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I'm new here so I hope no one minds me just jumping in. LibO usability
is something that is near and dear to my heart so I thought this was a
good thread to 'get up all in'.
On 10/23/2010 8:11 AM, Frank Esposito wrote:
* it does not match MS Office functionality exactly (this is what the
world uses, so to get people to adopt LO, they need to have what they
But I think it *does* match what most home (and many business) users
need. I think the software is "almost there" and could be quickly and
fairly easily refined to meet the remaining "must have" needs.
* It has issues with MS doc and docx files (yes I know MS formats in
an insane way and does not follow standards)
I do a lot of OpenOffice training and migrations and that is the #1
issue I hear from users. I believe solving this one problem is going to
solve 30% to 50% of user problems and issues with the software.
No, Microsoft doesn't follow standards (and they don't do that for the
exact reason LibO and Oo are having difficulty with now) but near
perfect compatibility is absolutely essential.
* LO needs to match every single MS Office function, and then provide
what MS Office is missing
I don't know that I'd say *every* function in MS Office. There are some
things that Office can do that probably 80% of even hard core users
don't need. Hit the big ones, do focus groups on what people need, and
start there. Good enough for a start IMHO.
* The interface needs to become refined (think iphone refinement),
maybe even adding the dreaded ribbon or option to switch between the
Absolutely agree! As someone who used to be a Microsoft partner, I have
to say that Office has a fantastic look about it. It's sexy, it's sleek,
it's functional. Oo and LibO don't even come close to comparing UI wise
* perfect the spellcheck system and advance grammar and formatting
Thankfully, I don't think any of these will be terribly difficult. There
is already a lot of technology out there that could be used for each of
these functions. We just need to investigate them and implement them.
We could institute some kind of feedback program such as the test
pilot model that Mozilla uses
with Firefox 4. We can also look at how MS destroyed Word perfect in
market share to dominate the World Office suite business market.
I think we could learn a *lot* from the way Microsoft plays ball. While
we're not into the vendor lock-in that they are, many of the same
tactics they used could easily be used against them. The only issue is
you need a truly competitive technology to compete that way and, I don't
think LibO is *quite* there yet, even if only because of the issues you
Then LO needs to innovate new features and stabilize its current
feature set, this is how Firefox, and later Chrome won the browser
wars (in my opinion at least).
Yep: investigate, implement, analyze, iterate.
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