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I also intellectually would like it to succeed; I think the big reason that has stopped my adoption in the past is the pervasive availability of Microsoft Office in my life. When I decide to spend a week or two testing OpenOffice, I notice that it tries very hard to work like MS Office does, but doesn't do it nearly as well. If it was trying to innovate or introduce new features, ala Firefox, I think I would put up with small problems and bugs more readily. As is, I wouldn't use it unless "people" (IT departments, academic departments, ect) stopped giving me free legal copies of MS Office to use. Those people may be the right target audience for conversion; without data to back it up, I would bet that a majority of MS Office end-users don't actually pay for it.

So why are using a spreadsheet at all?I don't mean to offned, but it seems to me that people misuse spreadsheets all the time. Whenever they need an simple way to show info in rows and columns, they use a spreadsheet. Why not just insert a table in a word processor document, if the purpose is not to do some sort of calculation?Otherwise, if you are doing a calculation, and you still want to show something like '6/2 , place the 6 in one cell and the 2 in the adjacent cell and give them different captions.Stuff to do | Stuff done6 __________ 2Or you could make the type of data in the cell text' instead of a number, which is something most spreadsheets can do.Excellent luck.

Nato tŠ³oops killed in Afghanistan

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  • Tom Grant is a senior analyst at Forrester Research. You can e-mail him at tgrant@forrester.com, or reach him via Twitter at TomGrantForr. All opinions expressed here are my own, and not necessarily those of my employer, Forrester Research.

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