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Used Excel for an extremely long time, now using OpenOffice...

6255 Views 42 Replies Latest reply: Apr 19, 2010 2:05 AM by Barry RSS
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Untmdsprt Level 2 Level 2 (375 points)
Currently Being Moderated
Apr 4, 2010 3:23 AM
I've been using Excel since about 1989, and so it's hard to switch from it to something else. Recently I've become fed up with Microsoft's serial number scheme, and now have legitimate DVDs/CDs practically worthless because I have used the serial number too many times. I also refuse to call India to have these validated. Because of all this crap, I've started using OpenOffice.

OpenOffice is nice, but it's taking me a long time to get used to it. Every thing about it is just "ok." There's nothing outstanding about it. I'm wondering if Numbers would be better. Most of what I do is for myself only.

I've looked at the tutorials for Numbers, but I'm wondering if anyone as made one for people who are switching from Excel, and need to be shown "here's what you did in Excel, now here's how it's done in Numbers."

Has anyone used all three? Would OpenOffice or Numbers be better to switch to?

Thanks.
Macbook 2,1 (2.16GHz Core 2 Duo), Mac OS X (10.6), 2GB RAM, 500GB & 1TB ext drives, Dual-band Airport, iPhone 3GS
  • Level 8 Level 8 (41,760 points)
    Numbers do a lot of things more easily than other products.
    Numbers is unable to do a lot of things that other products do.

    You are the only one able to decide if, *_for your own needs_*, Numbers is a good choice.
    Download the free 30 days trial version and you will be able to study it carefully.

    Yvan KOENIG (VALLAURIS, France) dimanche 4 avril 2010 12:45:25
    To be the AW6 successor, iWork MUST integrate a TRUE DB, not a list organizer !, Mac OS X (10.4.11)
  • Level 8 Level 8 (41,760 points)
    M…Soft products are not allowed to enter my home or my machines.

    Numbers offer 256 functions for formulas.
    XL offer more than 500.
    If the 256 available fit my needs, the product is functional for me.
    If they don't, the product is not functional for me.

    This is why I wrote that only you may decide if it fit your needs.

    A Ferrari may be required for some users
    but a Dacia fits the needs of many others.

    Yvan KOENIG (VALLAURIS, France) mardi 6 avril 2010 12:14:34
    To be the AW6 successor, iWork MUST integrate a TRUE DB, not a list organizer !, Mac OS X (10.4.11)
  • Jerrold Green1 Level 7 Level 7 (28,195 points)
    Untmdsprt wrote:
    ... I'm needing someone who can answer my question. Have you used all three equally...

    I will never catch up with the amount of time spent with Excel during my working life, so no, I've not used the three equally. Further, OO runs so poorly on my Mac that I use it only as a last resort. And, if this is possible, OO looks and feels worse than the real Excel thing.
    Numbers seems like it's more for things looking pretty than actually being functional.

    In the final analysis, we present our data as part of an argument or case to support our work. How it looks is a major factor in how it is received. Numbers is very functional. In many ways less so than Excel, and in some ways more. How you will perceive Numbers depends on your needs. Excel seems to try to be all things to all people. In fact, there are better programs out there for almost any particular use of Excel you can think of, but probably no program that does as many things "pretty well" as Excel does. You don't have to make an either/or decision. I have both Excel and Numbers, but I can tell you that having to do work in Excel is not something I look forward to.

    Jerry
    iMac G5 10.5.8 / iMac Core 2 Duo 10.6.3
  • Jerrold Green1 Level 7 Level 7 (28,195 points)
    Untmdsprt wrote:
    something as simple as typing in a series like Jan, Feb, and then have the spreadsheet fill in the rest requires me to look up how to do it in the manual. I think I will stick with OpenOffice for right now until I've read the manual for Numbers.

    I'm not going to say anything that might discourage you from reading the User Guides, but you will find that most things are close to being the same in Numbers as in Excel and very few are truly different.

    Good luck,

    Jerry
    iMac G5 10.5.8 / iMac Core 2 Duo 10.6.3
  • Barry Level 7 Level 7 (29,095 points)
    Untmdsprt wrote:
    something as simple as typing in a series like Jan, Feb, and then have the spreadsheet fill in the rest requires me to look up how to do it in the manual. I think I will stick with OpenOffice for right now until I've read the manual for Numbers.


    Jerrold Green1 wrote:> I'm not going to say anything that might discourage you from reading the User Guides, but you will find that most things are close to being the same in Numbers as in Excel and very few are truly different.


    Including the Jan, Feb... series of the example. OOo doesn't run on pre-intel Macs, so I used NeoOffice.

    Excel (Win): type Jan into a cell, grab the handle at the lower right corner of the cell and drag right (or down) to fill as many cells as desired with the months in succession.

    Numbers: type Jan into a cell, grab the handle at the lower right corner of the cell and drag right (or down) to fill as many cells as desired with the months in succession.

    Neo did not retain the selection border and handle when data was typed into the cell, so it was necessary to confirm the entry by pressing return, enter or tab, then reselect the cell before dragging the handle. Otherwise the process was the same as Excel and Numbers.

    For some series—1, 3, 5 for example—all three applications require two entries (to establish the interval) be made and selected before dragging the handle. Numbers and Excel will fill a series of alternate months. Neo will not.

     
     
    BUT like Jerry, I would NOT discourage anyone from reading the Numbers '09 User Guide (and the iWork Formulas and functions User Guide as needed).

    Regards,
    Barry

    PS: I share some of your frustration, but in the opposite direction. Most things are similar enough in Excel to what I'm used to after years of using AppleWorks and months of using Numbers that I can usually figure out a way to do it in Excel. When I can't, the Help files are available.
    B
  • Level 8 Level 8 (41,760 points)
    You must use tha month name used by the running application.

    If Numbers is running in English, january is OK.
    On my French machine, I must start with janvier.

    I don't know how months are named on your machine.

    Yvan KOENIG (VALLAURIS, France) mercredi 7 avril 2010 11:33:54
    To be the AW6 successor, iWork MUST integrate a TRUE DB, not a list organizer !, Mac OS X (10.4.11)
  • oldgustaf Level 1 Level 1 (20 points)
    Month fill works fine on my iMac and I'm in Wales
    iMac 2.66GHz Intel Core 2 Duo - 4GB 1067 MHz DDR3, Mac OS X (10.6.3)
  • Level 8 Level 8 (41,760 points)
    The automatic filling behaves flawlessly.
    If it doesn't on your machine it's that you made something wrong.

    How is it behaving if you run Numbers from an other user account ?

    How was your system updated to 10.6.3 ?
    If you used 'Software Update', it's time to download the combo updater and apply it.

    http://support.apple.com/kb/DL1017

    PS: look at my number of points. It will give you an idea of the way I help users in these forums, even those which are impolite !

    Yvan KOENIG (VALLAURIS, France) mercredi 7 avril 2010 16:45:13
    To be the AW6 successor, iWork MUST integrate a TRUE DB, not a list organizer !, Mac OS X (10.4.11)
  • dbrandt6 Level 1 Level 1 (30 points)
    I first updated with Software Update and immediately started to notice some very weird things going on with Numbers. After seeing several posts about the benefits of using the Combo Update, I "re-updated" using Combo and the Numbers issues went away. Automatic filling behaves flawlessly now here as well.
    2.0 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo Mac Mini, iPhone 3.1.3, Mac OS X (10.6.2)
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