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OOoSwitch: 501 Things You Wanted to Know About Switching to Open Office.org
Table of Contents


Detailed Table of Contents (PDF) here
Complete Index (PDF) here

Chapter 1 - What is OpenOffice.org?

If youíre reading this book, you have probably already tried OpenOffice.org. However, you may be asking what this product is and where it came from? This chapter answers that and lays out some terminology used throughout the book.

Chapter 2 - Installation and Configuration

So you want to give OpenOffice.org a try. Now what? How do you get your hands on it? How do you install it? What do you have once you finish the installation?

Chapter 3 - OpenOffice.org File Storage

How does OpenOffice.org store files? Can it read files created in Microsoft Office and WordPerfect? Can I exchange files created by OpenOffice.org with people using other Office suites?

Chapter 4 - The OpenOffice.org Interface

While the biggest concern in changing office suites may be file compatibility, the most difficult part of the process is unlearning old habits and learning how the new suite works. Fortunately, in OpenOffice.org, the applications have a lot in common, so once you start learning, much of what you learn applies to all of them.

Chapter 5 - Making Life Easier with Templates and Styles

For most users, uniformity within and across documents is important. OpenOffice.org supports this need with styles that define a group of formatting characteristics and templates that combine styles with boilerplate text to form the basis for new documents.

Chapter 6 - Creating Simple Documents

Most of the documents you need to write arenít complicated, but do require some formatting and other features. This chapter looks at straightforward document creation with Writer.

Chapter 7 - Dressing Up Documents

Once you get basic documents down, you will probably want to use some more complex features of Writer. This chapter shows you how to add page numbers, tables, and graphics to your text documents, plus how to perform a mail merge and more.

Chapter 8 - Creating Simple Spreadsheets

Spreadsheet software was the breakthrough application for personal computers, the one that led to their widespread acceptance in the business world. OpenOffice.orgís spreadsheet application, Calc, provides the features youíd expect: the ability to enter numbers and formulas, have calculations update as the numbers change, format the results for attractive reporting, and more.

Chapter 9 - Database Manipulation with Calc

Calc has the ability to treat its data like a database, reading data from disparate sources and performing various operations. This chapter looks at Calcís database functionality.

Chapter 10 - Working with Graphs and Charts

Most people understand information better when presented as a graph or chart than when they look at the raw data. Calc has the ability to graph data in a variety of ways and offers a wizard-type interface to guide you.

Chapter 11 - Creating Simple Presentations

Presentations are a very different sort of thing compared to documents or spreadsheets, but learning to create simple presentations isnít hard. This chapter examines the basics of Impress.

Chapter 12 - Presentations with Pizzazz

Once you have a simple slide show working, you will likely want to add graphics and transition effects. In addition, Impress offers techniques that make it easy to create uniform presentations and to show only a subset of the slides in a presentation.

Chapter 13 - Creating Web Pages

The growth of the Web canít be exaggerated, and many people who never heard of a web page a few years ago now have the responsibility of managing web sites. OpenOffice.org offers a tool for creating and editing web pages.

Chapter 14 - Creating Drawings

Diagrams using shapes, arrows, lines, and the like are useful for conveying information in a natural way. OpenOffice.orgís Draw application lets you create such diagrams, which you can incorporate into documents created with the other applications.

Chapter 15 - Building Formulas

Those working in technical fields often need to include formulas and equations in documents to demonstrate ideas, show proofs, and so on. OpenOffice.org's Math application makes it easy to construct equations and use them in other applications.

Chapter 16 - Using Master Documents to Consolidate

Some documents, like books, are large enough to make storing them as a single file unwieldy. OpenOffice.orgís master document feature lets you store such a document in multiple files yet still produce such features as a table of contents.

Chapter 17 - Managing Data with OpenOffice.org

While OpenOffice.org doesn't include a full-blown database application development tool like Microsoft's Access and Visual FoxPro, it has considerable power for working with data, including the ability to create databases.

Chapter 18 - Forms, Macros and Automation

Sometimes you need more than what the package natively provides. This chapter looks at three advanced capabilities, custom input forms, macros to speed up or simplify your work, and automation that allows you to use the OpenOffice.org applications from within other applications.

Appendix - Resources

While this book should give you the basics and more, sooner or later, youíre likely to want to do something with OpenOffice.org that isnít covered here. This appendix offers a list of places to go for more help.