office apps

Polytropon freebsd at
Tue Jun 8 13:55:44 UTC 2010

On Mon, 7 Jun 2010 22:28:04 -0600, Chad Perrin <perrin at> wrote:
> I've never had a client who wouldn't take either PDF or plain text. 

And five minutes later, they call you by phone and ask how they can
edit the PDF file... :-)

Just a friendly sidenote:

> On
> the other hand, clients who prefer Word DOC(X) but will take plain text
> if they "must" have a tendency to immediately open it in Word, save as
> DOC(X), then send the friggin' thing back to me in that format after
> making some changes.

You are aware that there is not "the" DOC format? The many
various "Word" programs use slightly different formats, and
rendering a document heavily depends on the current environment
"Word" is running in, e. g. which fonts are installed, even
which printer is installed - all this can have influence on
how the document is opened.

Furthermore, the DOCX format isn't really an open format. It
*claims* to be standardized, but it's not; even MICROS~1 didn't
implement it properly, and there are still blobs inside the
XML, which can lead to problems.

There are many problems you can encounter in import/export
settings. So the only way to be sure is to use a standardized

I've worked in a setting where interoperability was the main
goal, because there were BSD, Linux, Solaris, Mac OS X and
even "Windows" machines, and our choice was OpenOffice, which
worked excellently across the platforms. It wouldn't have been
possible with MICROS~1 binary garbage in between. :-)

> I keep hoping the day will come when people who prefer MS Word are the
> rarity, rather than me being the odd man out.

It *will* happen, just consider the costs and the growing
uncomfortability of those programs (not counting those who
regularly use pirated copies to have "the same pictures at
home" as they know them from work). :-)

Magdeburg, Germany
Happy FreeBSD user since 4.0
Andra moi ennepe, Mousa, ...

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