I received numerous responses to my December/98 review of Star Office v5.0. Most
of the respondees said basically the same things; they had downloaded the free version,
found it to be quite useable, and applaud StarDivision for providing OS/2 users
with a powerful native suite.
I too applaud StarDivision for providing a ported version of a product obviously
developed for another operating system, and supplying it at no cost to the non-commercial
user. However, I really have a problem with purchasing the product at a special
discount, only to find that the product I purchased appears to be no more than the
freely available version... in fact, from all reports, it seems that the downloadable
version performs admirably well. The CDROM version I purchased does not. Nor does
it come with the printed documentation that one would expect when purchasing a commercial
application of this scope. Yes, I consider my copy to be the commercial version,
even though I would have been using it in a non-commercial environment had it been
less painful to work with.
Well, at least I showed my support to StarDivision (though they will never know,
as the online registration never did work) by shelling out the $99USD... did you?
In addition, there is a review of Star Office 5.0 free
dowload version in this edition of the VOICE Newsletter, from one of those people
who sent email to Peter. Following is the letter from Jocelyn Doire, co-author of
that article, to the Editor:
I read your review of StarOffice 5.0 with great interest because I just did one
for the newsletter of our user's group OPCUG.
I was quite surprise by how negative you were about the program. I have dowloaded
the "free" version, and was very impressed by the very large number of
features. Ok, it has the Microsoft look and feel, but given that other choice is
from Lotus, I would choose that package without hesitation.
I too had a problem with the online registration (seemed to be frozen, could
be because the server was too busy), but on my second attempt I got an email just
a couple of minutes later. The zip file is quite big, bug given what you get, it's
relatively small. Me too, I find it slow to start (P233, 64MB), but once started
it's not bad.
I think that StarDivision should be strongly encourage, because they are very
courageous at attacking face to face MS, because there is no real other alternative
for OS/2, and because they offer a package that is extremely complete and powerful.
If interested, I can send you my review (not yet published in our Newsletter).
Ottawa OS/2 UG
This was found in my employer's standards documentation...
Microsoft and IBM's Disk Operating System (DOS) are the standards for the workstation
operating system. The Microsoft Windows desktop environment is the standard for
graphical user interface (GUI) and multi-tasking with the DOS operating system.
Where more comprehensive multi-processing is required within the workstation, IBM's
OS/2 is the standard.
From the editor: Too bad other companies are more interested in fluff and frills
instead of results. Sounds like someone at some time knew what they were doing at
your current employer.
Further to my review of Mesa 2 2.2 in the December VOICE newsletter, I'd just
like to add that Mesa 2 evaluates this function correctly,
and Star Office 5's StarCalc doesn't.
StarCalc requires the commas to be semi-colons, and doesn't change them to its
requirement when importing from Excel (either 5.0c or 97b).
Just want to let you know a few things about the MOTE ai.
The ai is entirely offline in a file called "ai.mod", this is written
in 100% ansi pascal. The game players with limited programming experience can change
or even rewrite the ai to MOTE is just a little bit. The MOTE executable loads
in this file creates its own internal symbol table and then uses the interepreted
result as the games ai.
You can write new ai routines for exploration, diplomacy (w/in the base framework)
and even new base game rules.
You can have lots of fun with this, for sure!
Thanks and enjoy.
Programmer Master of the Empire OS/2
ScreenShots : http://www.physics.purdue.edu/~crh/MOTE
Ordering Page : https://secure.falcon-net.net/BMT/order1271.html
Editor Note: Also as an addendum to the review of MOTE, the following-
In the review of Master of the Empire, I noted as one of the few deficiencies that I would have liked to see an over-view map of the entire playing field. It turns out there should be an overview map on the left hand side of the playing screen. For some reason on my system (with an Elsa Winner/Office 2000, 8 Meg video card at 1240x1024 and 1600x1200) it was just black. Here is an image of the screen sent to me by Andrew Welty.