ThinkFree Office Write: Alternative to MS Word?
- Excellent compatibilities in layout rendering (10 more, see all. ) Most popular and frequently used fonts in Office Software are Arial and Times New Roman which Linux does not provide. ThinkFree Office 3 on Linux provides these fonts Save as Adobe PDF ThinkFree Office 3 provides "Save as Adobe PDF" file format, which let you make your document in Adobe PDF file format with no need to buy PDF Writer program such as Adobe Acrobat. You can send this PDF file to your friends who have no Microsoft Office or any other Office file viewer on their system. Provides compatible fonts Most popular and frequently used fonts in Office Software are Arial and Times New Roman, which Linux does not provide. ThinkFree Office 3 on Linux provides these fonts (Arial, Times New Roman and Wingding ) to maintain wondrous compatibility to Microsoft Office on Windows system. Enhanced and friendly interface ThinkFree Office 3 was made to have compatibilities in user interface also. So that any user familiar with Microsoft Office can use ThinkFree Office 3 with comfort and without any confusing or difficulties. Support MSO XML file format (Word/Excel) ThinkFree Office 3 Write and Calc can open XML files created by Microsoft Word and Excel with identical document layout and contents.
If you need to work with MicroSoft Office documents, or make documents that are compatible with it, but don't need the entire functionality, there are several alternatives out there. These alternatives, as can be expected, do not offer all the features and functions available in MicroSoft Office, also they are much more affordable. The best known, and most popular such alternative, is OpenOffice.
However, OpenOffice does not run natively on OS X, being a X11 application. This is a issue for some people, mainly due to the fact that it doesn't look or behave at all like a Mac program, the keyboard short cuts are all PC like and simple operations like copy and paste can be a real problem. For those looking for a native solution, there are several choices among which ThinkFree Office.
ThinkFree Office contains three applications: Write, Calc and Show. ThinkFree Office Write is a word processor which mimics MicroSoft Word and offers much of the same functionality.
Like I mentioned earlier, ThinkFree Office Write is a native application, and looks and behaves like one. The only problem is that is a Java-based, and those users who have used Java based programs before are sure to wince and ask: “just how slow is it?”
Fortunately, ThinkFree Office Write is not slow and unresponsive, with two notable exceptions. When you open it up, it will crawl to a start, doing massive memory swapping. This, of course, goes away after the program is started proper. The second I came across is when you are selecting text. I work on a Dual 2.3 GHz G5, and it is unsightly for a text editor to hog every CPU cycle when you are doing nothing more than selecting text. The further your selection stretches, and the more paragraphs it encompasses, the worse the slowdown is. Withing the same paragraph, text selection functioned normally. Rest of the time, the program is responsive enough, although quite a bit of a resource hog.
How does it perform?
ThinkFree Office Write looks and feels like an older Mac version of Microsoft Word. It handles the Microsoft Word file format well, and there is no loss in either formating or content, as long as the document is not very complex.
Documents with the Track Changes option enabled don't open very well, and although the changes you make do show up when you open the document again in MS Word, they will not be highlighted, nor will they be editable through the Accept or Reject Changes option.
Other than the Track Changes problem, text only Word documents opened fine in the large majority of cases, however, documents with images and other drawing objects did not. 3D objects will import flat while line drawings are reduced to a small fraction of their original size. Tables and lists work fine though, and it seems that only the drawing items have serious compatibility issues.
Not 100% Compatible
The developer clearly states that ThinkFree Office Write only has about fifty to sixty percent of the features available in Microsoft Word, however, ThinkFree Office Write will always let you know what formating you may loose if you save Word documents that had unsupported formating in them.
ThinkFree Write reads and writes the Microsoft Word format by default, although the program can also save documents in RTF, HTML, text, and ThinkFree's proprietary format.
The application is native and looks and behaves like a Mac program. The fact that it looks like an older version of MicroSoft Word means that there is no adjusting to it, just open it up and work.
Although it is not 100% compatible, it does inform you of what you are losing by saving with it so you don't accidentally lose valuable information or formating.
The application is very slow at times, in doing things that should not, under any circumstances, be slow. Selecting text is something you do all the time while writing documents, and the only thing that would be worse is having it slow down while you type.
Compatibility is not what it could be and many features are still missing.
While ThinkFree Write has several advantages over OpenOffice, it also has quite a few disadvantages. Open Office is much, much more compatible and doesn't have any severe slowdowns. If you are looking for an alternative to Microsoft Word, be sure to try both before you decide on one.
Here are some screenshots, click to enlarge: