I should have said that RNESU needs to come a lot further, before I
attempt to deploy a solution like this one.  Some of my users are
dedicated to using MS Works; which has to be the worst office product in
the world.  No matter what I say they will not switch.  I happen to like
OpenOffice, it's better than Star Office.  It has lots of nice features
like a Math problem writer; this is probably one of its best features.
For mail merging you can use it to connect to an LDAP server.

I'm not an expert on this subject, but the strikes that I have against
it are: 1.  Professional Development 2.  RNESU relays heavily on MS
Access and MS Works databases, OpenOffice doesn't support access or ms
works databases. 3.  Most companies use MS Office; if students already
are familiar with this MS product than they should be very productive.
4.  Most of the world has MS Office or MS Works at home, if deployed it
would cause a large amount of confusion at first.  Everyone would have
to be well informed on how to SAVE AS.  I think in the end it will make
the students understand technology a little better. 6.  Lacking Speech
Recognition 7.  Lacking manageability; I need those .adm files 8.  Time

I'm more concerned about the staff; they are the users that are not able
to spend the time to learn new tricks.

If you are not currently stuck using a product, I would consider
OpenOffice in some ways its superior to Office XP or Apple Works.  They
also built a Mac ported version, the one for 10.2 works better.

My response probably won't help any, because we might be in different
situations.  I understand that you use FileMake Pro and are not as
dependent on MS Access.

GIMP on the other hand; RNESU has not adopted any graphic editing
software.  Free is better or buy a few licenses for the labs so that
they can create .gif files.


-----Original Message-----
From: School Information Technology Discussion
[mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Gregg Martin
Sent: Saturday, November 02, 2002 6:44 AM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: OpenSource Software

[log in to unmask] writes:
>GIMP is a great program.  It's awesome that it's being ported to
>windows!  OpenOffice however still has a way to go.


I am interested in knowing more about your opinion regarding OpenOffice.
One of the network admins here recently suggested migrating his entire
school from Microsoft to OpenOffice.  You say it still has a way to go.
I've never used it.  Can you summarize the problems, as you see them,
adopting it?

Thanks very much...


Gregg Martin
Technology Director
Chittenden South Supervisory Union
5420 Shelburne Rd.  Suite 300
Shelburne, Vermont  05482
802.383.1234 x229 (v)
802.383.1242 (f)
[log in to unmask]