back to article UK data watchdog's inaugural tech strategy was written with... *drumroll* Word 2010

Staying up to date with the latest tech seems to be proving challenging for the UK's data protection watchdog. In a bid to demonstrate it's aware of the fast pace of innovation and how this is changing the areas it regulates, the Information Commissioner's Office recently issued its first technology strategy. The strategy …

  1. Rameses Niblick the Third Kerplunk Kerplunk Whoops Where's My Thribble? Silver badge

    Really?

    Don't we have better things to get upset about?

    And if they have a word processing product that sufficiently meets their needs, then why exactly spend extra money on a newer product? Spending money on "upgrades" that actually don't give any benefit to the end users is surely a waste of money?

    1. GruntyMcPugh Silver badge

      Re: Really?

      but, but, you can't synergise your leveraged cloud based social network peer to peer contributory hipster hybrid crowdfunded kickstarter with Office 2010.

    2. paulf
      Alert

      Re: Really?

      I'm still using Word and Excel from Office XP (2002). Fuck this Ribbon shit.

      Oh and regarding "The ICO is widely seen as cash-strapped..." perhaps if they had the powers to make sure their pocket change fines were actually paid before the convicted shell company was liquidated maybe the chocolate teapot would have some more cash knocking around to fund their melting operations.

      1. K

        Re: Really?

        "The ICO is widely seen as cash-strapped..."

        They don't get the money, it goes elsewhere (probably treasury). My partner works for another regulator, they earn a she'd load by also offering pre-assessment advice, but they're not aloud to spend it. There budget is strictly set by government guidelines..

        1. 's water music Silver badge
          Headmaster

          Re: Really?

          They don't get the money, it goes elsewhere (probably treasury). My partner works for another regulator, they earn a she'd load by also offering pre-assessment advice, but they're not aloud to spend it. There budget is strictly set by government guidelines..

          ----------> [dies]

          1. Alister Silver badge

            Re: Really?

            They don't get the money, it goes elsewhere (probably treasury). My partner works for another regulator, they earn a she'd load by also offering pre-assessment advice, but they're not aloud to spend it. There budget is strictly set by government guidelines..

            ----------> [dies]

            I really, really hope that English isn't K's first language.

            1. Tim99 Silver badge
              Coat

              Re: Really?

              @Alister

              Perhaps K's first language is English but the text was run through Word 2010's spelling and grammar checker before postiing?

            2. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

              Re: Really?

              "I really, really hope that English isn't K's first language."

              I was wondering what word processor they were using. Probably one with rickety bearings and a few bits broken off.

            3. K
              Pint

              Re: Really?

              Unfortunately Alister it is!

              That was rushed out before I had to run into a meeting! often I read my own posts (the following day) and realise I had f*cked up! But I blame the 10am beers

      2. Cynical Pie

        Re: Really?

        All money from MPNs (they aren't fines) goes to the Treasury Consolidated fund so it doesn't matter a jot to the ICO budget whether its collected or not as they don't see the money.

        if they did I suspect you might see a more enthusiastic and rigorous enforcement structure.

        Also bear in mind that the ICO now is far more aggressive than it was in the early 2000s when I was there which is a story in itself!!

    3. Christian Berger

      Re: Really?

      "And if they have a word processing product that sufficiently meets their needs, then why exactly spend extra money on a newer product?"

      Yeah, though I don't think Word meets anybodies needs, it's usually used because people don't know anything better, or they are forced by their IT-departments to use it.

      1. ardj

        Re: Really?

        @Christian Berger

        Yup, Word pretty terrible - but it does things that LibreOffice won't / can't.

        (embarrassed occasional user of Word 2003, having removed W2010 from every machine I own)

    4. Graybyrd
      Trollface

      Re: Really?

      Don't we have better things to get upset about?

      Exactly. It's not like they used Microsoft Works ... or WordPad.

    5. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: If only they had used LibreOffice 6.

      If they had only used LibreOffice 6, they'd have been saved the embarassment and be seen to be forward thinking. "It does the drudge", as they say.

    6. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: The Irony...Leaky 'Grey' data, from the ICO itself.

      That was your lesson learned folks - on leaky 'Grey' data from ICO itself and how it changes the whole perspective to show their bullshit narrative, "Do as I say, not as I do"

      Governments/Google (especially) thrive on the stuff, yet the ICO does fcuk all about Grey Data, even avoiding the fact of highlighting how Grey data/Shadow Databases work.

      We need a lot more transparency than we are currently getting, and that includes the ICO.

  2. This post has been deleted by its author

    1. John G Imrie

      Re: As Long As It Supports ODF.... ?

      It supports odf 1.1, but not version 1.2

  3. Sooty

    in fairness

    Office 2010 is the last version that is reasonably decent. It doesn't have the "modern" user interface, installs properly and, for a home user, has decent licencing terms allowing use on a desktop and laptop.

    1. chivo243 Silver badge
      Windows

      Re: in fairness

      @Sooty

      I am just as we speak, at the request of some users, installing Office 2016 and removing good ol Office 2010, seems time is marching on!

      1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

        Re: in fairness

        I'm defending my Office2010 install against the hoards of IT support - it's the last version of Excel that doesn't do cutesty little fruit machine animations when it updates a cell FFS

        1. Nick Ryan Silver badge

          Re: in fairness

          I'm defending my Office2010 install against the hoards of IT support - it's the last version of Excel that doesn't do cutesty little fruit machine animations when it updates a cell FFS

          Have you tried googling how to turn off Excel animations? There's a registry key that does the trick:

          Computer\HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\16.0\Common\Graphics\

          DWORD: DisableAnimations = 1

          You may need to create the Graphics Key and you'll almost certainly need to create the DWORD value. Replace the 16.0 with 15.0 for Office/Excel 2013.

          1. Wensleydale Cheese

            Re: in fairness

            "Computer\HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\16.0\Common\Graphics\

            DWORD: DisableAnimations = 1

            You may need to create the Graphics Key and you'll almost certainly need to create the DWORD value. Replace the 16.0 with 15.0 for Office/Excel 2013."

            FFS!

            IT'S NEARLY TWENTY SODDING THREE YEARS SINCE WINDOWS 95 HIT THE SCENE AND WE ARE STILL DICKING AROUND WITH DWORD VALUES?

            1. Dan 55 Silver badge

              Re: in fairness

              There'll be an AC along in a moment with a huge block of copy-pasted text to say how awesome the registry is, for some reason.

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: in fairness

                And if this was spiceworks or another windows-centric site, another AC would then be along with a PowerShell script to show how awesome MS is.

                Oh heck, I'll give it a whirl. See, it's easy:

                get-item ( no wait)

                Get-Item --Path (um...) -Path (there we go!)

                HKEY (WTF is an HKEY, why not just call it "."?)_CURRENT_MACHINE (no, my *last* machine, um where was I?) (oh, wait)

                CURRENT_USER (that's better)\Software\Microsoft\(you are in a hive of registry keys, all alike...)\Office (ugh, this color scheme is terrible...)

        2. Zippy's Sausage Factory
          Mushroom

          Re: in fairness

          I'm defending my Office2010 install against the hoards of IT support - it's the last version of Excel that doesn't do cutesty little fruit machine animations when it updates a cell FFS

          Excel 2010 was solid as a rock. Excel 2016 from Office 365 however... well let's just say it's better than it used to be.

          OK, let's now. It has more bugs than a cockroach farm, crashes at the drop of a hat, corrupts your files.

          Seriously, I used to just use Excel when it was 2010. Nowadays I have Libre Office installed because... well, because Excel.

          Sorry I needed a chance to vent... now I need to go recover some workbooks, if you'll excuse me...

      2. TRT Silver badge

        Re: in fairness

        I too am doing that, but it is an enforced obsolescence. For several users, it is because Pitmans is no longer doable on Word 2010.

        That is the last decent version of the Office, as someone else commented above.

      3. tiggity Silver badge

        Re: in fairness

        Just shows that users don't always know whats best for them!

    2. Ken Hagan Gold badge
      Windows

      Re: in fairness

      "Office 20102003 is the last version that is reasonably decent."

      FTFY, as the young'uns appear to say nowadays.

  4. hplasm
    Thumb Up

    All of the above comments.

    It just works.

    (Unlike the later versions )

  5. Dr. G. Freeman

    If it was in WordPerfect then I'd be worried.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Might not be current but Office 2010 ( as long as it is patched) is under extended support until 2020.

  7. This post has been deleted by its author

  8. LenG

    Strapped for cash

    Can you say LibreOffice ?

  9. Jim-234

    Office 2010 is sometimes preferred over the later versions

    Office 2010 is sometimes a bit better behaving than the later versions.

    I'm not sure I'd really suggest upgrading from 2010 office unless you had a reason to do so.

    Personally I prefer to run Office 2010 myself over the later versions which seem to run endlessly slower on ever faster hardware.

    1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

      Re: Office 2010 is sometimes preferred over the later versions

      But can Office 2010 accomodate all the new innovations in intra-office memos in the last 8years?

    2. Korev Silver badge

      Re: Office 2010 is sometimes preferred over the later versions

      Personally I prefer to run Office 2010 myself over the later versions which seem to run endlessly slower on ever faster hardware.

      What Intel Giveth, Microsoft Taketh Away. A bit old, but I'm sure its conclusion still holds.

    3. jonfr

      Re: Office 2010 is sometimes preferred over the later versions

      Software running slower in faster hardware is not a issue that is only limited to Windows or Microsoft software. This is also a issue in the Linux world. The problem is the same, complexity is increasing at the software level and the bug level is expanding in accordance with how complicated the software is starting to be.

      What Linux does better than Windows that the memory management is considerably better and the result is that you don't have to reboot the operating system after few days of continuous running.

      I am going to move my Desktop (email, web browsing, etc) back to Gentoo Linux and keep Windows 10 for specialized usage (backup, games, other things).

  10. Uberior

    This will probably shock some regular readers of The Register, but last week I needed to quickly prepare a letter during a snowie power cut.

    Clearly the laptop would work, but as for the printer?

    So, my ornamental Adler was pulled from its place by the side of my desk and a sheet of A4 retrieved from the printer tray and a minute or two later a typo-free letter was being pulled from the platen.

    If all you are doing is preparing a basic document, you really don't need all the gubbins.

    1. Martin an gof Silver badge

      prepare a letter during a snowie power cut

      My sister took a Canon Starwriter to uni back in 1990 or so. I bet that would run for hours on a typical UPS.

      I have a UPS powering my entire "office" *, including the printer, though as the printer is a Xerox solid ink Phaser, it doesn't stay up for terribly long if the printer is actually printing :-)

      Why? Well, the Phaser needs to keep a reservoir of liquid ink. If the power is interrupted even for a second, the printer goes through a cleaning phase and wastes a whole load of ink. We have quite a lot of short-term power cuts where I live.

      M.

      * Office consisting of two AMD-based OpenSuse machines, an Intel Mac mini, a Raspberry Pi, an Acorn RiscPC and all the associated gubbins. I have lots of children all wanting to do homework at the same time :-)

  11. Aladdin Sane Silver badge

    Could be worse

    Could be O365.

  12. Inventor of the Marmite Laser Silver badge

    Not so much about keeping up with the cutting edge

    More like one of the last iterations of Word, or indeed Orifice, that is actually anywhere near as usable as 2003 version.

  13. Christian Berger

    Well it's not a technical post

    It's not uncommon for non-technical people to use Office Software. Besides lots of people actually enjoy wasting their time getting a program like Word to output something decently looking onto the paper. I mean if you can do a task in 10 hours instead of one, the result must be much more worth.

  14. Dan 55 Silver badge
    Thumb Up

    UK's data watchdog has its priorities right

    After Office 2010, Office started to become cloudy.

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    'The ICO is widely seen as cash-strapped'

    No coincidence! This is a very revealing article from a Pro-Business site:

    -

    https://www.bloomberg.com/news/features/2018-03-01/britain-s-white-collar-cops-are-getting-too-good-at-their-job

  16. Primus Secundus Tertius

    ODS varieties

    Charities in the UK can claim a form of tax relief called Gift Aid. I am responsible for one such charity.

    HMRC (the British tax authority) requires claims to be submitted as a spreadsheet in .ods format, using a template they provide. Except there are two templates: one for files created by Excel 2010 or later, and the other for files created with Libre Office. (Other spreadsheet programs are not guaranteed to work.)

    Two ods formats! So much for a unified open document strategy.

  17. martinusher Silver badge

    So what's the purpose of continually updating Word?

    I've been limping along with various Word versions since the earliest versions that ran on MS-DOS. You really don't need a whole bunch of gimmicks to write documents -- I've used word processors since Wordstar on CP/M and text is still text -- and I've yet to come across someone who makes use of 'the latest'. Sure, you get people running new versions of Office tools; all they end up doing is trying to distribute documents to people who can't read them.

    Day to day I use anything from Office 97, 2002, 2010 and 'whatever the latest Office 365 version is'. Unlike many I don't find the newest versions particularly easy to use; they still don't mix text and graphics that reliably and their style management is still dreadful, but its something you learn to live with. (The Open Office variants work just as well, BTW, and they have the advantage that there's none of this "doesn't work with version 'X' nonsense" that bedevils Microsoft Office users.)

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: So what's the purpose of continually updating Word?

      In Gubbermint circles you are not permitted to use unsupported software. So Office 2010 is out for most of the public sector in 2020. The costs for 'upgrading' are considerable. But compliance will be the main driver for upgrading.

      MS licensing does its best to force everyone down the O365 route. Schools like it but no one else.

      LibraOffice is unlikely to be considered because it is not Office and I doubt many IT departments have the stomach for fighting their users on that.

      But for 99% of users we could still be using Office 97 without many problems.

      1. Martin an gof Silver badge

        Re: So what's the purpose of continually updating Word?

        LibraOffice is unlikely to be considered because it is not Office and I doubt many IT departments have the stomach for fighting their users on that.

        You may be right, but since ODF is the officially sanctioned document format, there's absolutely no reason why LibreOffice couldn't be used.

        M.

  18. Zwuramunga

    What does it do that Office 2003 Does Not?

    No real innovation in about 20 years.

    1. Primus Secundus Tertius

      Re: What does it do that Office 2003 Does Not?

      Word 2013 reads text-mode pdf files as editable text. I have done it.

  19. Roopee
    Coat

    I do all my strategy documents...

    ...in Word 2000. Does exactly the same job now as it did 18 years ago, faster and without crashing, stalling and all the other annoying things that 'supported' versions do, and I think, is much nicer to use. I have copies of and have used every version of Word for Windows from v2 to 2016 and I prefer 2000. Who needs support for software that doesn't need to change?

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