Free Microsoft Office Alternative Open Office 2.4 Released

open_officeWhen I built a new Dell PC online a few months ago, I was faced with the challenge most of us face: what could I afford to include and what did I need to sacrifice.

In the end, much to my technically-challenged wife’s chagrin, I opted to pass on Microsoft Office. Heck, why should I pay to type when I can increase memory and go wireless for the same cash?

After reading some positive reviews, I opted to download Open Office, the free software alternative to Microsoft Office. With extremely low expectations, and the fear of some memory-hogging virus plaguing my new machine, I am pleased to report that the product is stellar. We haven’t missed a beat.

Open Office 2.4 was just released, with Writer (the MS Word equivalent) improving on already impressive printing, shortcut and PDF-handling features. Mac OS X users also get the addition of a native Quicktime player and spell-checker.

Regardless of where in the world you reside, or what language you speak, Open Office has you covered.

Calc, OpenOffice.org’s spreadsheet application, features streamlined data entry and a ‘smart move and copy’ function.

Users of Draw, Chart and Base will all notice enhancements on this eleventh release of the freeware.

The OpenOffice.org Community promises another major release during the autumn season.

If you’re in the market for a new computer and are very familiar with MS Office, I’m telling you, you can pass. If my wife can make the transition, you can to.

Download Open Office 2.4 here.