The primary purpose of icWord is to open and display files created with Microsoft’s Word application, without owning an expensive copy of Microsoft Office. You can also open AppleWorks files and now in v3 you can also open NisusWriter documents.
In addition to displaying documents from the above word processors, you can also use icWord to convert documents from one format to another – making it possible to edit them with software you do own.
In recent reviews, I have rated icWord as “9 out of 10” and then when they released a Mac OS X native version, its’ rating increased to a full “10 out of 10”.
Now, with release of icWord 3.0, I have to increase that rating to a “12 out of 10” because it supplies an incredibly important feature for me – the ability to read Microsoft PowerPoint files.
With the introduction of the ability to display PowerPoint presentations, I now rate icWord 3.0 as a “12 out of 10”
While the major improvements in icWord 3.0 focus on its’ ability to display PowerPoint Presentations and NisusWriter documents, you can also convert documents from Word, AppleWorks and text files in to NisusWriter format.
There is improved support of Word fields and Word Art; better viewing of tables and Rich Text Formatted (RTF) documents; as well as the usual collection of bug fixes.
I am still after a simple and easy to use application that will allow me to open and read Microsoft Publisher files on a Macintosh – perhaps icWord 4.0 :-). Also, now that icWord supports PowerPoint files, the ability to read Apple Keynote documents would also be useful – perhaps a name change to icDocuments would be in order then 🙂
If you have a list of features you’d like to see included in a future release, just email Panergy Software. They are very receptive to suggestions.
icExcel allows you to open, view, print and convert spreadsheets created with Microsoft Excel or AppleWorks.
The major improvement in icExcel 2.0 over previous versions is its’ ability to open files saved in Microsoft Excel XML format (MS XML-SS). You can also convert files in this format.
Other enhancements include the ability to recognize quoted text when opening CSV files; now able to show Excel text boxes and Word Art and a few other bug fixes.
OneClickConvert is the latest offering from Panergy Software and will be of benefit to people such as magazine editors, web designers and anyone who has to regularly convert documents from a variety of formats into a format that can be processed by their own applications.
OneClickConvert is very simple to use, yet incredibly powerful with a wide range of conversion options available.
To use it, you just launch OneClickConvert, then drag the document(s) you wish to convert onto theOneClickConvert Conversion Bar and it will automatically convert your document(s) to the format specified.
OneClickConvert has three pre-defined conversion options;
- Convert to AppleWorks
- Convert to RTF
- Convert to Text
However, you can define your own conversion options by selecting New Profile from the Conversion Menu.
The first tab allows you to select the format of the source file – most of the time you would use Auto Recognize, which gets OneClickConvert to scan the file and determine what it actually is, but you can tell it to only process certain types of files like Word documents or RTF.
On the same tab, you define what format you wish to convert the documents to and here you have the choice of AppleWorks 5 Word Processor, AppleWorks 6 Word Processor, NisusWriter, RTF, Plain Text or Unicode Text.
Unfortunately, there is currently no option that allows you to convert TO a Microsoft Word document – only from one.
The second tab allows you to define where you wish to place converted documents or even move the original document after converting it. By default, OneClickConvert leaves the original file intact and places the converted document in the same directory.
The final tab allows you to specify if the converted documents are automatically open and if so, with which application.
OneClickConvert is very simple to use, yet incredibly powerful
Confused About Which Application to Use?
With three applications from Panergy Software doing similar tasks, it may seem confusing which is the right application for you to choose, but hopefully the following table will help you decide which suit your own needs best.
In short, if you need to do a lot of conversion from one file format to another, than OneClickConvert is the better option. If you mainly need to read a variety of “text-based” word-processing style documents or PowerPoint presentations, then icWord is the application of choice. If spreadsheets are your thing, then icExcel is for you.
Purchasing Anergy Software
You can purchase Panergy Software products directly from their website and they now offer a variety of currencies to use to purchase, including Australian Dollars, British Pounds, Danish Kroner, the Euro, New Zealand Dollars and of course US Dollars.
You can purchase icWord 3.0 or icExcel individually for AUD$29.67 each (US$19.95) or you can buy a bundle of both together for AUD$44.53 (US$29.95).
OneClickConvert 1.0 costs AUD$44.53 (US$29.95)
Panergy Software also offer a 30-day Money Back Guaranty and if you are unsatisfied with either icWord or icExcel and need to purchase Microsoft Office with 90-days they will provide a full refund – see the Panergy Software website for more details on their money back guaranty.
Demo Versions Available
You can download 30-day trial versions of each of the Panergy applications for you to “try before you buy”.
In December 2001, I first wrote about icWord and icExcel, then in April 2002, I wrote about the updated versions. You may also wish to check out those articles;
A copy of this article, with colour images, is available from my website, http://www.nicholaspyers.com.
Interested in reprinting this article? Any non-profit Apple Macintosh User Group (MUG) may re-print, free of charge, any of the articles written by Nicholas Pyers found at http://www.nicholaspyers.com/articles. There are just a couple of conditions, which basically boil down to letting us know – for the full terms and conditions, please visit http://www.nicholaspyers.com/reprints.