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cyrys51 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
I just bot a macbook pro yesterday and i am wondering what i should buy. iworks or ms office 2011. Basically my wife uses spreadsheet to pay bills, and sometime i have to write papers for school or work. I am just concerned that if i write a paper in iworks the professor wont be able to open in in microsft word. Please help!

macbook pro, Mac OS X (10.6.6)
  • neuroanatomist Level 7 Level 7 (31,690 points)
    iWork can save files into MS Office formats. As long as your documents don't have a lot of complex formatting (e.g. page layout stuff such as a newsletter), it works well.

    iWork is substantially cheaper - form the App Store, each app is $20, and if you don't need to create presentations, you can skip Keynote and get Pages/Numbers for $40.
  • eww Level 9 Level 9 (52,975 points)
    Another possibility is [NeoOffice|http://www.neooffice.org/neojava/en/index.php], a freeware, open-source MS Office workalike. The same caveats about formatting apply to it as to iWork, but it reads and saves files in MS Office formats and the price is certainly right. I use both iWork and NeoOffice and have no need for any MS software at all, despite exchanging documents frequently with MS Office users.
  • J D McIninch Level 5 Level 5 (4,060 points)
    You could track bills in a spreadsheet, but that's a horrific misuse of a spreadsheet.

    That aside, you can do this about as easily in Numbers as Excel, though Excel is a better spreadsheet application -- save for Numbers superior presentation. Numbers (from iWork) is more like a specialized word-processor where it's devoted to hosting spreadsheet objects on the pages.

    As far as a word-processor goes, I personally prefer iWork's Pages over Word. It's cleaner, simpler, behaves like a native Apple application, and it's much better at page layout/formatting. Word, on the other hand, is far better for creating labels, and has better indexing and footnoting capabilities (by a wide margin). So, again, it depends on what you need. Certainly, Pages is cheaper.

    With regard to giving documents to your professors... iWork's Pages can create (and open) Microsoft Word documents and does a fairly decent job of it. There's some differences in the capabilities of both programs and those will result in differences in presentation when Pages creates or loads a Microsoft Word document. For example, there's no Word equivalent of some of the graphic manipulations you can perform on images, so in Word the images appear in the unmodified form. However, Pages can also output PDF - which your professor will be able to open and it will look precisely as it does in your Pages program. I would suggest doing that over creating Microsoft Word documents in Pages, regardless how well Pages does it.

    Finally, iWork and Microsoft Office are not the only players in town. OpenOffice and NeoOffice are free office suites (spreadsheet, word processor, presentation software, database (think Microsoft Access), etc.). They support Microsoft Office formats very well and can be configured to default to using Microsoft Office file formats. Feature-wise, they are basically Microsoft Office 2005. The only issue with OpenOffice (or it's variants, NeoOffice or LibreOffice) is that they don't implement any platform-specific features whatsoever. There's no iPhoto integration, no use of OS X image manipulation features, etc. It's very consistent between Windows, OS X, Linux, etc.
  • Munas Level 4 Level 4 (1,260 points)
    I use MS Offie'11. Firstly because I recently switched to Mac form Windows and I am more familiar with these products. Second reason I do not use iWork, even I heard lots of good words about Pages, is - I expect newer iWork version. However, I have Keynote and it does its job well.
    I think either word processing software you choose, you always can print/save it as PDF and other people can read it. PDF is not good option if you expect others to make changes to the document you send.
    If your needs are very basic you can use one of free options or buy cheaper Apple iWork products, now ones are available one-by-one via App Store.
  • cyrys51 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    so where exactly do i go to download them one by one becuase i only need pages and numbers, i am new to the mac world so be specific please!
  • rkaufmann87 Level 8 Level 8 (47,250 points)
    cyrys51 wrote:
    so where exactly do i go to download them one by one becuase i only need pages and numbers, i am new to the mac world so be specific please!


    The App Store! Look on your Dock and you should see an icon for it or you launch it with Spotlight by typing App Store.
  • neuroanatomist Level 7 Level 7 (31,690 points)
    cyrys51 wrote:
    so where exactly do i go to download them one by one becuase i only need pages and numbers, i am new to the mac world so be specific please!


    Assuming you're running 10.6.6 as your profile states, click the App Store icon in your dock or select Apple menu > App Store, and there's a Quick Link for iWork a little way down on the right hand side.
  • macosxvswindows7 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Wait. Before you buy you can take a trial of iWork at http://www.apple.com/iwork/download-trial/ .

    Personally I hated iWork and am currently taking a trial of Microsoft Office 2011 (which I love). But I am probably just going to use Open Office.org when the trial expires,
  • Mac_Man_X Level 1 Level 1 (35 points)
    MS Office is far more comprehensive than iworks, plus saving as an office file from iWork *****. From an apple gy who hates microsoft.
  • Munas Level 4 Level 4 (1,260 points)
    you might try Ms Office for free as well
    https://www.microsoft.com/mac/trial
  • macosxvswindows7 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    I bought Microsoft Office because after the trial expired it was so much better then iWork and Openoffice.
  • Kenneth Cohen1 Level 1 Level 1 (65 points)

    Open Office, NeoOffice etc. are all pretty fragile and can be easily crashed, so if you have serious work to do I wouldn't bother with them.

     

    iWork has been an excellent product for many people, but its applications don't have the same level of sophistication as Office 2011. Some examples: Pages can't do cross-referencing, can't assign different page setups to each section, and its mail merge tools aren't as easy to use as Word 2011. Excel 2011 comes with VBA, which Numbers lacks.

     

    So the choice between iWork and Office 2011 depends on your needs. You can get a trial version of Office 2011 and you may be able to do the same with iWork.

  • YupI'mAdane Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I'd both have Iwork and MS Office 2011 on my new Macbook pro 2011. And I have to say that, Iwork is a lot of better than MS Office 2011, and then is more comfortable.

     

    Buy Iwork.

     

     

    cyrys51 wrote:

     

    I just bot a macbook pro yesterday and i am wondering what i should buy. iworks or ms office 2011. Basically my wife uses spreadsheet to pay bills, and sometime i have to write papers for school or work. I am just concerned that if i write a paper in iworks the professor wont be able to open in in microsft word. Please help!
  • Phange Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I have both iWork '09 and Office 2011, so I think I can answer this objectively.

     

    Unless you're fundamentally averse to features that are both occasionally complicated but also incredibly useful once you learn them, Office 2011 is simply better. However, to be fair, I'll state my opinions on the three primary applications of Office and iWork

     

    Pages/Word - Pages, in typical Apple tradition, is simple to a fault. This is great for people who need nothing more than basic and quickly-accessible word processing features. It comes with good templates for people who don't have to worry about professors auto-failing their papers. The fundamental problem is that Pages occupies a somewhat uncomfortable position of having just enough compatibility issues with Office to make it sort of a joke for the workplace and in schools where you email your assignments to professors, and not really offering a lot of particularly useful or unique features over Office. If you're marginally attunted to Office shortcuts, then this argument is exacerbated tenfold by the fact that Office has been, and will always be, a shortcut-based suite while Pages is inconsistent.

     

    Numbers/Excel - Numbers is really better for basic graphic, non-financial business reports, and personal home finances. In these categories, Numbers is a much better program. If you ever plan on building models, or building complicated Visual Basic-based systems, Numbers comes off as being pretty much a joke to professional users. It's great for home, and even for school. Better than Excel, even. But not for heavy use.

     

    Keynote/Powerpoint - Until Office 2011, Keynote completely dominated Powerpoint. The most important backbone of Powerpoint is that it's for visual presentations, and Keynote presentations simply look and flow better than Powerpoint 2008-prior. Powerpoint 2011 caugh up considerably, and is close enough for most people, but Keynote is still better.

     

    So, long story short, the people telling you that iWork is better and cheaper probably never used the more advanced features of Office or have no need for them. In a business setting iWork tends to fall apart at the seams, except for Keynote.

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