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Well, what can I say... after spending almost four weeks on and off with
LO I finally have decided that, alas, it's not for me.

For a start, it's too slow: all three LO applications I've worked with
(Writer, Calc and Draw) are feeling sluggish on my PCs whereas MSO seems
quite nimble. Incidentally, I had a very similar impression quite a few
years ago when I installed, tested and removed a version of StarOffice:
this was virtually unusable on an admittedly underpowered netbook which
nevertheless ran old MSO XP (2002) just fine.

I get spurious error messages about Java RE not being installed whenever
I try to run a macro and (although I'm not using Base or any of the
Wizards) there are other places where this message unexpectedly pops up.

I believe users who deliberately keep away from those bits which
explicitly require Java should never see this sort of message. As it is,
any use of macros "almost" requires Java. Almost, because it's possible
simply to click away this annoying message: the fact is that Java is NOT
AT ALL required for executing LO Basic macros... perhaps somebody should
forward this tidbit to the developers;-).

Many of the help pages and manuals I found online seem to be more or
less out of date.

There are too many obscure half-bugs (or else stuff where I need obscure
workarounds). Last but not least, LO is simply too inconvenient,
unpolished in actual day-by-day use; this is very hard to describe in a
few words but LO somehow feels wooden, even "pedestrian" at times.

There are some very good things, sure, but simply not enough to warrant
the change and all the accompanying loss of productivity and bother when
modifying a long-running, well-oiled set of tools. As Pip Coburn writes
about change in the tech industry: "The industry acts as if change is
easy when it's actually quite difficult. Users will change their habits
when the pain of their current situation is greater than their perceived
pain of adopting a possible solution." Precisely so.

Additionally, I found community support not to be a strong point of LO,
at least on this list. (There was another user recently who complained
about that and I have to agree.) There may be forums out there on the
web but I can't say anything about those.

I had really, really high hopes for LO, because I'm sick and tired of
MS. Alas, LO, at least for me, just ain't ready for prime time. Perhaps
I should come back in another few years when LO has hopefully been
stripped of some of the layers that have built up over the decades...

Bye for now


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