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Recommend Word Processor for New Mac Accordance User


mbcvida
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I vote with Dr. Kang - Mellel is the best for proper display of Hebrew.

 

Additionally, the cost of the program is very reasonable. Their upgrade policy is quite fair - two years of updates and a very reasonable renewal fee after that.

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There is absolutely no reason not to download Open Office and give it a try.

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Agreed. For general use stuff, Open Office does a decent job, especially they're newest version.

 

However, it does butcher the Hebrew. Mellel is better with the Hebrew breathing marks and accentum. But, LaTeX does the best.

 

The only area in which all of these fail is church bulletins. I haven't found any free resources that do the job the right way. So, I saved up and bought Adobe Indesign for our church. It has saved *lots* of time. And the output is beautiful.

 

I suppose the old proverb is true: dē gustibus non ist disputandum. (one ought not argue over preferences)

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Note that OpenOffice.org (OOo) does not officially support PPC Macs. You can get OOo for PPCs if you know where to look (I can track down the url if someone needs it). NeoOffice, on the other hand, supports both PPC and Intel Macs, and has some made some other additions to the OpenOffice.org code.

 

A comparison between NeoOffice, MSWord, and OOo can be found here. It has been put together by NeoOffice volunteers, but an honest attempt was made to stay accurate and honest about features the other to apps have that NeoOffice does not, as well as the other way around.

 

I don't do much with Hebrew in NeoOffice, so I can't comment from personal experience in that regard. I'm one of the NeoOffice support volunteers, so no doubt my opinion is not completely impartial. I'm thrilled that OOo has come out with their own Mac native version, but I have felt no need to move from NeoOffice myself.

 

Lorinda

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Simply curious... is anyone using Pages at all? I have the new version, but haven't given it any kind of run through. I'd be interested in impressions from folks who have used it.

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Simply curious... is anyone using Pages at all? I have the new version, but haven't given it any kind of run through. I'd be interested in impressions from folks who have used it.

 

I actually have Pages 08 and after checking out some of the features of Pages 09 I would be very interested to know how well it works. I have a custom Pages 08 template that I have set up to my liking. I've set my paragraph and type styles, lists and scripture references. The way I work with it now is that I have the F keys as shortcuts to style the doc as I write and copy text in from other sources. I have all the panels and menubars hidden for less distraction. It appears this is easily done in the new Pages 09. I also use a program called Think that separates the front application from all the others, love it.

 

I think it really depends on what you're needing it for. At this point I simply need to prepare for teaching Sunday School and I basically include talking points, scriptures and any charts or pictures I might need to get a point across. I'm not writing a book or thesis. For my current needs Pages works just fine. I tried the LaTex and really wanted to like it but the learning curve wasn't worth it at this point. I would love to be able to use it with BBEdit because I'm very familiar with it. Possibly if I need to write a thesis or book I'll look back into it.

 

I have Office 2008 at work and Office 2004 at home never open them.

 

BTW, Another great program for collecting data is Yojimbo. I use it daily.

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Here is yet another new word processor I just discovered called Pagehand. Get this--it's native file format is PDF. It both reads and writes PDF files natively. It's not out yet for official release, but they do have a version 1 that can be downloaded.

 

http://www.tuaw.com/2009/06/18/wwdc-live-r...roce/#continued

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For those that have been on the fence. Mellel is on special today with Maczot for $24.50! Only 12 hours left though.

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Here's a new program that I have ran across a few years ago - Scrivener.

 

http://www.literatureandlatte.com/scrivener.html

 

It is a program designed for authors. It acts as a notebook for your text, files, websites, and anything else you can imagine. It allows you to write without worrying about formatting. The idea is that you write it up and then export it into your word processor. Once it is there you can then format it.

 

I have used it to write sermons, papers, an Advent devotional book (in progress); all with great success.

 

Since my Hebrew skills have all but ceased to exist and my Greek skills are about as rusty as a bicycle that has been sitting outside through a couple Wisconsin winters, I am not sure how it handles either language. it works great for those of us who don't use oringinal languages as much as we would like to.

 

There is a free trail & it only costs $39.95

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  • 2 weeks later...

For those of you who like the look of LaTeX but don't want to deal with the learning curve, you may consider LyX. It's essentially a frontend to LaTeX. It's a WYSIWYM (what you see is what you meant) processor. It's not what you see is what you get, but it gives you a great idea of what it will look like and it is much easier to use than LaTeX.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Howdy. I have quite an assortment of word processors.

 

Mellel - for handling Hebrew is the best and for academic writing. I like the power of the multiple independent note streams, auto-titling, and style sheets. Mellel 2.7 has been announced and will include text around objects. Never crashes.

 

Nisus Writer Pro - "feels like a word processor should. Solid as a rock. i use this for quick and easy writing.

 

OpenOffice 3.1 - one of two replacements for MS Office on my computer. Solid, but a little quirky at times. Mac version does not handle Hebrew (even from an alignment perspective, extending beyond borders); Windows and Linux versions handle Hebrew properly.

 

NeoOffice 3.0.1 - Solid, more Mac-like than OO.org 3.1 and it handles Hebrew better. I use both for exchanging files with MS Office users.

 

Papyrus 12.5 - both Windows and Mac versions available. Cross between word processor and page layout. I published a book 3 years ago using it, not one problem, solid as a rock, handled many graphics and rearrangements, auto numbering superb, etc. I even provided the final PDFs for the printer using the program. Handles Hebrew ... sort of ... meaning you can type Hebrew in individual words, but you have to place the words in reverse order. So I do not use Papyrus for that.

 

InDesign (whole Premier CS4 Suite) - just picked it up earlier this year because of my job.

 

RagTime 6.0 - bought it several years ago and found it capable page layout and word processor. Solid, but different.

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  • 5 months later...

I use NeoOffice. It handles hebrew much better than Openoffice. And NeoOffice is better integrated in Mac than OpenOffice. On the other hand there is Mellel, but not free of charge.

Edited by markusvonkaenel
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I get a lot of Windows Office documents from students. I got so tired of font incompatibilities between the Mac and Windows versions of Office that I'm using Office 2007 with VMWare Fusion. I have it running in Unity mode, so Word, PowerPoint, etc., open just like Mac apps. It even automatically converts all the Windows shortcuts to the Mac equivalent. You can hide Word, minimize it to the dock and quit with command-q, just like a regular Mac app. Of course, copying and pasting to and from these Windows apps is totally seamless.

 

I hate the idea of running Windows apps on my Mac, but I hate the frustration of having to deal with the differences between the Mac and Windows versions of Office even more.

 

Mark

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Mark, there shouldn't be font incompatibilities if students use standard fonts. What kind of crazy fonts are your students using ? :-)

 

In my syllabi, I simply have a statement that all papers must use either Times or Times New Roman at a 12 point size.

 

Now, having said that, I do have Word 2007 loaded into Parallels, but the only time this becomes an issue with my students is when I need to show them how to do basic things (which they ought to already know) such as setting margins, turning off extra spacing between paragraphs and the like.

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I'm beginning to think that there are issues with specific Unicode Hebrew fonts like SIL Ezra and SBL Hebrew, because the default OS X Hebrew fonts (Lucida? New Peninim MT) seem to render more accurately than these third-party fonts. More likely OS X doesn't know what to do with the information embedded in the font about how to render it.

 

That said, NeoOffice (as of the 2.0 alpha) does not have complete Hebrew support (it's not listed by default under the Language dropdown in Character formatting): there are some issues with vowels and cantillation in most fonts, though it appears that the OpenOffice project on which it is based has Hebrew and Arabic localizations. And right-to-left entry of consonants seems to work.

 

 

Two comments:

 

1) The only font I've been able to successfully export into other formats (html, rtf, etc) is Lucida Grande. The greek is fine. The hebrew font is pretty ugly. But, at least it stacks up the vowels where they are supposed to go.

 

2) As far as Mellel goes, yep, I agree, they are the only ones who can get the hebrew to look right. But, the difficulty is that when you would like to export that document to some other format it seemingly always puts it into a format which other programs don't recognize. For example, if you export to .rtf, when you open that up in open office or something else, it looks ugly (or to be specific, the hebrew looks ugly). For me, this defeats the point of using Mellel. If I want pretty documents with Hebrew, I can just use XeTeX. I bought Mellel so that I could export it to some format that can play well with others. If I want to share a document with my PC-using friends, there doesn't seem to be a good app out there for sharing documents which contain other languages.

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  • 1 month later...

Well, I will say that I very much like the interface. And it took unicode Hebrew better than Word does:

 

Screen shot 2010-01-28 at 11.12.17 PM.png

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Well, I will say that I very much like the interface. And it took unicode Hebrew better than Word does:

 

post-34-126473842611_thumb.png

 

Does the auto-footnote insertion from Acc work? I assume so since it does in OOo.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Microsoft Office 2011 for the Mac was announced today. Here is a screenshot of Word:

 

64902532-a407b17a458b1c8be52083655788ed78.4b74671a-full.png

 

A while back, it was promised that this version of Word would get right to left text so that Hebrew could be formatted correctly. I've got an email in to Rick Schaut, a lead programmer for Word, to confirm that this ability made the cut.

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Microsoft Office 2011 for the Mac was announced today. Here is a screenshot of Word:

 

post-34-12659203639_thumb.png

 

A while back, it was promised that this version of Word would get right to left text so that Hebrew could be formatted correctly. I've got an email in to Rick Schaut, a lead programmer for Word, to confirm that this ability made the cut.

 

I like what I see here

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