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I have posted about how to get versions of OpenOffice.org for the Mac, to run under the X 11 window system. Version 1.9.109 has crashed on me a couple of times, but the recovery system means I have not lost too much work.

The good news about this build, though, is that the Alt-key (option key) works. This means that the Styles menu we set up in our templates as part of the ICE project can now be keyboard driven. I’ve been using an Alt-driven style menu for five years now, mostly in Microsoft Word, and not having it on the Mac was seriously frustrating.

It’s worth learning keyboard shortcuts for formatting tasks in any application on any platform. Helps the writing flow and improves the quality of your typing, as you can leave the hands in place and not have to reorient them after each mouse movement. The only minor issue with Alt-S (for Styles) is that it means ‘send’ in Outlook. Not always good to send half-finished emails.


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