Microsoft Office 2011 and OS X Yosemite - dummies

Microsoft Office 2011 and OS X Yosemite

By Mark L. Chambers

Office has long been the productivity suite of choice in the Windows world, and it’s also been a favorite for even longer on the Macintosh side. Perhaps this is a good spot to remind everyone that Excel originated on the Mac!

Lots of hard work was put into the latest Mac version of Microsoft Office, and it shows. Office 2011 for Mac more closely mirrors the design of the PC version of Office (as you can see by Microsoft Word for Mac shown), but it still includes everything you’d demand from a native OS X application (such as Pages from iWork, which is Apple’s competing office productivity suite).

An open document on Word for Mac.

However, as with OS X itself, Office 2011 for Mac isn’t just an attractive exterior. Consider some of the advantages of Office 2011:

  • Perfect document compatibility with the Windows version of Office: You can both read and write documents with transparent ease, no matter which platform gets the file. Documents can be shared between platforms on the same network.

  • Mirrored commands: Office 2013 for Windows and Office for Mac 2011 have similar menu items, dialogs, and settings, thus making OS X instantly familiar to anyone who’s used Office on a Windows PC.

  • Support for native Aqua features: These features include transparent graphics in your documents, input and confirmation sheets, and palettes for formatting.

  • Tons of templates, samples, and support files: Microsoft doesn’t scrimp on ready-to-use documents and templates, as well as additional fonts, clip art, and web samples.

  • Outlook: Office for Mac 2011 includes a version of Outlook that’s similar to the Windows version in scope and power. It combines most of the features you find in the Apple Mail, Calendar, and Contacts applications.

Besides Outlook, Office for Mac 2011 includes three applications:

  • Word: The word-processing application that rules the planet

  • Excel: The leading spreadsheet application

  • PowerPoint: A favorite presentation development application

The Office for Mac Home & Student suite costs about $150 at the time of this writing. You might save a few dollars if you buy it online from a web store.