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Alternative Options

ThinkFree Office is a suite of applications offering Microsoft Office format compatibility for word processing, spreadsheet, and presentation creation. ThinkFree Office offers versions for Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux.

With any of the ThinkFree applications, the user interface is a lot like the Microsoft applications they mimic. This was intentional, in an effort to make traditional Microsoft users more comfortable and make the transition easier.

ThinkFree doesn't have macro capability, so don't expect to migrate documents that need this functionality. ThinkFree offers a web-based version of the product, allowing you to create the same documents using only a web browser.

If Microsoft Word compatibility isn't a requirement, a number of other options could meet your needs:

  • TextWrangler 2 is another free editor that has a number of unique features, including grep-style pattern-based search and replace, and a plug-in architecture with the ability to do things such as sort lines and remove duplicates. TextWrangler also includes an extensive scripting tool similar to the Word for Mac macro feature. This capability would appeal more to programmer types but can be used to automate repetitive tasks.
  • RagTime Solo is a document-publishing tool similar in functionality to iWork Pages. It includes a number of features common to other document-publishing applications.
  • SubEthaEdit 2.2 is a unique collaborative-editing tool, combining the interactive conversations of instant messaging with document creation. The only hitch is that everyone participating in the document-creation process will need a Mac.
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