Office on Mac – without M$

date of original post on Blogger: May 27, 2008 – updated here Oct 10, 2009

OpenOffice has been for long time a free alternative to MS Office.
Until recently on the Mac it needed to install X11 – which was a bit annoying. This is why the NeoOffice project started: It is was OpenOffice independent branch dedicated to the Mac and based on Aqua. It also opened the new MS formats (e.g. ppx) – before OpenOffice did! It also has an interface to Databases (can access a database through JDBC).

Then it came OpenOffice Aqua – but still NeoOffice seems to have a small edge over it.

NoMu is a nice add on that installs a menu in the finder for launching NeoOffice in a different mode (e.g. as presentation or spreadsheet tool).

Alternatively, you can launch it from the shell as
/Applications/NeoOffice.app/Contents/MacOS/soffice.bin file.doc
/Applications/NeoOffice.app/Contents/MacOS/soffice.bin -impress file.ppt
/Applications/NeoOffice.app/Contents/MacOS/soffice.bin -calc file.xls

NeoOffice is scriptable (in several languages: Basic, Java, Javascript, Python). I found it difficult to find documentation – it took me a lot of frustrating googling hours – until I realized that OpenOffice and StarOffice documentation apply also to NeoOffice – maybe with some differences.
Here are some resources:

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Posted in Apps

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