By stuartjross

Desk Day

It has been a hard desk day, a wee bit of cad but mostly book keeping stuff. I am going to have a moan about progress again.

There is always something about that comfort zone you enjoy with a particular PC program or app.which you are totally familiar with. The new PC has forced me to make the jump from my Lotus word processor to MS word. Lotus Wordpro comes on a Lotus suite CD and the most recent (and possibly last ever) version I have is dated 1997. Despite running on paraffin it could seamlessly mail merge from its very capable Lotus 123 spreadsheet sibling, embed or link to other documents on your drive or network and I just scratched the surface. It was an automatic presumption that you could insert tables with formulae, say for an invoice, which would auto recalculate.

Step forward over two decades to Microsoft's offering. I spent hours trying to get a table within an invoice page to update when new values were inserted. After more time Googling for the solution the simple answer is you can't do that with Word. Dig deep and there is an option to update as you go to print, but even the print preview shows the wrong answers. Apparently the best MS can offer is to highlight all the cells in question then push F9 and this forces a re-calculate. It gets worse if you need to insert rows as the spreadsheet logic you would expect of the formulae collapses and you have to manually debug them all.

I can't believe we have a world dominated by Microsoft Office and the word processor is worse than Lotus from 20 years ago. It is clumsy with unintuitive menus, incredibly slow and awkward with the very real potential to send a document with an arithmetic error.

If you are thinking ah, but MS have Excel; its good isn't it, this is simply a spreadsheet program they bought and re-badged. At the time Borland Quatro Pro was indeed competing with Lotus 123 so MS grabbed it.

Sign in or get an account to comment.