Just in case you’re still waiting for your copy of Microsoft Office 2008 for Mac (see 10 things), I can show you what to expect. Just two discs and two quick guides. I received the package today courtesy of Ian and Evelyn of Microsoft Singapore (thanks!).
My friends seem impressed with the Office 2008 packaging, which has a nice emboss over prismatic pearl card stock. I personally like how it’s smaller and thus more environmentally friendly than the Office 2004 packaging as compared here.
As you’ll see, the Special Media Edition basically comes with Microsoft Expression Media (formerly iView MediaPro). You can think of it as an alternative to media cataloguers like iPhoto, with its ability to import and search more than 100 different formats of photos, videos, music, and artwork.
Installation was simple enough, but I’m keeping Office 2004 just in case, especially for macro support which Microsoft stripped out in the 2008 edition. I have certain Excel spreadsheets which use macros to guide in form-filling (e.g. employee timesheets) which will no longer function in Excel 2008. I heard that Microsoft MacBU took user feedback about bloatware seriously and as a result, scaled the office suite down to make it speedier.
Michael Miller of PC Magazine seemed hear a different story…
When I pressed the Microsoft representatives as to why they took macro support out, I was told it would have taken two more years to rewrite VBA for the Intel environment. Given that Apple announced its plans to move to Intel two and a half years ago, and that Microsoft has a fair amount of experience with Visual Basic on Intel with Windows, I have to say I’m skeptical. Perhaps Microsoft just wants business users to run Windows.
Is the Mac still not taken as a serious business platform?
We’ll have to see how the power users workaround with this.