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Microsoft is making significant changes to the next version of its Office software, bringing a new file format and new user interface to users who have not seen such dramatic changes in 10 years. Although the changes, aimed at worker connectivity and collaboration, may be beneficial, there is still some trepidation over whether the suite provides the ability to read and transfer documents and files from different versions of Office.
---I am here to speak on behalf of the nonprofit organizations everywhere who operate their I.T. departments on a shoestring budget.
---I am the I.T. Director for a medium-sized nonprofit with five sites and about 40 computers. I am THE only I.T. staff member as well (plus I am the webmaster). I mention this because there is NO WAY I can keep up with the latest operating systems and office suites. As it is, it took me the better part of a year to get every computer on one platform, Windows 2000 SP4, and all using Office 2000.
---Compatibility is a huge issue for us. In my opinion, Microsoft should make their current versions always compatible with the last two.
I am fully aware that as a nonprofit, I get discounts. That is not the issue - my issue is that there is simply not enough (if ANY) staff on most nonprofit I.T. payrolls to keep up.
---This really raised my hackles:
"He [Kay] maintains that as soon as users are unable to read documents coming in a new format, they will upgrade without hesitation.
People care more about compatibility than anything else, including features and price," he said."
---I have some choice words for Kay, but I cannot ethically print them here. All I can say is, "Okay, YOU pay for I.T. professionals to come here and do these upgrades and follow through with all the training!!!"
---We aren't all multimillion dollar corporations. Don't forget the little guy out there in the nonprofit world struggling to make the world a better place via their older equipment and outdated software.