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Mac users find glitches with Keynote

Apple's Keynote software, created to allow Steve Jobs to make it through speeches without a hitch, is garnering complaints from customers that it is anything but bug-free.

    Apple Computer created its new Keynote software to let its boss, Steve Jobs, make it through speeches without a hitch. But now that the company has released the presentation program to the public, early customers say it is anything but bug-free.

    There are complaints of a host of problems, the most severe of which being that the software is prone to crashes that can take down an entire operating system--something intended to be a rare occurrence in Mac OS X.

    The Keynote discussion forum on Apple's Web site is filled with reports of troubles, including some from people who say the program is the first they have used that can bring Apple's Mac OS X operating system to its knees.

    "I've never had any OS 10 app crash the whole system before," reads a posting from "Yikesboy."

    The crashing problem appears to crop up most frequently on older laptops, particularly those without sophisticated graphics accelerators.

    "Keynote crashes every time I try to run a presentation on my PowerBook G4 500MHz," wrote a user by the name of "Don Hume." "I know I only have the minimum (video memory) required...but the presentations I'm trying to run are quite simple (including the sample presentation)."

    Other people noted glitches in printing graphics that are supposed to be translucent or complained that when Keynote presentations are saved as Adobe PDF documents, the resulting files are extremely large.

    An Apple representative declined to comment on the problems.

    Steve Jobs debuted the $99 software at this month's Macworld Expo, with Apple giving away copies of the software to all who attended his keynote speech. Jobs billed Keynote as "the presentation application you need when your presentation really counts."

    The software competes with Microsoft's PowerPoint and is designed to share files with the popular Office application. Apple touts it as ideal for graphically intensive presentations, highlighting its charting ability as well as its preset themes and transitions. These allow a presentation to look as if it were scrawled with a crayon, for example, or allow the slides to appear as if they are part of a cube.