Word 2008's Performance Not So Hot, Either
Word’s 2008 performance is, as I’ve found out, not as good as it first appeared. Even though it is a Universal Binary application and written for Intel Mac’s, I’ve seen problems with the application redrawing screen lines even in small documents. In a moderately sized document, I’ve seen OS X’s spinning beach ball as I waited for Word to catch up to me. I’ve seen complaints about Office 2008’s lackluster performance on some online forums where some users think Office 2004 performed better. (And considering that 2004 has still has support for Visual Basic, some computer pundits consider Office 2004 a better multi-platform application than Office 2008.) At other times, the application seems almost schizophrenic, opening old documents with snap and scrolling through them with ease, like one would expect. How does all this effect my recommendation for the new suite? Well, if you’re using Office 2004 and happy with it, then stay with it. If you feel you like Office 2008’s interface better and can live without Visual Basic support, then go for 2008. If you’re wondering why I didn’t list better compatibility with Office 2007’s native .docx format, then you haven’t heard that despite the promise that Office 2008 would be compatible with Office 2007, opening files in .docx generated by one application or the other is not as transparent as it is supposed to be. In fact, keeping a copy of the Office .docx converter or NeoOffice around just to do translations isn’t a bad idea, though I honestly haven’t seen that kind of a problem myself, yet.
That’s really pretty sad. When I consider that and the flail of an operating system known as Vista, I have to ask: “Has Microsoft lost it?”