[K12OSN] OT: any OpenOffice vs. MS Office studies/cases out RE: OT: any OpenOffice vs. MS Office studies/cases there?

robert pogson robert.pogson at gmail.com
Sun Feb 22 14:24:16 UTC 2009

Search the web for "                  Study on the:
    Economic impact of open source software
 on innovation and the competitiveness of the
Information and Communication Technologies
            (ICT) sector in the EU
see http://ec.europa.eu/enterprise/ict/policy/doc/2006-11-20-flossimpact.pdf

They have done their homework:

"        Another crucial perspective of this study is the focus on the use
of tools for office
automation. Many of the known studies refer mainly to operating systems and
often to
back office migration. In our study we mainly monitored largely distributed
software used on
clients as the office suites. Thus, we were able to really test the impact
of the new technology
on non-expert end-users. More than 6000 PCs were migrated to OpenOffice.org.
comparative use of two Microsoft Office and OpenOffice.org suites has been
performed after
a period of training to reach to same knowledge of the previous office


"        For the new open solution savings have been computed by predicting
on the initial
first year of ownership and historical data - as the five-year period of
ownership for FLOSS
software has not been reached yet. All organizations report significant
initial savings due to
the zero cost of licenses. In the long term the profit is not that obvious:
Extremadura, TO predict to gain with the new solution. SK predicted equal
costs for the new
and the old solution whereas PP reports of higher costs with the new open
solution in the long
terms (see the section on the Province of Pisa).
        We also investigated the productivity of the employees in using
Microsoft office and
OpenOffice.org. Office suites are widely used and are a good test bed and
representative for a
comparison on issues like effort and time spent in the daily routine of
work. Delays in the
task deliveries may have a bigger impact than costs on the organization's
management. Our
findings report no particular delays or lost of time in the daily work due
to the use of
        The results of this time-use analysis has show that no statistically
significant variation
in productivity measured in number of document processed per day and average
effort per
document has been found over a period of 32 weeks between two randomised
groups of
users, one to whom OpenOffice was introduced, and one that kept using
Microsoft Office.
This is perhaps surprising, since users were not previously familiar with
OpenOffice. Indeed,
the group of users was also asked whether as a result of the experimentation
they thought
they could do with OpenOffice the same amount of work they could do with
Office. As shown in Figure 46, under 10% of respondents thought they could
not, more than
20% thought they definitely could perform as well with OpenOffice, while
almost 60%
thought they could be as productive with OpenOffice (as confirmed by the
time-use analysis)
though with some problems. Given their previous lack of experience with
OpenOffice the
fact that problems were subjectively perceived is unsurprising, but the fact
that objectively
the productivity of users remained the same and did not reduce is important.


I have used that as good evidence that OOO is suitable for education. In
particular, students benefit by having a somewhat simpler office suite. It
makes learning/master faster and easier. In education, we often use .PDF for
distributing curriculum, reports and so on because it is cross-platform.
That OOO can produce PDF is one of its best selling points, IMHO. If the
boss tells you that Office needs to be used because users are "familiar",
show him the cursed ribbon of '2007 ... I do not know anyone who is familiar
with the older product that likes that change.

On Date: Fri, 20 Feb 2009 15:22:10 -0700
 "Alan Hodson" <aahodson at episd.org> wrote:

"Having just heard at the highest level in my district that Open Office is
"culturally unacceptable here" (border district of 63,000 students) I am
wondering if there is someone in our community of users/believers that has
come across data/studies that I could use disprove the MS ethos - I know
than in Texas, both PlanoISD and SanAntonioISD are huge open source
supporters, but I don't know if that has translated there, or anywhere else,
into a document that we can hold up as a banner.
Any ideas?"

Robert Pogson
Have server, will travel...
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