Monday, August 06, 2007

The joy of software upgrades

Information Technology is currently in the process of upgrading computers from MS Office 2003 to MS Office 2007. Some of the library has the upgrade, but my floor and the resource center have not yet been blessed. I decided to bide my time and wait before requesting the upgrade for my work computer, it is not that big an issue for me. Well, it wasn't until an email arrived stating all of the rest of the library had the upgrade. That means we will be inundated with questions beginning August 27th and I need to know what I'm doing.

The course I teach as adjunct for the college of education is in WebCT and uses Word, PowerPoint, and Publisher in different assignments, so instructions for 2003 and 2007 need to be prepared asap. I emailed a help request on Friday afternoon and a lovely technician arrived after lunch today to install my upgrade. Alas, my computer was being it's usual hateful self and she was a bit dismayed with the time it was taking to load (welcome to my world). I told her to go ahead and take it back to I.T. with her with the understanding I needed it back tomorrow. While I am now computer-less, except for resource center PCs, it is worth the inconvenience to be able to use 2007 on my own laptop tomorrow. With luck, they will be able to figure out why my laptop refuses to connect to the wireless network ...

I finished the Word 2007 instructions on Thursday last week and noticed that while it does a lot of the same things, 07 is a very graphic based interface. Oddly enough, it really resembles previous Mac versions. The biggest issue is saving. Students are going to do what they always do (and rightly so) and just "save." However, the new version saves to a different file extension and it is not compatible with older versions of Word. Joy.

If they take time and use the save as option in word that says "Word 97 - 2003 document" all will be well. I do not forsee that happening. I do see the same issues we had a few years ago with Microsoft Works (.wks) and Microsoft Word (.doc). I am starting early with announcements and handouts, but forsee fun for six weeks or so. Time will tell.

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