Beta Test: A Look at Microsoft Office 2010

Will notable improvements in Microsoft’s Office 2010 office suite tempt you to lay out your hard-earned cash for the upgrade? takes a look at the beta version to see what might, and what might not, be worth your money.

Speed and simplicity are the name of the game in the latest suite of tools from Microsoft, the beta version of Microsoft Office 2010. Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Outlook all have seen improvements, while some less-recognized components like OneNote have risen to the fore.

The most recognized feature of Office 2010 is the Ribbon navigation tool. Office 2007 users have likely become accustomed to this series of tabbed menus, and so their continuing presence shouldn’t be jarring. For those just making the leap into the Ribbon interface (i.e. users of Office prior to Office 2007), the tabs may take some getting used to, as users reorient themselves to the new locations of commands. One bright note on the Ribbon: The File menu is back in Word, for those who had missed its logic and ease of use in Office 2007.

Beyond this, few of the basics have changed within Word, that road-tested staple of the Office suite. What tweaks have been made are geared toward making existing tasks smoother and easier.

Ever perform a cut and paste only to reverse the operation a moment later due to a formatting discrepancy or because of a chart or object taken from a Web site that failed to come in properly formatted? Word 2010 delivers new tools meant to help users pre-format content and get a preview of the final product before hitting Paste.

Read the complete article: Office 2010 Beta: Serving Up Speed and Simplicity

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