iWork or Office?

Posted:
in Mac Software edited January 2014
I've recently purchased a G4 PowerBook and am looking into purchasing a word proccessing program. I've used both demos that my PB came with (pages and word) and I'm not sure which to buy.



Which one do you own and why? I'm hoping this well help with my decision.



This is my first mac, by the way.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 19
    I use Word because i love the notebook view and i like the way i can move stuff. I know Pages can be compatible but if i create it with Pages and backup then i need it at school, i would like to be able to open it.



    I know word is bloated but i work around it. I am just not comfortable enough within pages.



    Plus, with word you also get Excel and, if you want it, Entourage ( i prefer mail.app)



    Now, bear in mind, i got it at the education discount so it was closer to iwork in price.
  • Reply 2 of 19
    Overall I prefer Pages as it seems that I focus more on what I am doing. I do have to have Word & Excel for work, however, and use Office about as much as iWork.



    While I think Apple will expand iWork in January the only option for word processor AND spreadsheet right now is Office. The student version saves a ton of money if you go Office.
  • Reply 3 of 19
    Well here's the thing...I got iWork demo in my iLife 05 software box. I tried out Pages (didn't really have a use for Keynote) because I was getting tired of Word...



    - Seems slow and always lagging

    - Sometimes would just crash for no apparent reason

    - I didn't like the way it managed styles



    I have to say that I like Pages. At first, I felt it was a little limited because it didn't have everything Word had. But then I realized that I didn't use most of those features anyway. I like the way Pages handles styles and I just find some things easier to work with.



    Now mind you, I tried a lot of different word processors for the Mac and chose Pages because of its simplicity and well thought out features.



    Sure, Pages has some things lacking that I hope they fix in version 2.0.



    All I can say is that you should go to an Apple store somewhere and play around with it. I don't know if Apple offers a demo of Pages on their website or not or I would say download and install it on your new Mac.
  • Reply 4 of 19
    Thanks for all your inputs.



    My PB came with both Word and Pages demos so I have been playing around with them, but not nearly enough to get the hang of 'em. I'm still getting used to the mac feel (being a PC guy since windows 3.1 or whatever it was called) so I'm trying not to make my final decision based on how things look, I guess.



    As of right now, I'm leaning more towards Pages. Mainly because it's an Apple product of a Microsoft product. Other reasons don't really apply to me I guess because I don't need a computer for work (I work in the food business, and if I needed a computer I'll just use mine) and I'm taking some college courses and would only be using my computer for homework and such, however I'm taking business courses and and may need Excel (but I still have a PC so..)



    The only reason I would ge Word is for compatability reasons and I can't really find a must-need reason for it. Plus, I've heard Pages can convert documents into Word documents if neccisary, right?
  • Reply 5 of 19
    adamraoadamrao Posts: 175member
    Pages can export documents into Word format, but unless you're working on complex documents with multiple revisions and various authors, exporting to PDF is much easier and more compatible.



    I used Word for years as a PC user and found it annoying each and every time I had to use it. I'm a musicology student and write a lot each day, so I've been searching for a word processor better than Word. When I switched to the Mac, my options were slightly better - Mellel, Nisus, etc. - but none of those could match Word considering the price and I wasn't comfortable with software made by a company other than Microsoft or Apple.



    Along comes Pages. I used the full 30 days of my iWork trial edition and found Pages to be "nice." Not great, but nice. I deleted it from my hard disk and went back to using Word. The more I used Word, though, I started asking more questions. Can I do such-and-such in Pages instead? Bought the full version.



    And haven't looked back. Pages beats Word hands down in my opinion. There are a few minor things that Pages needs to add to be perfect for my uses. (1) A keyboard shortcut for inserting a footnote (if anyone has a way of working around this, I'm listening!) and (2) the ability to insert character footnotes that aren't number-based (an asterisk for example). These are really minor quibbles, though, because the product works exactly as advertised.



    If you're concerned about using styles AT ALL, I think you should use Pages. Word is an excellent tool when you know how to use it, but it is extremely difficult to get to know. It's undergone many changes over the years and the code is very, very bloated. I have a Office trial edition on my new iMac that needs a reinstall this week and Word has crashed three times since I tried using it again. No thanks. Pages is my WP of choice.



    My twenty cents.
  • Reply 6 of 19
    Thanks for your opinion, adamrao.



    After playing around a little more with Pages, I think I've decided to purchase iWork. And if I really need to use Excel for something, I'll just use my old PC.



    Thanks for the help, everyone!
  • Reply 7 of 19
    jbljbl Posts: 555member
    You might also take a look at Nisus Writer Express. I find it more intuitive to use than either Word or Pages and it has rtf as its native format so it is automatically compatible with Word. The lastest version is still in beta testing but it seems pretty stable...



    http://www.versiontracker.com/dyn/moreinfo/macosx/19296
  • Reply 8 of 19
    Well, there was two things that sealed the deal for me with Pages...



    - Pages can create objects like Word can. You can even add really nice drop shadows to the objects.



    - Worked well with images...although I would mind a crop in place like Word does. Instead you have to use masking. But only if you turn the image into a floating layer.



    Pages still has some ways to go. But like someone else said earlier...it's just more pleasant to work with.



    I tried Mellel, Nisus Writer, and Mariner Write before Pages. Pages just seemed to work more like I think.
  • Reply 9 of 19
    jbljbl Posts: 555member
    I will agree that if you want to do any sort of page layout with images you probably want to go with Pages. NWE's image handling is really a week point. However, if you are trying to write a manuscript, for instance, NWE has some very nice features. I find the tool drawer more accessable than Pages' inspectors. It gives you easy access to word count and the theseurous which are buried in Pages. I find NWE's implementation of styles to be far more intuitive and, at the same time, far more powerful. And the fact that its native format is rtf means hassle free interchange with Word (Word just reads rtf files and will automatically save it as rtf).
  • Reply 10 of 19
    benroethigbenroethig Posts: 2,782member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by kenaustus

    Overall I prefer Pages as it seems that I focus more on what I am doing. I do have to have Word & Excel for work, however, and use Office about as much as iWork.



    While I think Apple will expand iWork in January the only option for word processor AND spreadsheet right now is Office. The student version saves a ton of money if you go Office.




    I concur. In addition, Pages is one of those Apps you will either love or despise. I've used it myself, but I'm not comfortable with the user interface.
  • Reply 11 of 19
    frank777frank777 Posts: 5,807member
    I hope Apple has spent the year adding Open Document support to Pages, Keynote and the forthcoming spreadsheet app.



    This development could mean that Apple would be in position to pick up a number of government contracts.
  • Reply 12 of 19
    What i would do is buy pages, and DL office. That way you have both, and you're supporting apple's R&D budget, not Balmers yacht tax
  • Reply 13 of 19
    Quote:

    Originally posted by JBL

    And the fact that its native format is rtf means hassle free interchange with Word (Word just reads rtf files and will automatically save it as rtf).



    As a side question, why does Pages (or TextEdit, for that matter) not seem to support all of the features of RTF, such as footnotes or inline graphics? Most other word processors seem to.



    For what it's worth, I use Pages and I'm happy with it. Despite its flaws, I find it offers a much more comfortable working environment than Word, and exchanges files with Word well enough for my purposes.
  • Reply 14 of 19
    I didn't know RTF could support footnotes or inline graphics?
  • Reply 15 of 19
    I find iWork, or rather Pages to be better than Word on simple things. If you need to use complex stuff, then Word is for you, but for what I do with iWork (a lot of simple word processing, poems, articles, novels) it's perfect. It takes a while to get used to its UI, but very good and very light on resources.

  • Reply 16 of 19
    Quote:

    Originally posted by MPMoriarty

    I didn't know RTF could support footnotes or inline graphics?



    Yep. At least when MSWord makes them (and, I understand, several other word processors). Here's are examples of RTFs created by Word, TextEdit and Pages. If you open the Word RTF with either of the two Apple apps, they will strip out the graphic and the footnote. Pages and TextEdit both create "RTFD" files, which are actually packages containing the text and graphic elements of the document and are, therefore, unreadable by Word (and, while Pages actually includes the text of the footnote, it merely includes it as part of the main text).



    I don't know enough about the RTF specification to tell, but it does seem as if somebody here isn't properly implementing it. Since RTF is a Microsoft thing, my first guess would be that that party is Apple, although it wouldn't be entirely out of character for MS to deviate from their own spec.
  • Reply 17 of 19
    kcmackcmac Posts: 1,051member
    I have imported some fairly complex documents made in Word to some of the Mac only word apps out there. Pages is by the far the best importer of Word. While it isn't perfect, for version 1 it is really quite good.



    I would like to see Apple adopt a few of the features that Nisus has established regarding the formatting palettes. I like how in Nisus they expand or can be "torn off" or allow you to make your own set up. I like how the Dictionary/thesaurus is integrated.



    Across the board I guess I just don't really like how Apple has established that the font, color and inspector palettes are always free floating and huge in size. (Well, at least on a 12 inch laptop.)



    Regardless of this, I still find Pages to be my most used word processor. I don't ever really use TextEdit any more. MS Word I use when compatibility issues make me. I am really looking forward to Pages 2 but version 1 has been pretty good for my needs.
  • Reply 18 of 19
    frank777frank777 Posts: 5,807member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by kcmac

    I have imported some fairly complex documents made in Word to some of the Mac only word apps out there. Pages is by the far the best importer of Word. While it isn't perfect, for version 1 it is really quite good.



    Agreed. So far, Pages has done the best job for me as well.



    Quote:

    Across the board I guess I just don't really like how Apple has established that the font, color and inspector palettes are always free floating and huge in size. (Well, at least on a 12 inch laptop.)



    The interface is definitely the weakest point. I'm leaning toward this being a NEXTish thing that we're going to have to complain loudly about to get it changed.



    Pages' interface is reminiscent of Marketcircle's Daylite, which I think was itself a NEXT app at one time. It has the same small icons which give few clues along with a toolbar that is inflexible. Pages has the same problem.



    Who ever heard of a word processor where you can't Bold, Italicize and Underline from the toolbar?
  • Reply 19 of 19
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Frank777

    Who ever heard of a word processor where you can't Bold, Italicize and Underline from the toolbar?



    I know! The UI is its weakest point. By the way, DayLite looks very much like Pages, or should I say, Pages looks very much like DayLite.



    And people accuse others of being copycats.
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