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WordPerfect9:
A component of Corel’s WordPerfect Office Suite2000
by Donna Gorrell

WordPerfect has been my choice of word processing programs for many years. My first experience with computers began when I clumsily typed various documents for my husband. My typing experience had been on an old typewriters — those with a bell that warned when you got close to the end of the line so you could throw the carriage back to the beginning of the next line. I was not at all familiar with electric typewriters and the computer keyboard was a foreign element. I learned to love that backspace key and marveled at how simple it was to "wipe out" an error and replace it with the correct character. I’d always been a fast typist, but a poor one due to the many errors I made.

I had been using WordPerfect8 but experienced a hard drive failure and had to completely re-do my entire system. I chose to install version 9.0 cleanly so that there would be nothing lurking in the registry from any previous version. I had no problems at all.

Since the format of WP has not changed since 6.0, I felt safe in importing all my existing documents into 9.0. I was eager to experiment and check out the latest features. Since I do not have a scroll wheel on my mouse, the first thing I did was to try out the scroll feature. Wheee—up, down, up, down. Then I learned that instead of making myself dizzy, I could fine tune that feature by moving my mouse very slowly. After that I kept my hands off the mouse and watched the page scroll at a very comfortable pace. There’s also a new addition to the scroll bar and by clicking on the icon you can scroll through you document by page, table, graphic, or other specific format. Handy if you have multiples of these elements.

The third new feature that impressed me is the ability to preview formatting changes. If you think the document might look better in Arial rather than Times Roman, click on the font list, choose the different font and WP displays the page as it will look if you apply these changes. Not just the font in the list, but the whole page will show the effect.

WP now supports Adobe’s portable document format (.pdf). With one click you can turn a document into a format that can be read by anyone who has Adobe’s Acrobat Reader (a free program, available on the Internet). This is also useful for adding pages on a web site in pdf format. Since we use WP to produce the Explorer, look for the .pdf version to appear shortly on our web site.

Even though I had downloaded and installed the service package, I still experienced "freeze ups" or "crashes" of the program. As with any major upgrade, there are bound to be glitches, but it makes me reluctant to tell you to run out and purchase this latest edition as an upgrade. If you are not now using WP, then by all means— run, do not walk, to the nearest software store and purchase this or any other version of WP. All things being equal in word processing software, the one feature that sets WP apart, and is worth its weight in gold, is Reveal Codes. Notepad is adequate if all you do is write an occasional letter but if you want to do any serious work— get WordPerfect.

Various editions of the WP Office2000 suites offer different configurations. All contain the basic word processor (WordPerfect9), spreadsheet (QuattroPro), presentation-drawing (Presentations), along with other enhancements, such as a PIM, a database, or voice recognition. Read the box to determine your needs and buy accordingly.

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This page was last updated on:
February 2003