Getting a Divorce
I wrote my first “book” on WordPerfect, back when WP was a blue screen and you had to memorize the keystrokes to do things like change margins or print (shift-F7). I felt hardcore then, but now — well.
I wrote my dissertation and two books on WP and I have to say — What the hell was I thinking? Okay, seriously. If you convert files, it adds headers where none previously existed, for example. No one else uses WP, so I had to send files in other formats to people on my dissertation committee. When they sent back comments, and I integrated the changes, I found that my new version had margins that varied from one inch to four or five inches. Four or five inches! When you turn in a dissertation, people actually go over it with a ruler to make sure the margins are right. So fixing that was a nightmare.
Tables, which I use a lot of in creating lesson plans, were a snap. Graphics are a bit harder to manage. Although it’s all menu driven now, the menus still aren’t exactly intuitive. And, more to the point, no one uses it. Ever. It’s like I’m writing in Esperanto, sed si skribus Esperante, alio potas ligi gxin! (Yes, yes, I know, my Esperanto sucks). It also lacks some functions that would be kind of handy, like usable spreadsheets.
So I’m getting a divorce from WordPerfect, despite our long and fruitful relationship, and I’m trying out OpenOffice. I’ll keep you posted on how it goes. I’ll probably finish my second book, when and if it’s accepted, on WP, but my third book will be written on OO.
(I just realized, this is the sort of thing normal people write in their blogs! I’m sincerely hoping this will not become a trend.)