User-centered design tools

Posted on miércoles, marzo 31, 2010 by Pedro Wave

Today is the Document Freedom Day so it is entirely appropriate to speak of the tools with which users usually generate documents.

The most used office tools worldwide is Office, with a half dozen commercial suites, so that its user interface is the best known. When searching Office in Google there are 821 million references, making it most popular than sex sites!

The Office platform is not exclusive to Microsoft, even the most widespread, but there are versions of Open Office from SUN and Oracle, which are quite compatible in their formats.

Why not install Office on your home computer?

You can think that Microsoft Office package is expensive (Professional version for about $680), even in the students version (approximately $150), and it is!, But there are free 60 days trial versions, betas and even full applications that can be installed free license for home use and non-commercial purposes.

The best free versions are:
- Microsoft Office 2010 Beta valid for 7 months (until 10-30-2010).
- OpenOffice.org 3.2 with over 100 million downloads, free unlimited use.

With these two suites you can edit text documents, spreadsheets, presentations, web pages, graphics and database tables, among others, in a consistent way (the programs consistency help people learn and use applications better and faster) for the user and with some compatibility with older versions of the tools Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Access, etc.

I've just installed these two free versions to generate my documents because knowing using one makes it easy to use other, although since Office 2007 has changed the appearance, remain quite intuitive for the common user, mainly due to the investment of these large companies in the continuing development of its interfaces and its investment in usability test to suit the end user.

As a user, what platform do you like and know better, OpenOffice or Microsoft Office?

Why not try both and tell me!

Traducción al español aquí.

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