First Look: 2007 Microsoft Office system

I've decided to create a new book review category and tell you what I think of the new books.  As I'm given books to review by publishers, I'll write a review.

Title: First Look at 2007 Microsoft Office system. 

Author: Katherine Murray

Publisher: MS Press

Price: £9.89

What does it cover and who is it for?

A good intro to the new suite, focusing mainly on the client applications.  It covers some general introduction to what is different about the 2007 release, goes over the new user interface briefly and then drills into each application, showing a good range of new capabilities for each one.    Apps covered:

  • Word 2007
  • Excel 2007
  • PowerPoint 2007
  • Publisher 2007
  • OneNote 2007
  • Access 2007
  • Outlook 2007
  • Groove 2007

Good for anyone already pretty familiar with Office 2003 applications who just wants to take advantage of what is new in the 2007 release.

What's good about it

It's a simple structure to follow and so it is an easy book to dip in and out of.  Even though I am very familiar with most of the suite, I still came across little things that I haven't really used yet and it does a good job of highlighting the main advances in each app.  They also have little candid interviews with product managers (some of those from the "heros of IW" post) involved in the products which is a nice touch. 

Criticisms of the book

Although it does mention in places how an app can integrate with the rest of the Office system, this is primarily a book about the client applications and so for me misses the main point of what the 2007 release is fundamentally about - the whole environment.  No section on SharePoint Server 2007 or SharePoint Designer let alone the other servers for example.  The pictures are good throughout but they are in black and white, presumably to keep the cost down.  That said, there are a lot of pictures, summaries and sidebars to make it easy to read.  The other thing missing for me is integration between the applications covered.  For example, there is no mention of the terrific integration between Outlook and OneNote.


A handy little book for under ten quid to get you into the new 2007 applications and good companion if you are evaluating the beta.  Needs more emphasis on integration so in addition, make sure you read up on the server capabilities too, especially SharePoint 2007.

Comments (11)
  1. PatriotB says:

    Every time I see the phrasing "2007 Microsoft Office system", I cringe.  (Especially that lowercase "s"!)

    What’s funny is that if you click on the Amazon link, it calls the title "First Look at Microsoft Office 2007" — exactly how it should be!

  2. dstrange says:

    see my comments on the name here

    the reason for the small s in system is that Microsoft has no rights to the word – that’s why it is "Microsoft Office" not "Office" since we have no rights to that word either (as demonstrated by open office).  There are more words in 2007 Microsoft Office system but the whole point of this release is moving the vision up from just the desktop and looking at the interaction with the servers and between the apps.  So yes it is harder to say but it forces us to make that key point every time.  I bet I get to say this long name more often than most people too 🙂

  3. Andy Rhodes says:

    I tried to download the beta version but i could not get it, So i can`t give my views on it.

  4. I like the new 2007 microsoft office system

    first to reach the menu and toolbar is very simple

    second the file storage capacity is 1/10 of the old file system

  5. Some things change I have a lot of debates at the moment about how hard it will be for people and companies…

  6. This is definitely a great blog entry – about how organisations and people manage change. Some things

  7. Dale says:

    I really do think it’s a step in the right direction – although i’m not to sure if it’s corporate if you know what i mean!

  8. Some things change I have a lot of debates at the moment about how hard it will be for people and companies

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