hairylunch (hairylunch) wrote,

  • Music:

Word vs. PDF

It's always interesting to me when I have my blinder's exposed. I was at a meeting earlier this week, where someone mentioned to me that I should put some forms online in Word format, rather than PDF because some people can't open PDF. PDF is technically the more open format - Reader is a free download, and is available for multiple platforms (Windows, Mac, Linux, etc). While it's not a true, open format, the spec is public.

Word doc on the other hand is closed, with Microsoft not releasing the spec. In general, to open a Word file you have to have Word ($229 for the new user price) and it's only available for Windows and Mac. Granted, Microsoft does have a free Word Viewer, but I've never seen anyone use this.

I guess this is a good sign of how successful Microsoft has been in getting people so used to their software, that they think it's a superior format. Give schools the software at dirt cheap prices, get people to use it starting in kindergarten, and then that's all they know . . .

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