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Apple's iWork suite rumored to go web-based - Page 2

post #41 of 76
Yesterday I attempted to convert some old AppleWorks documents to Pages, and was reminded why I usually don't use iWork. First, there was no obvious way to make this conversion, leaving me to cut and paste. Then having to deal with formatting problems afterward, including the non-intuitive way of creating Left Tabs. Ultimately I decided to just leave my docs as .cwk's as making the conversion was just too much frustrating work. One measure of how bad Pages is is that I use Word instead, an app whose interface is the poster child of Microsoft user-unfriendliness.

The prospect of porting Pages (as is) to the web would be to make it even more unusable than it already is. Please, Apple, invest in making Pages the word processor for the rest of us. Right now it is a half-baked mess.
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post #42 of 76
Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnny Mozzarella View Post

[
I will be curious to see how their implementation compares with 280slides.

I've tried 280slides. Makes my 4GB 2.8GHz brand new MacBook remind me of my old Macintosh SE. Or, actually, it's much slower than writing in WriteNow on the SE.

Turning iWork into a web app only is a stupid idea. Providing web versions of the applications in addition to the real stuff might be a good idea, though.
post #43 of 76
Because Pages and Numbers weren't sluggish enough.

I think it's pretty obvious that any possible web versions of iWork would supplement -- not replace -- the desktop apps. I'll put all my chips on it.
post #44 of 76
Quote:
Originally Posted by hmurchison View Post

Frankly, I welcome online access to iWork but if they intend to take it web app only then i've purchased my first and last copy of iWork.

I'll continue along my path and replace iWork with 3rd party apps when they offer a superior solution

I'm ok with the "Cloud" as an addendum to standard desktop computing.

I could be wrong but I don't see how Apple could release iWork as a web app only at this point. We are a ways away from ubiquitous internet access.

In do think Apple will transition iWork to a web app however. When LTE (4g data transmission) is implemented by ATT and Verizon then I think web based computing will really heat up. We know Google are heading in this direction with their Chrome based web browser.

Once ATT and Verizon have got 4g networks up and running, I expect that all Apple laptops will have that capability built in. You'll simply sign up for a carrier when you do the initial set up on a new machine. Seems like I read somewhere that MS is going to transition Office to a web based app as well.

I think Apple will offer a web based iWork as an addition to mobile me so they can work out the kinks. This would be a good idea as they have struggled to provide good service with mobile me so far.
post #45 of 76
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ireland View Post

Yes. It should be free, $99 is an embarrassment at this stage. Step off that fanboi stage please.

shoulda woulda coulda. There's always the Google stuff for the Free crowd.
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post #46 of 76
I agree, there are whole new apps the Mac platform needs. Transferring existing apps from platform to platform seems like it should be a low priority.

Managers at Apple may be listening too much to their technical people who have stars in their eyes about the web platform, or else trying to be too strategic against Microsoft, instead of simply trying to make a better product.

This is where the good sense of Steve Jobs would have come in and saved the day in the past, bringing the focus back to the consumer, instead of the engineers or the competition.
post #47 of 76
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post

Another problem with these "cloud" apps... if you have no net access, you're out of luck. Several power outages recently have really brought that home for me.

Power outage = Computer outage, not just the net.

But yes relying on web access, which may or may not exist or may cost an arm and a leg, is IMHO a baaaaaaad idea.
post #48 of 76
Quote:
Originally Posted by Stormchild View Post

Because Pages and Numbers weren't sluggish enough.

I think it's pretty obvious that any possible web versions of iWork would supplement -- not replace -- the desktop apps. I'll put all my chips on it.

or they'll let you download the old version for free because the new one is short of useful, like iMovie.
post #49 of 76
I'm totally not liking this idea.... sure, CLOUDY applications are great for doing quick on-the-fly stuff when you don't need the full client version of the application, but to think a web app can or should replace a full client app is just blatantly wrong and bad for business. So, I guess those that don't have Internet are out of luck and I hate uploading files over the net. Guess the kiddies can't use Keynote for classroom presentations anymore.

IMO -- I can only see Apple doing this to compliment their client versions, not to replace it.
post #50 of 76
Quote:
Originally Posted by backtomac View Post

I could be wrong but I don't see how Apple could release iWork as a web app only at this point. We are a ways away from ubiquitous internet access.

In do think Apple will transition iWork to a web app however. When LTE (4g data transmission) is implemented by ATT and Verizon then I think web based computing will really heat up. We know Google are heading in this direction with their Chrome based web browser.

Once ATT and Verizon have got 4g networks up and running, I expect that all Apple laptops will have that capability built in. You'll simply sign up for a carrier when you do the initial set up on a new machine. Seems like I read somewhere that MS is going to transition Office to a web based app as well.

I think Apple will offer a web based iWork as an addition to mobile me so they can work out the kinks. This would be a good idea as they have struggled to provide good service with mobile me so far.

Remember, WiMax networks are starting to actually get built, ahead of 4G networks, and Clearwire (CLWR) has the 'edge' here. Apple has actually been hiring WiMax engineers for future products.

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post #51 of 76
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post

Remember, WiMax networks are starting to actually get built, ahead of 4G networks, and Clearwire (CLWR) has the 'edge' here. Apple has actually been hiring WiMax engineers for future products.

True.

Sprint and Clearwire are on shaky ground financially but if they can survive the Great Recession, then they might just be in position to take advantage of cloud computing with their 4g network.

ATT and Verizon may delay the rollout of their 4g networks due to the poor economic environment. This can only help Clearwire and WiMax.
post #52 of 76
I like the idea, I think including iWork with MobileMe would be awesome; however, Apple demonstrated total suckiness when it comes to developing web-apps e.g. .Mac and MobileMe.

I have no confidence that they'll do a good job or that they have anything remotely functional yet.
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post #53 of 76
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post

Remember, WiMax networks are starting to actually get built, ahead of 4G networks, and Clearwire (CLWR) has the 'edge' here. Apple has actually been hiring WiMax engineers for future products.

Happy new year.
WiMax is 4G.
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post #54 of 76
No. Just no. If it goes web only, that is. The MobileMe launch was an absolute disaster, and I still have occasional trouble just keeping three machines synced. I was *that* close to canceling, considering the unreliability of MobileMe, plus the added feature of no bookmarks. WTF? If it wasn't for the size of iDisk storage & the relative ease of moving files there, I would have been out, after a search for alternatives. I just didn't have the time to really dedicate to finding one, and things smoothed out -- some.

If they offered something like an online version of iWork while keeping it locally accessible, I could see that being of use. I'm all for integration, but I still want to be able to use software I paid for when I don't have any internets, & I don't want all my eggs in the "basket in the sky."

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post #55 of 76
keep the regular apps and add these. life w/o these on local media would be dark.
post #56 of 76
If this rumor turns out to be true, does this mean that the "cloud" version of iWork would work on a Windows PC then (running Safari of course)?
post #57 of 76
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave K. View Post

If this rumor turns out to be true, does this mean that the "cloud" version of iWork would work on a Windows PC then (running Safari of course)?

Good point Dave. Apple is becoming more and more dependent on PC users (iTunes, iPhones, MobileMe) for reaching revenue/profit goals. I could definitely see them wanting to push forward with web tech because it's cross platform by default.

Hey do that if you want but I still want the desktop apps.
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post #58 of 76
Quote:
Originally Posted by hmurchison View Post

Good point Dave. Apple is becoming more and more dependent on PC users (iTunes, iPhones, MobileMe) for reaching revenue/profit goals. I could definitely see them wanting to push forward with web tech because it's cross platform by default.

Hey do that if you want but I still want the desktop apps.

The Mobile/iPod draws people to buy Macs. The share of total Mac [non iPod/iPhone] growth continues to dwarf industry standards. It's the cake with a very enticing icing on top.
post #59 of 76
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave K. View Post

If this rumor turns out to be true, does this mean that the "cloud" version of iWork would work on a Windows PC then (running Safari of course)?

That is a good point. A cloud app which is platform independent would be away to take on Microsoft Office without ever making iWork a "PC" app per-se.

But yeah, I still would want it on my hard drive.
post #60 of 76
Web apps DON"T interest me for personal use, for work, fine - I don't pay for that stuff.

I am NOT interested in a subscription model for any personal application - I refuse to be anybody's cash cow - including Apple...
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post #61 of 76
I can see this rumor being half true. I think/hope the meaning of "web-based" from the source involves iPhone connectivity. Without having to install a full version of iWork on the iPhone, users will be able to view and edit iWork and Office documents. With how terrible the MobileMe launch was, and how bad the product continues to be (there are still no alarms in iCal) there is no way we are at the point iWork can go completely on-line. It just doesn't make sense to even bring this rumor out.
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post #62 of 76
Quote:
Originally Posted by bloggerblog View Post

Happy new year.
WiMax is 4G.

More accurately, Clearwire is WiMax, at&t is LTE.

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post #63 of 76
Quote:
Originally Posted by backtomac View Post

True.

Sprint and Clearwire are on shaky ground financially but if they can survive the Great Recession™, then they might just be in position to take advantage of cloud computing with their 4g network.

ATT and Verizon may delay the rollout of their 4g networks due to the poor economic environment. This can only help Clearwire and WiMax.

Actually, since the new Clearwire (CLWR ... for a few weeks their symbol was changed to CLWRD) formed, they are now fully funded by the myriad companies contributing $3.2 billion to make this baby monster happen. The recession is a perfect time for them to go great guns and roll out their plans to get ahead of their competitors.

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post #64 of 76
I hope the continue to offer full featured version as well as limited Web version. I love Google docs... but when it comes to actually finalizing a doc, then I invariably copy and paste to a word processor or spreadsheet. I'd like to see Apple's version of docs on the web... it has to be better than whatever MS is brewing... and probably better than Google's. Android sort of proved they are close... but not quite there yet in terms of user interface.
post #65 of 76
This could be responsive if the majority of the application was actually pre-existing on the user's Mac... ala Google Tools or something similar... but then it really isn't "web" applications either... just connected apps. The idea behind web apps is universal access... not download a bunch of "tools" to get my word processor document to open on a public terminal somewhere... If the tools already existed on my cheap, linux-based netbook, however... then I'd LOVE that. Go Apple... become the software company and let the others fight over nano-profit margins on low cost devices.

I have a five year old laptop that has latest ubuntu version of linux on OpenOffice that is very zippy compared to my much newer desktops running Windows Vista and Mac OS. I actually enjoy running OpenOffice and Google Docs on that POS computer.
post #66 of 76
It's probably also no coincidence that Safari 4 will have the ability to save web applications to the desktop similar to what Google Chrome and Firefox' Prism does. I'm not happy about the idea that valuable development time might be shifted from the desktop version of iWork to some pipe-dream. Despite living in a country with a very good infrastructure I'm still often without an Internet connection (think: trains) but need to have access to my applications anyway.

It's also incomprehensible that with the latest push of web applications that the iPhone currently can't be used as an Internet modem (Internet sharing) with Bluetooth. Every Smartphone I've encountered so far had this ability and it makes this "Internet everywhere" idea far more feasible.
post #67 of 76
Dumb: Replace (Supplant) iWork desktop apps

Smart: Supplement iWork apps

There's some irony here as well. Using the open source SproutCore framework to create files with an unpublished format (Keynote, Numbers, Pages). Take a look at 280 Slides (http://280slides.com/), created, I'm told, by ex-Apple employees.

It looks like Keynote but only supports import/export of MS Powerpoint. Why? Apple hasn't published the format and, so, using it might bring a law suit.

Apple Position: What's mine is mine, what's yours is negotiable.
post #68 of 76
Quote:
Originally Posted by flowney View Post

Dumb: Replace (Supplant) iWork desktop apps

Smart: Supplement iWork apps

There's some irony here as well. Using the open source SproutCore framework to create files with an unpublished format (Keynote, Numbers, Pages). Take a look at 280 Slides (http://280slides.com/), created, I'm told, by ex-Apple employees.

It looks like Keynote but only supports import/export of MS Powerpoint. Why? Apple hasn't published the format and, so, using it might bring a law suit.

Apple Position: What's mine is mine, what's yours is negotiable.

I'm more inclined to believe this update

http://www.macblogz.com/2009/01/01/a...e-mostly-free/

Quote:
Apple is expected to unveil a new suite of web-based applications that play off of iWork. They will primarily be extensions of their desktop counterparts not replacements. As Weintraub notes, the entire iWork suite that Apple currently offers (and iMovie too), will be given core functionality additions online. Based on Weintraubs information, we were able to confirm the upcoming cloud-based push, as well as some new specifics about pricing and the way Apple will unveil the information.

This sounds far more plausible. It allows Apple to extend the iWorks brand onto platforms that normally would have been shut out. If the online versions can cover the core functionality in a slick and effective manner then it becomes yet another potential "switcher" tool for those using MobileMe with PC.

I'd love to be able to create documents using my Desktop iWork and then choose to either send the document to my MobileMe space for online retrieval/editing or saving it to my local computer.

That way I can modify documents on the road with any suitable network connection and browser and know that these modifications can be merged back to the desktop.
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post #69 of 76
Quote:
Originally Posted by Feynman View Post

This would be bad.

Maybe if they make it so the files can be easily viewed on the web.

That would be good.

I'm fairly certain that's what this would entail anyway. MobileMe syncs with existing programs on your desktop. Selling the suite as online only would cause so many problems that Apple would have absolutely no control over that I can't ever see them taking that route. I see this as mainly an online file server where you could quickly and easily retrieve any documents created with the programs (in fact, I see this as an evolution of the file storage system that already comes with MobileMe).
post #70 of 76
Quote:
Originally Posted by flowney View Post

It looks like Keynote but only supports import/export of MS Powerpoint. Why? Apple hasn't published the format and, so, using it might bring a law suit.

Apple Position: What's mine is mine, what's yours is negotiable.

Did they say that, or are you just assuming that? To me, that explanation sounds like FUD on your part rather than fact.

Why do I think that? I opened a Keynote "file" (a special folder) and found a gzipped index file. I unzip the file and open it in a text editor and I find a *plain text* XML file, and all the formatting is plain-text information. I see nothing in that XML that tells me that Apple is hiding something or trying to keep the format proprietary. If Apple wanted to hide it, they would at least encode it as a binary or encrypt it. All the other files needed for the presentation, such as photos or videos, are files inside the package, intact and usable by any program without changes. This stuff is not that difficult. I'm not an application programmer and I can understand what's going on in that file.

I did find this:
http://getsatisfaction.com/280north/...idget_280north

I see nothing in their answer about a lawsuit liability. Their concern about the format changing without notice, well I don't know about that, I expect file formats to change a bit with every new program version, but not within a bug fix update. There is a file format version key in the file.
post #71 of 76
They can't take everything online only: there are lots of users who for various reasons are not connected to the Net.

 

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You're = a contraction of YOU + ARE as in, "You are right" --> "You're right."

 

 

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post #72 of 76
Quote:
Originally Posted by pdiddy View Post

What I like most about this plan is the slowness, unreliability, and limited feature-set of web apps!!! Thank you, Apple, for giving us what we really want!

I think many of you are going to be pleasantly suprised
post #73 of 76
Isn't HTML 5 supposed to make it easier to view different media types inside the browser? I would think any "web features" in the new iMovie would be to make it easy for properly coded HTML 5 pages to read the meta data and load the appropriate plugin to play the video.
post #74 of 76
Presumably, this will also allow document editing from mobile devices too - copy/paste has to come though.

I'm not personally keen on web-based software but I use web-based email every day and have done for the past few years without a problem.

Email is a bit different because you don't really have to deal with images and the file sizes aren't very large. Dealing with a 10MB+ document over the web is not something I'd like.

Google have realised this and added to their web-based document suite with Google Gears, allowing better performance. I think it just syncs and caches data to speed things up and probably allow offline editing.

Apple have already added a database cache to Safari in a recent version and I wasn't sure what it was for. This could put it to good use. It defaults to 5MB and although that doesn't seem like a lot, it actually holds a decent amount of plain text data and markup.

Pages documents are just gzipped XML. This can be loaded into a non-relational database. If there are no image changes, all the editor has to do is store the changes to the text in the offline database and do a very minimal database sync with the server. Images can be uploaded in the background and possibly downsampled if they are too big.

Google Gears currently doesn't support Safari but Apple could make their iwork software Safari-only.

The online service Apple can offer may not be online-only software but an alternative to the offline suite with a lower cost.

Collaborative editing can also be a feature.

I'm not against the idea, it has clear advantages so I'll wait and see how they've implemented it. The more and more business management systems I see like CRM tools etc, they seem to be moving more towards being web-based. Adobe offers a web service too:

https://www.photoshop.com/express/landing.html

Software As A Service business models are gaining ground the faster and more prolific networks are getting. IMO, the main thing holding them back are the limitations of relational databases, which don't easily map complex data structures onto them in a time or performance efficient way.
post #75 of 76
Quote:
Originally Posted by oilerch50 View Post

I think many of you are going to be pleasantly suprised

Remember not to confuse the web with the cloud.
post #76 of 76
Quote:
Originally Posted by Marvin View Post

It defaults to 5MB and although that doesn't seem like a lot, it actually holds a decent amount of plain text data and markup.

According to the Safari help file you will be prompted if an web application requires more storage space than the default.

Quote:
Google Gears currently doesn't support Safari but Apple could make their iwork software Safari-only.

Actually, it does since a couple of months. Just go to http://gears.google.com/ with Safari and you will be offered the correct version.
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