Don't be a software pirate this holiday season. Get yourself OpenOffice.org and save yourself $400. In addition to not breaking the law, it is way better than the Microsoft Office suite.
Santa delivered a new computer for the holidays, and the first thing the new owner does is ask that computer geek friend of theirs for some software. The software that I am personally asked for the most is Microsoft Office. I do not support the pirated software scene. Pirating software is wrong m'kay. However, I think charging four hundred bucks for a home user license of an office suite (MS Office is currently $399) is highway robbery. I would rather spend that $400 on maxing out my ram, or maybe just purchase a huge gaming monitor.
Get OpenOffice.org to save yourself cash money, and not break the law.
Cost: FREE | Download from: www.OpenOffice.org
OpenOffice.org is a full featured office suite that can be downloaded for Windows, Mac, and Linux based operating systems. I have been using OpenOffice.org for years now and like it way more than the expensive MS Office suite. As a new user of OpenOffice.org you will not face any huge learning curves, if you are familiar with any other office suite. OpenOffice.org has word processing (compatible with Word), spreadsheets (compatible with Excel), presentations (compatible with PowerPoint), drawing, and a database.
In fact, with Word, Excel, and PowerPoint, OpenOffice.org is probably 99% compatible. You can set it up so that it saves in MS Office native file formats by default. In addition PDF creation is native to OpenOffice.org.
For those MS Access users out there, it is possible to connect to an Access database, but the forms and reports from Access will need to be recreated.
When I tell people about OpenOffice.org, they sometimes ask me why it is free. A great explanation of why it is free awaits you at the OpenOffice.org website.
Google Docs is a basic, no download, online word processor.
Cost: Free |Use Online Now: http://docs.google.com
Although not a full featured office suite it does provide a way for you to share some basic documents with other Gmail users, and access your word documents from anywhere an Internet connection is available. No downloads are required and it runs in your browser.