Ah, the universal question... What do you NEED it to do... That's a
question only you and your professors and course requirements in the
future can answer.
Overall, I don't think you'll have a problem. IMO, your biggest hurdle
may be a professor who insists on submittals in either .doc or .docx
format. I've yet to stumble on to a word processor that is 100%
compatible with MS Word in this respect. The same probably applies to
Excel spreadsheets, and I know it happens with PowerPoint. A friend
just tried to open a PowerPoint doc using both the latest version of
Impress from Libre Office and Open Office, and it was a royal pain.
But as someone mentioned, try to stay away from complex documents as
they will be more problematic.
My suggestion would be to submit your papers in PDF format. While LO,
OO, MS Office, and lots of programs offer PDF file export, not all
programs have that export feature. But on the Mac Mini you say you will
be using, it doesn't matter. When you are ready to create the final
document for submission to your professors, from ANY program, select
Print. In the lower left corner of the dialog box is a PDF button.
Click on it, and you'll be able to create and store a PDF on your hard
drive, and anyone with a PDF reader can read and annotate (mark it up
electronically) the file and return it to you. Then, on the Mini,
simply open the file in Preview and you should be off to the races.
FYI, the iWorks apps are not a "default". They are not included with
Macs when you buy the computer, they are purchased through the App
Store. If you were to save and submit a file in Pages file format, your
professor would also need to have Pages in order to read it . However,
all three programs will save a document in MS Office file formats. Be
aware that you will need to know what features are supported between the
programs. Keynote has features that are unsupported in PowerPoint, and
I'm sure the reverse is true.
Pages 09 does have comments, I don't know about the current version.
I've read in the past in a Mac magazine that Apple removed some features
from the current iWorks offerings.
The fact that OU has the software installed implies their professors (at
least a portion of them) have no problems with files created with the
Mini. Ask your professor. :-)
Mac OS X 10.8.5
"My brain is like lightning, a quick flash
and it's gone!"
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