Adobe does Word as Buzzword

Office for Mere Mortals
Your beginners guide to the secrets of Microsoft Office
Invalid email address
Tips and help for Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Outlook from Microsoft Office experts.  Give it a try. You can unsubscribe at any time.  Office for Mere Mortals has been running for over 20 years, we've never, ever revealed or sold subscriber details.  Privacy policy

Adobe, makers of the Acrobat / PDF system, have entered the world of online word-processing with their ‘Buzzword’ product available for free from Acrobat.com.

Adobe, makers of the Acrobat / PDF system, have entered the world of online word-processing with their ‘Buzzword’ product available for free from Acrobat.com.

It’s a slick looking online word-processor because it uses Adobe own Flash technology. Most people have Flash installed as a browser add-on, if only to view some online ads. The result is a fancier looking interface than with HTML / Javascript based systems like Google Docs. It has sliding toolbars, icons and all the other neat stuff that makes Buzzword look like a traditional word-processor and not a complex web page.

The sliding toolbar is a clever way to put many options into a narrow space. The colored icons represent separate toolbars, click on the icon and that toolbar slides into view.

630 Adobe Buzzword slidiing toolbar icons - Adobe does Word as Buzzword

 

The toolbars are Font (default on the left) then on the right are Paragraph, List, Image, Table, Comment.

At the bottom are options to share the document, History (the ‘statue head’ icon), word count, flagged words (spell check), view zoom and connection status.

Buzzword has all the features you’d expect from an online word-processor – lists, tables, images etc, document history / track changes etc. Naturally it has document sharing capabilities – several people can edit or read the same document at the same time. Buzzword works both offline and online.

You can import documents from both the ‘old’ MS Word format (.doc) and the newer Office 2007 / OOXML format (.docx) as well as plain text, RTF and, curiously, Word 2003 XML documents. You can export documents to all the import formats plus plain HTML (in a compressed ZIP) and, naturally, Adobe PDF. The other major document standard, ODF, is a notable omission. There are inevitable conversion issues when the document formatting gets more complex. There are well documented font substitutions.

630 Adobe Buzzword export document options - Adobe does Word as Buzzword

 

Some elements of the interface are different from what MS Word users are accustomed to. That’s not to say that it’s bad, in fact the table editing interface is extremely interesting. If nothing else it shows the Microsoft way isn’t the only choice.

Commenting a document is more overtly supported by Buzzword. Each paragraph and table has a small, unobtrusive comment icon on the right-side. Click on that to insert a document comment at that point.

630 Adobe Buzzword comment icon tag for each paragraph - Adobe does Word as Buzzword

 

Buzzword is an interesting alternative for people who want something more familiar and easy to use than Google Docs. If you found Google Docs a bit cumbersome you might prefer Adobe’s Buzzword.

It is certainly an impressive public debut, especially when compared to Microsoft’s lame efforts in this area.


Office Watch hasn’t reviewed Microsoft Office Live Workspace in detail and we know that’s a strange omission given our focus on Microsoft Office. Frankly we can’t bring ourselves to do it – if only because of the motherly advice “if you can’t find something nice to say, don’t say anything at all”.

subs profile e1563205311409 - Adobe does Word as Buzzword
Latest news & secrets of Microsoft Office

Microsoft Office experts give you tips and help for Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Outlook.

Give it a try. You can unsubscribe at any time.  Office Watch has been running for over 20 years, we've never, ever revealed or sold subscriber details.  Privacy policy
Invalid email address