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earthpigg
January 24th, 2010, 01:31 AM
at the age of 26. local community college. better late than never!

anyways, i don't have a windows or OS X install anywhere.

(i certainly don't plan on taking any computer-related courses at community, as they have no offerings that interest me. thats for later, hopefully at Berkeley if all goes well... and a quick scan of the Berkeley course offerings indicates to me that lacking windows wont be a problem while taking computer-related courses at the birthplace of BSD. :P)

so, how much difficulty am i going to face?

i know i will face some when doing collaborative projects - after spending a zillion dollars on MS Office, none of my soon-to-be-peers are going to like me telling them that the 'easiest' way for us to work together is either for them to use OO.o too or for both of us to use google docs...

or has OO.o progressed to the point that converting a document back and forth won't be an issue?

should i just suck it up, go buy windows, and install it in vBox?

i seek the experiences of others, so i can benefit from them. what'cha got?

nmaster
January 24th, 2010, 01:42 AM
i've never had problems using open office when others use MS Office.

btw, congrats on getting started on your path to higher education! i'm an undergrad at berkeley and the EECS department is fantastic! can't wait til your here :)

audiomick
January 24th, 2010, 01:44 AM
I say "stick to you guns". It doesn't cost others anything to install open office. Why should you have to shell out for something you don't want just to cater for someone elses wishes? OOo runs on all platforms.

jflaker
January 24th, 2010, 01:44 AM
Set your OpenOffice preferences to save as MS-Office and there shouldn't be an issue.

Dharmachakra
January 24th, 2010, 01:50 AM
I say "stick to you guns". It doesn't cost others anything to install open office. Why should you have to shell out for something you don't want just to cater for someone elses wishes? OOo runs on all platforms.

Why should others have to install OpenOffice because one member of their group doesn't have Microsoft Office?

That said, you probably won't have any format problems if dealing with simple text documents. Presentations, however, can be a headache.

zami
January 24th, 2010, 01:55 AM
Well, my husband just started going back to school at the age of 37. Better late than never indeed.

He's a Windows man, but he doesn't have much other MS software. No MSOffice or Works or Powerpoint. So far he's been able to do everything with OpenOffice, including editing a powerpoint presentation for a group project recently.

I wouldn't even bring it up.

I know with my husband, the school said he *has* to use MSOffice, *has* to use PowerPoint, *has* to use IE... it's just not so, he's been getting on just fine with Firefox and OpenOffice.

Congratulations on getting back to school. :)

-zami

earthpigg
January 24th, 2010, 01:56 AM
Why should others have to install OpenOffice because one member of their group doesn't have Microsoft Office?

yeah, thats part of the concern. 5 people choose one path for whatever reasons. 1 person, me, chooses a different path for whatever reasons.

who am i to say that my reasons are more important than their reasons?

bpalone
January 24th, 2010, 01:56 AM
Congrats on going to college. I haven't got any advice on getting along in the system computer wise. Just remember that the profs control your future at this particular time. If you need to go the Windoze route don't forget to use your student discounts. Another way to save, is find an old Windows 2000 disk and buy an older version of Office.

Just some thoughts for saving a nickel and once again congrats.

FuturePilot
January 24th, 2010, 01:59 AM
I was able to make it through college just fine with OO.o

zami
January 24th, 2010, 02:00 AM
I say "stick to you guns". It doesn't cost others anything to install open office. Why should you have to shell out for something you don't want just to cater for someone elses wishes? OOo runs on all platforms.
On a similar note, I'd suggest sticking to your guns, but doing it quietly.

I know with my husband, the school *requires* him to use MSOffice and IE. If he doesn't have them, he can buy them at a discount from the school bookstore. If he can't afford them with the student discount, he can apply for aid. See where this is going? If someone gets a bug up their but about it, he could be forced to buy MSOffice. (Which wouldn't be a HUGE deal but seriously, we have better things to do with our monies!)

But as it is he just uses his preffered apps with no one knowing the better.

-zami

HappinessNow
January 24th, 2010, 02:04 AM
at the age of 26. local community college. better late than never!

anyways, i don't have a windows or OS X install anywhere.

(i certainly don't plan on taking any computer-related courses at community, as they have no offerings that interest me. thats for later, hopefully at Berkeley if all goes well... and a quick scan of the Berkeley course offerings indicates to me that lacking windows wont be a problem while taking computer-related courses at the birthplace of BSD. :P)

so, how much difficulty am i going to face?

i know i will face some when doing collaborative projects - after spending a zillion dollars on MS Office, none of my soon-to-be-peers are going to like me telling them that the 'easiest' way for us to work together is either for them to use OO.o too or for both of us to use google docs...

or has OO.o progressed to the point that converting a document back and forth won't be an issue?

should i just suck it up, go buy windows, and install it in vBox?

i seek the experiences of others, so i can benefit from them. what'cha got?No worries just use the computer labs at school. :P

audiomick
January 24th, 2010, 02:06 AM
yeah, thats part of the concern. 5 people choose one path for whatever reasons. 1 person, me, chooses a different path for whatever reasons.

who am i to say that my reasons are more important than their reasons?

Who are they to say your reasons aren't important? Yeah, I know, majority rules.

My congratulations also on going to college. I wish you all the best.:D

cartman640
January 24th, 2010, 02:08 AM
I'd just stick with OO.o, it can read and write word docs and the inconsistency in formatting is going to be no worse than it is between different versions of office (windows to mac os looks completely different normally).

For true inter-os compatibility you could use LaTeX, but I'm sure the learning curve would probably put most people off.

As for future studies in the computer-related fields, I have recently completed my compute science degree, during the course of which Microsoft and windows were examples of how not to do things. All of the department machines ran either Fedora or Mac OSX, so I'd say you'd be fine there.

Good luck with college and have lots of fun :)

pwnst*r
January 24th, 2010, 02:15 AM
The chances of the "5" switching to Open Office are slim to none. On top of that, you expect them to learn a new GUI instead of you sucking up and paying for a student copy of Windows/Office? I know that the OO interface is dead simple, but a lot of people won't be in for that sort of change when they just want to all collaborate and get the best grade possible. Proprietary software or not.

In the end - it's what you get out of the classes, not how you 'stuck to your guns'.

pwnst*r
January 24th, 2010, 02:15 AM
For true inter-os compatibility you could use LaTeX, but I'm sure the learning curve would probably put most people off.



...

00ber n00b
January 24th, 2010, 02:18 AM
using that new education bill?

AllRadioisDead
January 24th, 2010, 02:41 AM
The chances of the "5" switching to Open Office are slim to none. On top of that, you expect them to learn a new GUI instead of you sucking up and paying for a student copy of Windows/Office? I know that the OO interface is dead simple, but a lot of people won't be in for that sort of change when they just want to all collaborate and get the best grade possible. Proprietary software or not.

In the end - it's what you get out of the classes, not how you 'stuck to your guns'.
+1
My thoughts exactly.

sinbadbuddha
January 24th, 2010, 02:51 AM
Using OOo you should be able to save to an MS Office format. If you don't want to, you could export to pdf or html and expect your friends to do the same, whatever (pdf is an open standard).

It is perfectly reasonable to choose OOo, IMHO, for a variety of reasons. It is also reasonably, though, to use MS Office, because (except regarding portability), it is simply better.Easier to use (whatever you start with), more functionality, nicer fonts (and greater variety), way better spellchecker.
Although OOo offers a better range of file formats and platforms, I will not refrain from saying that Micro$oft wins hands down here, which is why I think that while it is unfair for you to be expected to buy Microsoftware, isn't it also unfair to expect them to install your software, even if it won't cost them anything? That is why I recommend the above alternative to .odf files.

Zoot7
January 24th, 2010, 03:03 AM
The chances of the "5" switching to Open Office are slim to none. On top of that, you expect them to learn a new GUI instead of you sucking up and paying for a student copy of Windows/Office? I know that the OO interface is dead simple, but a lot of people won't be in for that sort of change when they just want to all collaborate and get the best grade possible. Proprietary software or not.

In the end - it's what you get out of the classes, not how you 'stuck to your guns'.
Agreed wholeheartedly. I'd say you'd be best to just invest in a Windows install it'll save you a whole lot of trouble in the end. Were it a few months earlier you could probably have cashed in on that Windows 7 student deal.

Anyway, in my case usage of anything other than Windows doesn't really fly given that many applications I require for my academics require Windows as a base. I can't exactly make excuses to my academic supervisor about the type of OS I choose to run on my own home machine.

jmszr
January 24th, 2010, 03:20 AM
earthpigg,

For your collaborative projects your group could just use Google Docs.

I made it through using OO.o and Google Docs mostly, and the school's computer labs for those other OSs, if there was no way around it.

Edit: D'oh, didn't spot the reference to Google Docs in your post.

Georgia boy
January 24th, 2010, 03:29 AM
Hi. I can remember when I was taking classes many years ago and I didn't have Microsoft Office. I had an old Packard Bell that had Lotus works on it. I got them to let me use the upgrade set of the old "Ami Pro". Yes it's a long gone dinosaur but was very useful in it's days. Instructors all told me that I had to use Microsoft Office but didn't say a word when I turned everything in using "Ami Pro". Now there's OpenOffice.org and to me it can accomplish very much. Go for it. Yes, I know "Ami Pro" is showing my age but what the heck. You get the meaning, "Whatever Works" right?

Tom

k64
January 24th, 2010, 03:36 AM
My first step towards college is public high school and it will begin in February for me (I'm a junior). I currently go to a private school. As such, it is private information and not to be discussed.

In case you're wondering about the school I'm going to attend in 1 week:

http://eths.svusd.org/

Edit: I already do go there for lunch on Fridays, and am starting classes in 1 week.

SaintDanBert
January 24th, 2010, 03:50 AM
You will have occasional troubles where something demands micro-$oft internet exploder and won't work with anything else. There will be other rare situations when you absolutely must have real-word or real-powerpoint or real-excel because of some macro or add-on or programming. Lastly, your major might demand specific software (like SPSS) that is only available on win-doze.

I have worked as computer science faculty and as college student using linux and open office since 1995. Worked extremely well except for the situations named above. In my experience, dual boot handled things quite well. I have not tried to virtualize a laptop or use Wine(tm) for the required applications.

Good luck,
~~~ 0;-Dan

earthpigg
January 24th, 2010, 03:51 AM
I currently go to a private school. As such, it is private information and not to be discussed.


so you're a scientologist? :lolflag: sorry, couldn't resist.

thanks for the support guys.

has anyone been converting complex documents back and forth between ooo and office 2007 on a regular basis lately?

Dharmachakra
January 24th, 2010, 04:21 AM
I currently go to a private school. As such, it is private information and not to be discussed.


I think you don't understand what a private school is.

00ber n00b
January 24th, 2010, 04:30 AM
My first step towards college is public high school and it will begin in February for me (I'm a junior). I currently go to a private school. As such, it is private information and not to be discussed.

In case you're wondering about the school I'm going to attend in 1 week:

http://eths.svusd.org/

Edit: I already do go there for lunch on Fridays, and am starting classes in 1 week.

LOL wut?

Private school? Means...you pay more money.

k64
January 24th, 2010, 04:38 AM
LOL wut?

Private school? Means...you pay more money.

Actually, NPS. It is a cross between public and private, let's put it that way, In short, it was a district referral to a private school. District-paid 100%.

JDShu
January 24th, 2010, 04:49 AM
I went through college without ever using Microsoft Office... I didn't even think about it.

In any case, don't buy any software until you officially enroll. If you do end up needing to buy for whatever reason, its cheaper as a student.

Grifulkin
January 24th, 2010, 05:32 AM
I start my final semester as an undergrad Monday.

lykwydchykyn
January 24th, 2010, 05:44 AM
If it's just a question of handing in documents, I doubt you'll have a problem, especially as this is the local community college. My experiences in community college is that they just generically made these requirements, probably to avoid having someone hand in homework in PFSwrite format or something unreadable.

I usually just asked if I could hand in a PDF instead and they were fine with that. Even if I had been using MS Office, I'd rather hand in a PDF for consistency sake.

Now, my wife ran into a small problem using OpenOffice in that the teacher would make comments on her papers using the notes feature of Office and my wife couldn't read the comments in OpenOffice. That was with 2.x, I think OOo 3.x might be able to do notes. I just loaded up my old copy of Word 2k in Wine and that took care of the issue.

Megrimn
January 24th, 2010, 06:31 AM
That said, you probably won't have any format problems if dealing with simple text documents. Presentations, however, can be a headache.

I agree; I don't have the full version of office and I live off campus, so no access to PP at all. I did the presentation on my laptop, even in the power point viewer (that part is fully functional) with a .odp extension. The real trouble came when my teacher wanted a copy and she did not have OO.o installed, so there was no plugin for PP to use. It was a real pain converting the filetype, especially since trying to save it as a PP in open office made it crash every time.

Warpnow
January 24th, 2010, 07:14 AM
You greatly overestimate the expectations of your teachers.

If you show up to class half the time, and your papers are typed rather than hand-written on the back of a menu, you'll be top of the class.

I went for 2 years. Community college is its own experience, for sure. Group projects? Just take the lead, have eveyone send you THEIR files, then you format them and print the copy you hand in.

earthpigg
January 25th, 2010, 03:14 AM
using that new education bill?

yup, can't beat it outside a few EU nations.

Jesus_Valdez
January 25th, 2010, 03:24 AM
For most documents and presentation OOo should do just fine, but be prepare for facing problems with more "elaborate" papers.

Also let's face it, can't beat Office, so if You have the money maybe I recommend go with one of those cheap student licences of Windows and Office and having a Virtual Machine set-up "just in case".

Also, is my understanding that Office can open ODT files, just as OOo can work with DOC and DOCX.

phrostbyte
January 25th, 2010, 03:26 AM
There might be some electives that require Windows. If you are CS, Physics or Math major, very little difficulty. If you are business or some liberals arts major it might be yharder.

phrostbyte
January 25th, 2010, 03:30 AM
earthpigg,

For your collaborative projects your group could just use Google Docs.

I made it through using OO.o and Google Docs mostly, and the school's computer labs for those other OSs, if there was no way around it.

Edit: D'oh, didn't spot the reference to Google Docs in your post.

Yes in my school we shared notes on Google docs.