February 17, 2019

StarOffice 8: Office Killer? - page 7

Alternatives to Microsoft Office

  • March 6, 2006
  • By Martin C. Brown

Draw is a vector drawing package that adds some useful extensions that turn Draw into more than a simple diagram application. For example, you can draw objects to scale and show the scale and relative size. With the addition of a 3D modeling component Draw just stops short of treading on the toes of a low-end CAD package.

Draw also provides a common feature in many illustration packages--the idea of connected objects. Connections have relevance because the lines drawn between objects remain connected even if you move the individual objects. For example, you can create an organization chart and move individuals about the diagram while retaining their relationship to other individuals.

I did have a few problems with the connections--occasionally the connection would 'hop' between objects, even when I'd set the source object specifically. I also couldn't find any way of automatically adjusting the layout--a feature I find useful when designing networks and organization charts for illustrations in articles and books. An auto-layout feature tidies up the display and keep objects consistent along certain layout models.

There are also a couple of oddities in the Draw application. Documents support multiple pages, and there is a Pages navigation panel, but the individual pages are called 'Slides.' I know why this is occurring, but I could see the difference causing problems in a support call.

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