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The politics of StarOffice

A reader writes that people will decide to go with either Microsoft Office or Sun's StarOffice based on economics and politics.


The politics of StarOffice

In response to the Sept. 20 column by Tony Siress, "Is StarOffice for everyone?":

I have used Microsoft Office and I've just got started on StarOffice 5.1 for OS/2.

The experience isn't the same. Microsoft does have a lot of experience, dating back to its hugely successful Microsoft Word for Macintosh, at making word processing a pleasant experience.

On the other hand, it doesn't have quite as direct a line to the customer as the OpenOffice has and, consequently, StarOffice has.

And the cost is going to be a factor in the Third World. Places like Indonesia and China are likely to resent any attempt by Microsoft to audit their software licenses. And Microsoft is also likely to be even more heavy-handed than it already has been in the United States (according to some reports online).

In the long run, it'll come down to economics and politics--only this time, I think good engineering practices are also going to play a part, and with luck, good engineering practices also will be transmitted to places that desperately need it.

Wesley Parish
St. Albans, Christchurch, New Zealand