Nisus Writer Pro is the best Word Processor on the mac

Full disclosure: I have not been paid to write this but I have been given a Not for sale copy of the program so that I could evaluate this past the 15 day limit. I will continue to use this and update this story if I run into problems or find useful information.

Yes, even better than Microsoft Word. Let me explain why.

I support Mac users everyday with Microsoft Word and other word processing programs. Let me tell you that when the average person tries to use Macintosh Word they don’t like it at all. It isn’t that Word doesn’t have enough features, it just has so many and they are hidden so it makes it hard to use.

Nisus Writer Pro is the best Word Processor on the macI used Nisus in a way that many people are going to use it. To work with their resume. I had my resume in PDF and just on a lark, I tried opening the PDF in Nisus. It worked! Not only did it import it, but it kept much of the formatting. It imported more of the formatting than Word has when I have tried it, and it was immediate. This started things off on a great foot.

So then I thought that I should probably run a spell check. I couldn’t find the spell check option. Do you know why? Because Nisus already had done the spell check!  I noticed the words in red and a simple right-click and I had the correct word pop up in a list. Much easier than Word.

Ok things were going great. I wonder if this thing could export to PDF? Yes, a paid version exports just fine without any watermarks. This is incredible. Adobe PDF is very expensive, but a program that imports and exports PDF avoids the need for an expensive purchase. For 90% this is all they need with PDF editing. What a fantastic bargain this is $79.99. They have an express version for $19.99 and that is a deal as well.

Since we are talking about money, lets talk about its competition. For one copy, the cheapest you could get Office 365 is $69 a year which includes the Word, Excel, so on. For about the same cost of a year with Office you get a program that does 95% of what most people use Word for, and you aren’t tied to MS yearly pricing. This is a great deal for most people. Avoid using Apple Pages. Apple took out much of the functionality of Pages from the 09 version they had, and never really replaced it. In addition people who try to use it now say that it is unreliable and hasn’t had many updates. This is the same thing that happened to iWeb and other Apple software that was abandoned. I think the writing is on the wall for Pages. Apple will kill it just like they killed the great AppleWorks program I loved to use.

Going back to the functionality of Nisus. I think what makes this a clear winner is not only its speed, but its interface. Most people can’t remember the commands and locations of how to change things in Word. This shows you most of your options on the same screen. You don’t need to remember, you just look over and you will probably find what you need. This isn’t a dumbed down interface however. It is more intelligently designed. If you want to do more advanced things they are there, you just need to click on another tab to change things like tables, shapes or margins.

I have to be honest that I looked for a problem with this program and I couldn’t find it. Every advanced feature that anyone uses in Word was here. It has macros, comments, ability to change styles. It even lets you manage documents in its file menu. Features that Word doesn’t have. The only thing that I could wish for is that it had cloud integration like with Box, google drive or so on. Perhaps they are working on that. Still this is a very solid program that any Apple using person would find useful. I recommend this.

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Separating work and personal technology and files

It is understandable people want to combine their work and personal lives, it just becomes problematic at times.

What I have noticed is that people especially want to use their computer in a personal way if they have a laptop. Since more people have laptops, the mixture of work and personal files and technology is complicated. Last week I spoke about how someone can manage multiple Apple ID’s. Now we need to discuss how to handle everything else.

The old way to store files was on a local computer. I have discussed that cloud storage is much safer, easier, and more cool. For people who use work computers, setting up a cloud storage is ideal. Then when the employee leaves, no files need to be copied. Of course there is a risk of employees copying company information to their personal accounts, but in many environments this doesn’t seem to be a concern.

Separating work and personal technology and filesHowever if this can’t be done, then using an external USB drive is another option. Someone can store their personal files on the external drive, and that drive can have cloud storage enabled on it. This is a really nice option as well that bypasses third-party cloud services.

Applications are more difficult. If they are iPhone applications they are linked to the Apple ID. If they are anything else, they tend to be linked to the company/person who bought them. Most people don’t want to keep track of serial numbers and I don’t blame them. I have kept track of my own serial numbers, but unfortunately what happens is that they stop working when newer versions of software appear. So practically speaking, keeping track of software serial numbers is less useful as years go by.

What some people are doing now is using USB applications on a usb drive, and running those applications on whatever computer system they are on. I always thought this was too much of a compromise on program functionality. I have never tried it, but many IT people speak highly of this method. I wonder how careful people would be to keep track of their USB drive. I tend to lose mine by lending them out to clients. So this never was a seriously considered method for me.

I like the Keep it Simple Silly method of life. I just use the applications that are default on a computer, and keep my data in the cloud. Keep the work to a minimum and easy to restore. This works for me, but of course its your life and values.

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