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AppleWorks 7: What does it need to be great again?

post #1 of 33
Thread Starter 
I said before and I'll say it again, AppleWorks 6 leaves much to be desired.

What do you think Apple needs to do to reinvigorate this useful app to its version 5.0 glory?

First off:

1) Speed!

2) ...
post #2 of 33
I hate to say this, but AppleWorks is lame.
post #3 of 33
Thread Starter 
Remember version 5.0?

That was done right, good amount of features added and was fast.
post #4 of 33
[quote]Originally posted by MajorMatt:
<strong>Remember version 5.0?

That was done right, good amount of features added and was fast.</strong><hr></blockquote>

Still not much compared to M$ Office (although you get AppleWorks with a Mac for free, unlike M$ Office of which they charge you an arm, a leg, and a kidney).
post #5 of 33
Thread Starter 
Ofcoarse, its only 1/5 the price.

Besides, AW has the features I use most often not like Office where I get ten zillion useless features, for me anyway.
post #6 of 33
Well for one thing it would be nice if Apple followed their own gui standards i.e use sheets. But besides that, what if apple developed a version of Open Office under their own name. They could use the underpinnings of the open source code, and write a new gui in cocoa, similar to Chimera. Use the "engine" of open Office and give it the Apple treatment. This would give them a level of functionality and compatibility of Office, but include it for free with every Mac. The bonus of this solution is that they don't have to write it from scratch and offer a full Office solution for every mac user, not just those willing to shell out $500 dollars for Office X. Let existing users download it for free. Name: iOffice
post #7 of 33
Go back to 5 and start the upgrade over.


I liked AW 5 and hate AW6. It's total crap.

1) Spell check doesn't work on selected text any more. That is it spells the whole thing and not just the selected.

2) Get rid of those grabbable buttons that move instead of click when I try to click them.
post #8 of 33
If Microsoft offered the Word + Entourage Special Edition again for $150 that would satisfy the needs for most users.

Most people want to be able to do a few things on their computer including browsing the web, checking their e-mail, and word processing.

Microsoft Word is an very solid choice for a word processor for many reasons. Microsoft Entourage is one of the top e-mail and PIM applications.

It would be awesome if Apple worked out a deal to bundle Word + Entourage for the iMac/iBook and Office for the Power Macs and PowerBook but it may be unrealistic.

Those are just my thoughts.
post #9 of 33
[quote]Originally posted by Cal:
<strong>If Microsoft offered the Word + Entourage Special Edition again for $150 that would satisfy the needs for most users.

Most people want to be able to do a few things on their computer including browsing the web, checking their e-mail, and word processing.

Microsoft Word is an very solid choice for a word processor for many reasons. Microsoft Entourage is one of the top e-mail and PIM applications.

It would be awesome if Apple worked out a deal to bundle Word + Entourage for the iMac/iBook and Office for the Power Macs and PowerBook but it may be unrealistic.

Those are just my thoughts.</strong><hr></blockquote>

$150 is still way too much...
post #10 of 33
[quote]Originally posted by FreshApple:
<strong>

$150 is still way too much...</strong><hr></blockquote>

Yeah, but it's better than it is now.
post #11 of 33
What does it need?


to be rewitten


pay OmniGroup. Obviously Apple doesn't want to allocate sufficient resources
post #12 of 33
How 'bout facilitating plug-ins? Everything from file converters to spell-checkers/dictitionaries/translators, to paint plug-ins. Maybe have different 'packs' of plugins that could mold your Apple works to anything from a simple web-page/presentation builder to a fully office compatible M$ killer. You choose the amount of simplicity/features you can afford/need.
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post #13 of 33
Matsu: Exactly. Start with a basic page (something like TextEdit) and some rules for interaction and design and provide different plug-ins and packages of plug-ins. And see how much their so-called "Open Source community" can help out.

This way Apple can make a package of "approved" and nessesary plug-ins for the average customer and those who want more/different spell checker/Table/seek-n-replace/aso can download what they want.
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post #14 of 33
Or rename Office:X to AppleWorks 7
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post #15 of 33
that sort of flexibility is exactly what opendoc was trying to accomplish. since it was rather abruptly axed, i doubt we'll see apple walking that road again any time soon (shame, that...). but the cocoa-izing of openoffice sounds like a good idea. if they could keep it properly maintained and compatible, so we didn't end up laughably behind the "real" opensource version.
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post #16 of 33
Apple should toss Appleworks out an have a few engineers work on the OSX OpenOffice port instead. Make it aquafied, and cash in on the open source developers making it.

Release it for free w/ every mac as one more incentive to use Mac.

It has Word (and Excel?) interoperability, and is the best competitor for Office, and sells for the attrctive price of free.

Please Apple, if you are reading this, DO IT NOW!
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post #17 of 33
Thread Starter 
How about this:

Greatly improve the database feature to rival Microsoft Access and the ability to import Access databases.

(Notice how MS doesnt port Access to the Mac)
post #18 of 33
1. be an exemplary Aqua citizen -- speech, sheets, icon with Dock menu and badges, the new toolbars, services, etc.

2. "Everything is an object."

3. push Appleworks Applescripting and other plug-in packs

4. integrate better with Homepage, iMovie, etc.

5. better Windows file translation/interoperability

6. KISS, (let Office be the whiz-bang package) and install it on ALL new Macs, even the pro models.

[ 03-03-2002: Message edited by: BuonRotto ]</p>
post #19 of 33
I'm under the assumption that AppleWorks is getting a major overhaul for version 7.

Why? It needs to be the replacement for Microsoft Office if MS jumps out of the Mac market this August.

You can go on and on about how Office v. X is the greatest Office suite ever, but if MS decides to jump out of the market, then Apple or Nisus are your choices.
post #20 of 33
Will there ever be Star Office and Corel Word Perfect Suite products for the Mac?

Both have gotten good reviews as PC alternatives to Office -- especially Corel's latest offering which was rated as a very good replacement to Office by more than one PC outlet. They've got their creative apps and procreate series for the mac, but no business app line-up. When? If ever... <img src="graemlins/hmmm.gif" border="0" alt="[Hmmm]" />
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post #21 of 33
[quote]Originally posted by Fran441:
<strong>I'm under the assumption that AppleWorks is getting a major overhaul for version 7.

Why? It needs to be the replacement for Microsoft Office if MS jumps out of the Mac market this August.

You can go on and on about how Office v. X is the greatest Office suite ever, but if MS decides to jump out of the market, then Apple or Nisus are your choices.</strong><hr></blockquote>

I hope they are overhauling it for v. 7. As it is now, I use AW just for simple client notes that don't really require anything fancy. Even then, it can be a chore. I would love to be able to get rid of MS Office, but until AW will work flawlessly with office docs, I can't. I've got too much of my academic life tied up in .doc formatted documents. I don't have the time to try to figure out where my formatting was correctly presevered or not.

That said, I feel that we have more choices than just AW or Nisus. Right now, the options are limited to programs that run in X11, but they will be ported to OS X shortly. (No real information, but why would anyone want to use X11 on OS X if they could get their programs to work natively?) Then we'll have some real alternatives. Who knows, maybe they'll be an XML based word processor that's completely platform independent some day. Hey, a fella can dream, can't he??
post #22 of 33
A word processor that works in XML would, I suspect, be the first real do-able office app that is truly write once read anywhere. A super text editing browser! Perfect. Doesn't matter if you're using Windows, OSX, linux, palm, whatever. The app opens correctly formatted in every singal platform, because the environment is identical.
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post #23 of 33
I agree with most of what has been written above. A basic application which can be expanded through plug-ins is a great idea. XML is an ideal format (Speaking of which, I hope it's on the cards for OmniWeb?). Apple needs to pay whatever Microsoft asks for Office compatibility.
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post #24 of 33
I want Apple's products to include the ability to open ANY, repeat ANY text file liike BBEdit can.

A grammar check would be nice. Not a full-out update-on-the-fly check like Office uses, but a check under a menu somewhere.
post #25 of 33
What Apple has now is a incredibly rushed Carbon version of an Application that could be great.

If they implement, as many have said above, some basic UI guideliens. Employ sheets, customizable windows/toolbars.

One thing that my mother likes about MS Office is that it has buitl in Avery Standard Templates for printing labels and other stuff like that. However, it was still hell trying to do that in Office

Back to AppleWorks, Apple has all these great built in technologies that could be used. Maybe have it save a PDF file wiht the regular file becuase not all Windows users can open a AppleWorks File.

Use that elongated aqua button in the top right. Hit it and you have all your ready to use icons for Bold, Underline, text indentaion, size, font, colour. Hit it agin, you just get a regular window.

Apple has a ready Find and Replace thing in Cocoa. All they have to do it employ it, along with the Font Panel and Spell checker. Also, the builtin ruler of TextEdit

Just imagine TextEdit with impressive menu icons. It would be an AW6 and TextEdit hyprid, hopefully.\\
post #26 of 33
Is AppleWorks really so bad? I wrote a lot of papers and lab reports in Claris Works 5, and AW 6 on OS X seems pretty much the same app. It might be decidedly mid-90s in style and features, but hey, Word 5.0 was probably the best word processor ever, and it's at least 12 years old..

Some apps need constant updating, and some don't.

That said, i'd be happy to see improvements in AW. It's just that i really don't think it's so horrible as to justify all the bitching going on here. It's just a simple, basic-yet-flexible 'works' app.

-robo
post #27 of 33
[quote]Originally posted by robo:
<strong>Is AppleWorks really so bad? I wrote a lot of papers and lab reports in Claris Works 5, and AW 6 on OS X seems pretty much the same app. It might be decidedly mid-90s in style and features, but hey, Word 5.0 was probably the best word processor ever, and it's at least 12 years old..

Some apps need constant updating, and some don't.

That said, i'd be happy to see improvements in AW. It's just that i really don't think it's so horrible as to justify all the bitching going on here. It's just a simple, basic-yet-flexible 'works' app.

-robo</strong><hr></blockquote>

it is a crappy application that is bloated and takes no advantage of OS X other than running natively. It's an eyesore and should be trashed and started from scratch.
post #28 of 33
Thread Starter 
Yep, there is no doubt about it, it has to be totally rewritten in Cocoa.

I would like to see:

Good database part, ability to import access document

Better pagelayout abilities (think so?)
post #29 of 33
[quote]Originally posted by MajorMatt:
<strong>
Greatly improve the database feature to rival Microsoft Access and the ability to import Access databases.
</strong><hr></blockquote>

Lets do that and kill FileMaker... Or better yet, why not make the new AppleWorks, give it out for free and include the full version of FileMaker, won't all those people at the AppleInsider boards be happy...

And for those saying $150 is too much, for MS Office Applicaitons thats still a great price considering Word stand-alone is $399. I'm sure its still more appealing than AppleWorks to most people, considering they can use what the rest of the world uses but still have a great Mac like app.

Personally I think Apple should consider including the Word + Entourage bundle in their iMacs and iBooks instead of AppleWorks. Then they can also stop spending money on developing AppleWorks.
post #30 of 33
Majormatt said:
[quote]How about this:

Greatly improve the database feature to rival Microsoft Access and the ability to import Access databases.

(Notice how MS doesnt port Access to the Mac)
<hr></blockquote>

How about: Toss Appleworks out, speed up openoffice port to OSX, including aqua widgets et al, (BTW, Openoffice/staroffice are same sh*t, different pile)
and use postgresql or MySQL for the database?
No, the bazaar cannot satisfy users. Neither can the cathedral. Nothing can satisfy users, because software is written to enable rather than satisfy, and because most users are mewling malcontents...
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No, the bazaar cannot satisfy users. Neither can the cathedral. Nothing can satisfy users, because software is written to enable rather than satisfy, and because most users are mewling malcontents...
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post #31 of 33
To me, AW 6 and 5 can hold their own against much more expensive solutions, but while its price makes some people think it's a toy, others simply don't realize this becuase its default setup is kind of poor. The toolbars are slapped togbether and a bunch of preferences are off by default which greatly improve its usefulness (fractional character widths for example). Inserting or linking objects always defaults toAW file types in the dialog, which is nothing short of annoying!

Here are a few more specific improvements I could use:

1. Larger presentation slide layouts. Up to 1024 x 768 at least.

2. Take advantage of Quartz both with its rendering (some fonts look terrible with Quickdraw doing the work -- not very WSIWIG at all), plus its PDF output.

More control over PDF output would cinch it for me (i.e., bitmap resolution and compression), but also RTF, XML and other more portable and standard formats would be great.

3. Real page guides, not just margins.

4. Make sure it can open Word documents (including spreadhseets) the first time, not like the long wait for translators we had with AW6. same with outher file formats within reason.
post #32 of 33
OK.. i have to admit i was put off when i first saw AW 6 with the kiddie style huge button bars and other such crap. But if you just close those windows (and leave them off as the default setting), it's a lot cleaner. Also, turn on fractional widths, and turn off autogrid in the drawing app.

Sure, sheets, and long file names (to name a few) would be nice, but who really cares? I'm just happy this 'classic' Macintosh app runs (and runs well, IMHO) in Mac OS X.

-robo
post #33 of 33
Maybe they can use the page layout technology in iPhoto to make those books. I mean, right now it is very limited in it. Yet,they could expand it.

Make an app to compete with PageMaker M$Office <img src="graemlins/smokin.gif" border="0" alt="[Chilling]" />
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