So you know about OpenOffice.org, but have you heard of Go-oo? Go-oo is another office suite, designed to be faster and offer greater compatibility with Microsoft Office formats.
Go-oo not only supports Microsoft Office Excel and Word formats, it also provides support for documents created in Microsoft’s low-end suite, Works, plus WordPerfect Graphics and Lotus Word Pro. It will run on Windows, Linux and the Mac as well as a bunch of more esoteric platforms.
Create charts – flowcharts, organisational diagrams, network charts, sitemaps and more – using Lovely Charts. This browser-based app, built using Adobe Flex, is surprisingly simple to use yet remarkably flexible. With a free account, you can create any number of charts, but you can only save one to your account. When you’re done, export your chart to a JPG or PNG graphic for printing or publishing on your blog or website.
You can’t surf the Internet without encountering PDFs. Adobe’s been very successful in promoting its portable document format, but it’s been less successful in developing a PDF reader which makes its users happy. Adobe Reader can be sluggish and Adobe takes its own good time in addressing problems in the software.
Enter Foxit Reader. Sleeker, faster and more reliable than Adobe Reader, Foxit also gives you extras including an annotating tool and PDF-to-text conversion. It’s security conscious, too, and won’t connect to the Internet without your permission.
PDF to Word
Nitro Software provides a suite of free online tools for handling PDFs. Use PDF to Word to convert PDFs to Microsoft Word (.doc) or Rich Text Format (.rtf) so you can edit the content.
PDF to Word does an extraordinarily good job of conversion, preserving almost all the original formatting even in complex documents. Simply upload your PDF, select DOC or RTF conversion, and provide your email address for the resulting file. You’ll find links to Nitro’s other free tools, including a PDF Editor and PDF to Excel, on the same site.
This last one isn’t free, but a lot cheaper than buying Acrobat, and flexible. Leave it to Adobe to design a web-based app that’s as good looking as anything you’ll find offline. Acrobat.com houses your files online and provides a wordprocessor, a spreadsheet and a presentation program with which you can edit and create documents. It also lets you convert a handful of documents to PDF format and host web conferences with a couple of people; you’ll have to upgrade your free account if you want to eliminate these limits. The programs are easy to use and Adobe includes video tutorials to get you started.
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