That Microsoft Office is the most widely used desktop software today is not in doubt. MS Office is used by a broad audience ranging from corporations and schools to the government and home users. Microsoft has structured the different components of Office including Word, Excel and PowerPoint in order to help end users work more efficiently.
Microsoft Office 2010 is the latest version of Office in the market. Microsoft has stuck to the tradition of the five core desktop applications that form the Office suite: Excel, Word, Access, PowerPoint and Outlook. Each module has undergone various changes since Office was initially released in 1989.
MS Word is no longer just the simple word processor it once was as it now includes desktop publishing tools that make end users with advanced needs just as comfortable as end users with basic word processing requirements. Excel has continued to not only grow the number of pre-coded formulas available for users but has also simplified the manner in which formulas can be instated on a spreadsheet. To cater for growing end user data needs, Excel has grown from the approximately 65,000 rows in earlier additions of Excel to the over 2,000,000 today.
When it comes to slide presentations, PowerPoint firmly holds its own against the competition – and competition has grown in recent times coming from Open Office Impress and even Adobe’s Acrobat Reader. PowerPoint provides a wide range of inbuilt templates, backgrounds and colors to work with in order to give you catchy presentations suitable for different situations.
Since Microsoft Office is a desktop suite that finds application in a wide range of home and office use, the quality of the user interface has always been one of the things Microsoft has had to pay attention to. Older versions had a cluttered menu and difficult to locate commands.
With each new release of the Office suite, Microsoft has sought to make the end user’s experience more pleasant by having better organized menus and allowing users to easily find what they need. Menu options that perform almost similar tasks have been grouped together thus applying ergonomics principles to the entire design.
Even the most savvy software end user needs to be reminded ever so often of the things that the application can do. Microsoft Office takes cognizance of this and incorporates screen tips to make sure the end user is reaping the maximum benefit from the application. Pointing the mouse to a menu option briefly explains what the command does.
As the internet invades every facet of life, sharing information is a feature than any software looking to make an impact in today’s market must have. Organizations increasingly require staff to ensure information within and between departments. Setting up a meeting to discuss a certain matter can be cumbersome and time consuming.