I pointed out to him that he could simple download any one of the many free alternatives to Word that are available for download; most of which “save” and “open” in Word’s .doc format. It surprised me to learn that he was unaware that there are free alternatives to Word, of which, AbiWord is arguably one of the best of these light word processing applications.
AbiWord has been designed to integrate perfectly with the operating system it runs on, and there are many, including Windows, Linux, Mac OS X (PowerPC), ReactOS, and BeOS. This great application has been written to take advantage of the functionality provided by the system it runs on, such as image loading, or printing capabilities.
AbiWord is no slouch when it comes to being able to read and write all industry standard document types, like OpenOffice, Microsoft Word, WordPerfect, Rich Text Format, HTML web pages, and many more.
There’s no learning curve involved with AbiWord since it features a similar looking interface to Word, with it’s basic character formatting, paragraph alignment, spell checker, interactive rulers and tabs, styles, unlimited undo/redo, find and replace, and image support.
AbiWord has a very small resource footprint, which allows full functionality on systems that are not considered “State of the Art”. For those users with underpowered systems (by modern standards), this alternative light word processors should prove to be ideal.
I find AbiWord with its surprising amount of features and simple straightforward interface, to be the appropriate word processor I need running in the background while I’m on the Internet. Its small memory footprint, as opposed to memory hogging Microsoft Word, is ideal for most of my day to day work. In fact, portable AbiWord is my word processor of choice for my portable office on my USB key.
As you can see from the picture below, this article was written on AbiWord.
Advanced document layout options
Tables, bullets, lists, images, footnotes, endnotes and styles
Available in most common, and many not-so-common languages
Dictionaries for over 30 languages
Supports right-to-left, left-to-right, and mixed-mode text
The above feature allows support for languages like Hebrew and Arabic
Mail Merge capabilities
Download at: Download.com