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Showing posts from December, 2004

Microsoft Office Alternative: Open Office

In recent weeks, I've heard a lot of complaints regarding the Microsoft Office productivity suite-not regarding features, but on cost. Office is an amazing set of products. I truly believe Excel and Outlook are great software. However, outfitting each computer at a small business with $400 worth of software starts to weigh on the finances.

I'm a big fan of capitalism and haven't yet come to terms with the economics of open source software (OSS) or freely available software. Software (and any media producer for that matter) firms should be able to charge a fair price for the tools they create. Microsoft is one of the great success stories of our time and Office is a large contributor to their current market position. That's capitalism!

This is easy to swallow when some large company is footing the bill. However, at home or in the small business, $400 seems a bit much. One friend astutely pointed out, "That's almost more than I paid for the damn computer!" Th…