Microsoft Office 2010

We continued today our little tour in Tech.Ed Berlin and stopped for a one and a half hour at the Office 2010 presentation.

Reed Shaffner, Product Manager at Microsoft, made a live demo of the new features of Microsoft Office 2010. We will try to present you our favorite ones and the ones that will best help you with your studies. The three main points, Efficiency, Collaboration and Web Apps, ended-up to the top of our list, we will focus on these three points in this blog, as well as few other cool things we found.

General overview:

First thing that we discovered is that the ribbon has been generalized in all Office Suite. Not only it brings more options instantly available, but the new ribbon provides also new interactive ways to make actions (ribbon change in function of what tool you are using). Use Search Commands from OfficeLab Project to quickly find the command you are looking for. The unpopular big round office button on the top left of Office 2007 has been replaced by Backstage. This new tab increases the efficiency of administrative stuff such as printing, sharing, saving etc. You can also access all the meta-data relative to your document in one click. It also contains a new compatibility checker, which checks that the persons with whom you are sharing data with are able to read the full document, and tells which parts are problematic if they cannot read the document.


There is a new sharing and collaborating feature that we can use with Office 2010. Professionals will use it with SharePoint, but we students can use it with Skydrive (just for you guys who don't know it, Skydrive is a free 25GB storage online where you can upload your files, make them private, share them or make them public). When you want to share your document you can just save it to your Skydrive, decide who has right to modify it and you are set. You will then be able to simultaneously edit the document with different people! By the way at the end of this week, with Skydrive, you'll be able to directly edit your document in your web navigator (Internet Explorer, Firefox and Safari) with Microsoft Office WebApp (you don't need to have Microsoft Office to be able to use it).




New In Outlook

The mails are now stored in a conversation way, which mean that all the replies goes to the same "message". This feature allows users to have more space to see other mails. You can also choose to ignore a conversation if it's uninteresting, then it will be erased and all the further replies automatically deleted without charging your Inbox. When you receive a meeting request you also now get a preview of your agenda in the same mail, which helps you to have a quick view on what you will have to do this day. When you send a meeting request you can preview the agenda of all attendees on the day to which you wanted to plan your activity. If you are using Outlook 2010 with Exchange, you are also able to use Voicemail. This feature allows you to receive your Inbox message to your email in a written way and also as an audio file.


New in Excel

With new Excel it is possible to make small preview of graphics in the Excel cases to see how the data are looking rapidly. It is also possible to make real time filtering on the pivot tables to access the data more quickly and to draw real time graphics only based on these data.


New in Word

In the new Word there is a little toolbox appearing when using the copy-paste function, which allows quick editing of items: you can choose if you want it to be as the original text, text merged with your document or text only. It's also now possible to make basic photo editing in Word! Reed showed us also how to remove the background of a picture and to add effect (Blur etc.) without leaving Word. On the multi-user experience side, you several people can edit a document at one time! A new feature was added to prevent several persons to edit same part of the text at the same time: if somebody is editing a paragraph of a text, it is blocked from editing from others. We also discovered that the upload to Skydrive and Sharepoints are now bandwidth-saving, because they just upload the changes to the file.


New in PowerPoint

We learned that a basic video editor is now available inside PowerPoint allowing user to make some editing as re-coloring or cut-off, and also to add some effects as reflection or frame. There is even a compression tool that resizes the videos to desired sizes (perfect for sharing a PowerPoint). There are some cool new 3D effects in the transitions of slides. And it's also possible to have multiple users working on the same sheet, using the same "block out" system that we described on the Word part (thought this time it is applied for each slide).


We really enjoyed the conference today and look forward to share with you further experiences!

That was Steven Meyer and Mikhail Chatillon, for Microsoft Switzerland, direct from Berlin

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