Apple Unveils iWork '08
Apple has unveiled iWork '08, a significant upgrade to Apple's productivity software suite featuring new versions of Pages and Keynote word processing and presentation applications, and introducing an innovative new spreadsheet application called "Numbers." Numbers introduces the concept of intelligent tables on a flexible canvas, a new approach that makes it easy to organize information, create calculations, analyze results and make spreadsheets look as great as they work. Pages '08 now features distinct modes for streamlined word processing and flexible page layout, a new contextual format bar and change tracking, and Keynote '08 now includes text effects, transitions and themes that help users easily compose spectacular presentations, and Smart Builds with easy-to-set-up A-to-B animations that make impressive animations easy for anyone to create.
Numbers '08 is a new approach to spreadsheets that allows people to organize their information, interact with their data and calculations and make their spreadsheets easy to understand and print. With multiple intelligent tables on a flexible graphics canvas, users can rearrange information, resize and add columns — all without breaking their spreadsheet. Each table is a full-blown spreadsheet with automatic header and footer rows, easy sorting and filtering, and automatic cell naming so creating, reading and maintaining formulas is easy. Common functions can be dragged to any cell, and a total of 150 functions are available spanning a wide range of calculations, including numeric, date and time, financial and statistical. Interactive checkboxes and sliders let users change cell values easily to explore different scenarios and see their results instantly. Users can create stunning 2D and 3D charts that are automatically updated as data changes, then complement them with rich graphics, photos and text labels. Interactive printing makes it easy to fit a document on a single page or rearrange and resize tables and objects across multiple pages.
Pages '08 now has two distinct modes: streamlined word processing that makes it easy to create stunning documents in seconds; and flexible page layout, which gives users complete control over the position of objects on the page. Pages includes 140 Apple-designed templates that let users easily create letters, reports, newsletters and brochures. A new contextual format bar gives users the exact set of tools they need at their fingertips whether they're editing text, creating a table or adjusting an image. Change tracking lets users collaborate with others on a document by displaying each person's edits in different colors, then accept or reject each proposed change.
Keynote '08, Apple's application for creating cinema-quality presentations, introduces new Smart Builds to make it easy for anyone to create spectacular animations by simply dropping graphics onto a slide. More advanced users can control every aspect of their animations with new A-to-B animations to define movement, rotation, scaling and opacity. Keynote's new Instant Alpha feature makes it easy to remove unwanted backgrounds from photos and graphics without needing a graphics department. Users can record their presentations along with a voice-over, then deliver them to audiences in person or over the Internet via podcasting or YouTube. The new Keynote also includes a collection of new text effects, transitions and themes.
iWork '08 can import Microsoft Word, PowerPoint, Excel and AppleWorks word processing, presentation and spreadsheet files, and can export documents in Microsoft Office file formats or PDFs for easy sharing.
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