MS Word: Shit on both PC AND Mac

I’m typing a Word doc on my Mac iBook G4 right now, and I’ve typed many others, too, both on Mac and PC. Word is slow, excruciating shit on both systems.

Why is it that Word chugs, sputters, and hiccoughs–even on documents that are rather short and which include no photos, nothing heavy? I type in a letter and–voila!–1.5 seconds letter it appears on the screen. I am genuinely curious why it does this–both on Mac and PC.

PowerPoint does not do this, and its files can be many megabytes large. Excel doesn’t do this. Actually, nothing else in my software experience does this. Can anyone tell me the reason?

Of course, Word is all-round shit in every dimension. I despise the new toolbars in the Windows version. What’s that brushed aluminum with rivets look, anyway?! The old toolbars were fine. Can’t we get used to one of your changes, O MS, without your yanking it away from us once we do so?

And in the Mac version, you get these goofy-silly toolbars that, well, just look like crap.

Enough! I doubt that my statement that MS Word sucks pussy donkey shlong will cause much controversy, but I had the need to vent, and I have done so.

Thank you.

PS–Some software developer please save us from the monstrosity that is MS Word! Arrrrrgh!

Try this: Close out of Word, and search you hard drive for a file called It’s probably under some directory under c:\documents and settings. You’ll have to find the one you think Word is using. Rename the file to normal.old or something like that. Then restart Word. Any better?

I need to know more about it before I try it. Why does that help? What does that do?

BTW, I know that Open Office and other programs (I used to love WP) are better than Word. I should have been clearer. We really, really need a company to come along with a word processor that BLOWS MS Word out of the water and out of the market. We need to get rid of this viral, malware curse once and for all.

Sure, you can write docs in other wps and save them as Word files. But I don’t want to have to do that. I want it gone, gone! Out out damned spot!

Word can go crufty, too much tacked onto it haphazardly. But it’s still a lot more usable than OpenOffice, which still has that ratty “open source” feel to it: built for geeks, not for users. Mozilla’s done well moving beyond that lack of fit and finish, and I hope OO.o moves in a similar direction.

Either Slashdot or OSNews had a good article on this topic this past spring. I didn’t bookmark it, though. is the plain, blank, no custom settings template that Word creates when it’s first installed and uses as the default template for blank documents.

If doesn’t exist (either because you renamed or deleted it), Word will create another one with nothing but the default settings.

Yep, Word sucks all right. I’ve known people who say they’d use vi or the open-firmware prompt as their word processor before they’d use Word.

But you don’t have to make that drastic a decision :slight_smile:

Nor need you use OpenOffice, which closely mimics the look (ugh) and feel (yecch!) of Word although as least you get what you pay for.

PC: Use WordPerfect or Lotus WordPro. I’m a Mac person but I’ve used WordPro off and on since back when it was AmiPro and it’s quite nice. Meanwhile, lots of folks swear by WP and you may find you love it if you try it.

Mac: While waiting for Nisus to finish the slowest porting job in the world (getting beat by Quark is nothing to brag about!), have a go at AbiWord. It’s still a bit more MS-Wordlike than I really care for, but not as much as OpenOffice, and it’s nimble and responsive. Or you might find the WP in AppleWorks to be sufficient for your needs. It’s essentially MacWrite Pro salvaged and repurposed as part of a Works suite. Or use Nisus Writer under Classic – it’s almost so good you won’t mind booting up the Classic environment (and sooner or later there’ll be an OS X version).

Actually, since I got out of school, I hardly ever need the full features of a word processor any more. If I want to type something, 95% of the time I do it in Eudora or in BBEdit.

Yessir, WP was great. I used in the DOS environment and loved it. It was not GI, but I had all the commands memorized (and every command could be accessed through the keyboard). I could do mail merge and all that stuff.

Why? Because it was user-friendly and intuitive, even before the days of GI. Now I have a real challenge trying to set the tabs right on Word. I have never been able to construct a Word macro that works, either. It has been a real process devolution for me, and I don’t really find myself to blame.

I pretty much depend on Word, Mac or PC.

Not that I want to, mind you, but with some of the folks I have to deal with, I simply must. If the filename doesn’t say *.doc, I swear, some kind of black magic takes over the other person’s machine, corrupts the files I email them, then pulls down its pants and moons the recipient, just to add insult to injury. Of course, I’m the one who catches hell for it because I had the temerity to assume support for open standards would be helpful, and tried to use *.rtf’s or whatever. “Ahhhh! You made an *.rtf on a Mac! I can’t open it on my peecee running Office XP! Stupid Macs! Stupid *.rtf! Stupid you! Stupid stupid stupid! Waaahhhh! I want my *.doc! I just wanna click and have it open! Why do you make me think?? Noooooo!”

I’m exaggerating only a very, very, very little.

Heh. Ever since moving to Word, I’ve not needed to create a macro. I tried, a few times, but it was never worth the effort: anything I wanted to do with a macro, I could do better with styles or with autotexts or autocorrect or with templates. It’s fast; its features are well-integrated; it’s reliable.

I know Microsoft is the legion of evil and all, but Word is a freakin’ fantastic product. I love it.


I gotta agree with Lefty here. I like Word. Yeah, I have the occassional issue with it - like when it insists on making certain corrections to how I’m formatting my document, but those are momentary annoyances. It does whatever I want it to pretty easily. I mean, it’s just a word processing application - it’s not like it’s a database system or something.

Works fine on my computer.

If your computer can’t even type a single letter in Word without a delay, there’s something wrong with the computer. I’ve never seen Word do that.

Word is bloatware in the most eggregious sense. It is a very powerful and useful application, but it clearly suffers from its own success. Not long ago, a simple patch of under a few megabytes, I think, made all my Office for OSX apps launch about twice as quickly. TWICE? What the hell was going on before this tiny patch was added?

Word could be much leaner and meaner if it had any pressure to be so.

Heh, I figured it was only a matter of time before someone said this.

Have you ever typed a 30-page doc in Word? It will start to take time (now and then) before the letters appear on the page. It is extremely annoying.

I’ve seen it do it on several systems. You’re wrong.

Right now I have two word docs open on my computer. One is 266 pages long. The other is 313 pages long. I usually have a 3rd one open that’s close to 350 words long.

I’ve never had problems like what you’re describing, and 30 pages is nothing compared to what I usually work with.

So, I guess my new iBook is, and every other computer I’ve used Word on–Mac and PC–were, all brokey brokey?

I don’t buy that.

Maybe it doesn’t have anything to do with the hardware or software. Maybe it’s just user error.

Honestly, if Word was so craptastic, why have I been using it extensively, daily, for the past five years, and never have this problem? I never even had a problem when my laptop was so infested with bugs and spycrap that it took me a full day to clean it. I didn’t even had a problem when using the campus computer lab which is shamefully neglected.

Dunno. If you’re so computer savvy, answer the question yourself. I mean, how damn stupid is this? My pressing a letter key and not immediately seeing the letter appear on the screen can somehow be construed as “user error”?

Gimme a break.

I work for a school district, Aeschines, and we have many installations of Word on Macs (Word '98, 2001 and v.X), and the only time we have problems similar to what you’re describing is when there’s a technical issue unrelated to Word. Either software settings or hardware problems–not Word itself.

And I use Word X on my G4 iBook all of the time; in fact, if you ask me, the Mac version of Word is much, much better written than the PC version.

Also, I don’t wish to speak for pepperlandgirl, but by “user error” she probably meant that it’s possible you accidentally changed a setting or caused a problem that’s affecting Word–not that you’re doing something wrong by simply typing.

It’s possible Word could be autosaving at that moment, and your computer doesn’t have the memory to save and display the new typing at the same time.