tried a few other Mac word processing apps, but none of them cut it for me. I reverted to using BBEdit (and Office for Windows on my wintel desktop) for heavy writing.

Personally, I simply can't get around Microsoft Office in today's business and academic world. And it's a good product, so there's no reason for me to avoid Office.

BTW: I only use Word and Excel, plus PowerPoint to open up the occasional PPT presentation. For e-mail I am wedded to Eudora and have no interest in Outlook/Entourage.

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post #144 of 193
Apple's mail is scrumptulescent. I recently moved from Entourage, and just tried out thunderbird. Both great programs, but they don't focus on their core functionality enough. I love the fact that i can easily read how many unread messages i have just by glancing at the dock. I love how everything is drag and drop-able, and everything is an object, including email addresses. Really nicely done Apple!

I'll look at Mac office 2004, but i don't think it'll steal Mail's spot in the dock

I'll need the latest Word and Excel though, because I'm a cutting edge freak.
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post #145 of 193
I received my copy of Office:mac 2004 this afternoon. I chose to install only Word and Excel because I am running out of space on this old iBook's 10GB HDD. So I am not able to report on the new project center and features in other appls at this time.

So far, Word:mac and Excel:mac 2004 seem to run more smoothly and fluidly than the previous versions. So even if there were no new features, the increased speed alone makes this a worthy upgrade for me. I am running an iBook/500 with 576MB RAM and Mac OS X 10.2.8. Once I finally get a new 12-inch PowerBook, which will bring me OS X 10.3 Panther and faster hardware, I imagine the Office apps will fly. I am pleased.

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Until we get a 3 lbs sub-PowerBook, the 12-inch PowerBook will do.
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post #146 of 193
Has anybody yet confirmed that you can import mailboxes, contacts and schedules from the Apple Apps into the new Entourage?
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post #147 of 193
Quote:
Originally posted by >_>

I mean hell... Roz was having a tough time keeping the drool in her mouth at the keynote. ^_^

=P

- Xidius

It's not easy to enunciate and pronounce words when you're deaf like Roz is.
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post #148 of 193
Despite the fact that Office 2004 seems to be shipping, I wonder when the official Microsoft release date will be. I ask since if you go to Mactopia, it's still a pre-orderable product.

On that note, anyone here familiar enough with campus computer stores to know how long it will take the new version of Office to trickle its way down to the Microsoft Student Select programme, thus making it nice and cheap for me?
post #149 of 193
Thread Starter 
Weird. The Amazon listing has dropped to 24 hours now. Maybe I spoke too soon, but my concerns stand, especially related to quotations of retail pricing for many books. Anyway, if the positive performance comments continue to roll in I'll probably place my order within a week or two.
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post #150 of 193
Quote:
Originally posted by Moogs
Weird. The Amazon listing has dropped to 24 hours now. Maybe I spoke too soon, but my concerns stand, especially related to quotations of retail pricing for many books. Anyway, if the positive performance comments continue to roll in I'll probably place my order within a week or two.

And a national chain up here in Canada, CompuSmart, lists it as "in stock." Perhaps we'll see an official release announcement tomorrow.
post #151 of 193
I've been using Office 2004 all day (Mac Store here had it in this afternoon: Student & Teacher Edition)...

Couple of quick thoughts:

1. It is not the revolutionary upgrade I was hoping for...

- Entourage is no better in Exchange envorinments than the X version. There is no .pst support, no real Exchange server support etc. In fact, I still can't connect via Exchange to my 5.5 exchange server, but IMAP works fine.

- The vertical build of Entourage is terrific, and may be enough in itself to keep me from going back to Apple's Mail program. It lets you see everything instantly including a FULL email. Very nicely done.

- Entourage crashes everytime I try to change fonts from within the application (signature etc.; not within preferences). Happens on BOTH my G5 and Powerbook, so it appears to be a serious bug.

- Project Center seems useful, but requires a good deal of manual effort: assigning people etc. this can't be avoided and shouldn't be considered a negative; however, assigning e-mails to projects is best done manually as rules allow for either people and/or Subjects to filter, not useful if you have colleagues who don't use consistent Subjects for project related e-mails.

- Icons (dock) are the same but darker).

- PowerPoint presentation tools are superb, with everything the presenter needs on the laptop display while the full presentation is up on the secondary monitor (projector).

- New PowerPoint transitions (ripped off flagrantly from Keynote) are a let-down, and are nowhere near as smooth (cube) as the Keynote ones. Looks like a stutter, not a smooth roll.

- New PowerPoint templates abound.

- Excel page view is a great addition, but launches as the default which can be disorientating for older books not made for printing.

That's about all I can think of right now. Ask away if you're still awaiting your copy and I'll try to test anything/everything that's posted.
post #152 of 193
You can import mailboxes, rules etc. from Apple's Mail into Entourage, but that's it. No support for instant import of Contacts, Calendars etc.


Quote:
Originally posted by Frank777
Has anybody yet confirmed that you can import mailboxes, contacts and schedules from the Apple Apps into the new Entourage?
post #153 of 193
PS>

Palm Conduit for Entourage X does not appear to work with 2004, so hopefully there is an update coming.
post #154 of 193
Thanks.

With the software already in so many hands, tomorrow's gotta be the PR day.

Anybody want to take a guess what time the Apple front page will go all 'Microsoft Office' on us?


I say 10:15am EST.
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post #155 of 193
Quote:
Originally posted by Eugene
It's not easy to enunciate and pronounce words when you're deaf like Roz is.

That's what MICROSOFT would have you believe. ^_^ *snicker*

- Xidius
post #156 of 193
Can anyone who has begun using Mac Office 2004 comment on compatibility with Office XP? What about Keynote compatibility with the newest version of powerpoint? What is the compatibility tester all about?
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post #157 of 193
Is there anything new in Word besides Notes?
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post #158 of 193
Quote:
Originally posted by Aquatic
Is there anything new in Word besides Notes?

- Versions included in the File Menu, which is great for tracking the progression of a file.

- I don't recall if the Navigation Pane was in X, but it's in 2004. Lets you see the document like you do a PDF in Preview or a PowerPoint with the thumbnails down the left.

- Controls fade out after about 30 seconds, becoming mostly transparent. Other than looking neat, I can't see the usefullness in this since if Word is the foremost application.

- Compatibility is a solid addition, as it prompts you when you select SAVE AS to check the file, then delivers a report explaining what versions of Word (Mac or PC) might have a problem with the file and why. Of course, I've never had a problem sending/recieving files in an all PC Office 2000 environment, but...

- Minimized menus use genie effect into the toolbar.
post #159 of 193
Quote:
Originally posted by luigi
Can anyone who has begun using Mac Office 2004 comment on compatibility with Office XP? What about Keynote compatibility with the newest version of powerpoint? What is the compatibility tester all about?

I only have one colleague running Office XP, and I've noticed no issues with the exchange of files (But I didn't really have any with X).

PowerPoint cannot import Keynote files, but exported keynote files coming into PowerPoint hold formatting a little better (not perfect) than they did in X. Transitions are lost, even if they are now available (cube does not stay as cube when exported) but I suspect this is a Keynote issue not a PP issue.

PowerPoint is perhaps the biggest improvement, as the speaker's view is superb. Everything you need to see as a presenter on your laptop, with a full screen current slide view on the projector (second monitor).
post #160 of 193
interesting.

Has the windows version of powerpoint had this for long?
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