I doubt whether the Frame folks ever realistically thought they were
in a war with Microsoft for the "two-page office memo and student
essay" market. (Unless InDesign was also at war with MS Publisher for
the "make your own greeting card and church newsletter" market.)
Frame is a niche product that's optimized for people (such as TWs) who
are motivated to learn how to use it properly and reap the benefits.
Word *can* be used very effectively by motivated pros, but it's
*optimized* for people who just want to walk up and start typing,
possibly after they've had a couple of drinks.
An obvious solution would be a simpler, cheaper version that has 95%
of the features that 95% of users actually use. That was Microsoft
Works, and people didn't want it. In my experience office workers
didn't want to be 'deskilled' Works users, so they demanded to be
unskilled Word users.
There are a couple of modern approaches to this problem. Office 365
has a slightly pared back Web interface. It's Word looks just like
Word, with some missing options that most people probably wouldn't
notice. And the integration with email and cloud storage looks nice
(so far; I've only been using it for a week). In theory only people
who need to use full Word have to open the full, traditional Word
For law firms and other large corporates the sanest solution by far is
something like Suzy Davis's template automation package. It's still
familiar to Word users, but it hides or puts cushions in front of the
sharp edges that commonly cause grief to the unwary.
----- Original Message -----
Sent:Thu, 27 Jul 2017 13:12:04 +1000
Subject:atw: Re: Word processing is dead
"If Framemaker was the answer, it would already have won the word
wars. It hasn't so clearly there is another problem that Adobe is
Like, pricing, perhaps.
On 27 July 2017 at 11:51, Christine Kent wrote:
I think this is a fairly nonsensical article. Sure, Word is too hard
most people to extract a decent document from. That is a given. But
it is a
far stretch to jump to the conclusion that word processing per se is
Of course it isn't.
While lawyers continue to want numbered clauses and contract
require all manner of numbered layouts, the only way to get them cost
effectively is through word processing. Word processing simply has to
to do them better. A point will come were some other cost effective
accessible package will knock Word off it's pedestal, not because it
simple documents better - there have been lots of shots at that, that
failed commercially - but because it does complex documents better.
If Framemaker was the answer, it would already have won the word
wars. It hasn't so clearly there is another problem that Adobe is not
addressing with Framemaker. So either Word has to fix the nonsense or
another package - that is better presented and marketed than
Until then, we stay in work fixing corrupted documents. And surely
that is a
good thing - for us!
Bye the way, I am available to fix up bad documents if anyone can't
for themselves. I am technically retired but I take itty bitty work
up the coffers.
From: austechwriter-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx 
[mailto:austechwriter-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx ] On Behalf Of Daryl
Sent: Thursday, 27 July 2017 10:10 AM
To: austechwriter@xxxxxxxxxxxxx 
Subject: atw: Word processing is dead
Woody's Watch has just alerted me to an interesting article by Peter
the Australian Financial Review, 24 July.
Documents are being created by people with inadequate skills. Perhaps
at some point received a Word doc that was set up as US letter size,
margins. I once received a contract to sign that had broken
cross-references, and I don't need to explain how that happened. Moon
that when "law firms are starting to rely on manually typed numbers
references, word processing is dead".
Some may remember Peter Moon's name. He had an article on much the
subject in the AFR on 21 October 2008, which was reprinted (with
in the ASTC newsletter.