So to cut down on the number of requests, I thought I'd post a solution right here on my blog. No, I'm not giving out hacked copies of Office. It's a great program, and without a doubt, the combination of Word & Excel is the software suite that I've used more than any other software. By a factor of at least 10x. I think I first bought a copy in 1990 or 1991, running on a 286, when computer monitors were still monochrome and color printers were unheard of, and have upgraded constantly since then. I guess it helps that I'm a perpetual student, so I usually qualify for educational discounts on software.
Anyway, my solution for your quest for a versatile office suite is this: "Open Office."
Open Office is an open source software suite, promoted by Apache, often referred to as "OOo." OOo stands for "Open Office dot Org," not "Oracle's Open Office." Anyway, open source means that it is free. Free does not always mean lower quality. This software has been developed by a team of thousands of developers from around the world, working on it for over a decade, in order to provide a free office suite package to internet users everywhere. It has a significant (and growing) market share, and is available in over a hundred languages. And it is very compatible with most aspects of MicroSoft Office; at the very least, with everything that students would use it for.
OOo consists of a number of modules/programs, similar to MS Office. "Writer" is equivalent to MS Word. "Calc" is equivalent to Excel. "Impress" is equivalent to PowerPoint. "Base" is equivalent to Access. Well, they're not quite the same, but very similar. OOo handles all major file types, including export to PDF's, and has versions for Windows, Mac, and Linux.
Check it out: http://www.OpenOffice.org
Seriously, why perpetuate the distribution of pirated software when you can get the equivalent for free? If you like MicroSoft Office, buy a copy. If you want to save money, use Open Office. More than a hundred million users can't be wrong.
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