Brilliant demonstration of free software's inability to deal

Story: Upgrading Away From Office Suites Total Replies: 8
Author Content

Nov 17, 2012
8:07 AM EDT
with the real world.

Markdown? Pythong scripts?


Word processors are nice (and you CAN just edit text with them, apply the styles later -- or even attach stylesheets that do it for you) because you don't need to write any markup. The deal with word processors is not the underlying technical characteristics of the document itself, but the WYSIWIG interface and the ability to do regular mundane things like headers, footers, tables of authority, mailing lists, etc, etc.

Yes, they're big and bloated. Yes, the quality of Office sucks. Yes, we can certainly hope the world moves on to something better, but...

If you've got clients that you'd like to interest in free software solutions, you've got to sell them something they want, and they tend to want what they can understand.


Nov 17, 2012
8:21 AM EDT
Quoting:they tend to want what they can understand.

Funny, that.

Nov 17, 2012
10:20 AM EDT
Sorry but these are not alternatives, not for folks operating in the real world who just need to get things done.

Nov 17, 2012
11:52 AM EDT
html slides are an alternative for people who need to get work done. with the added bonus that i can easily publish them on the web.

greetings, eMBee

Nov 17, 2012
12:32 PM EDT
HTML slides are fine for people who are using an office suite to generate the HTML.

But then, why generate HTML slides when you can use a presentation program that will manage the whole deal for you?

Yet more support for the proposition that free software hasn't taken over the user space because free software types just plain don't understand it.

Nov 17, 2012
2:30 PM EDT
That had to be the craziest article I've read this year. Python instead of Excel?

Nov 17, 2012
3:08 PM EDT
This might qualify as one of the most insane articles I have ever read. This person obviously does not work in the corporate environment.

Nov 21, 2012
9:26 AM EDT
dinotrac: the problem i was alluding to was that i needed to get a decent looking presentation done quickly and i didn't have the time to figure out how to make it work with libreoffice (i tried and was stuck). i found a html/css/javascript based presentation tool that did what i needed, and now i am writing my presentations in pure html.

this solution may not be for everyone, but at least for a web-developer who is already familiar with that technology, this is preferable over wasting time learning a presentation tool that he has no interest in using otherwise.

steven: in general this is indeed a crazy suggestion, but as a programmer, i'd rather write a custom program to crunch the numbers, instead of using a spreadsheet. (i have created some fairly complex spreadsheet application in decades past, and it wasn't that hard. so this choice is really more a personal preference and also depends on the audience. not something i'd recommend for anyone else)

greetings, eMBee.

Nov 21, 2012
11:51 AM EDT
@mb --

Understood. I also do a lot of things that I would never suggest to laypeople.

Techies can do a lot of amazing things -- and that's good. We just need to remember that most people can't, and that's all right, too. They can do other wonderful things that we can't do.

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