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VBA Will Return To Mac Office 113

An anonymous reader sends a pointer to Erik Schwiebert's blog — he's the design lead of Microsoft's Mac Business Unit — where he announces that Visual Basic will be returning to Mac Office. Not in Office 2008, which started shipping earlier this year. We discussed the announced death of VBA in Mac Office 17 months back. Schwiebert says that the interval to the next version of Mac Office will be shorter than 4 years but isn't able to offer any more detail. The blog post calls for feedback on what features of VBA and Windows interoperability are most important to people.
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VBA Will Return To Mac Office

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  • NeoOffice... (Score:4, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday May 14, 2008 @08:17AM (#23401132)
    ...already has support [] for it.
  • Re:Wow (Score:1, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday May 14, 2008 @08:35AM (#23401262)
    The previous support was written for PowerPC and they could not easily port the VBA from Windows (written in MASM) to the new Macs.

    But crazy conspiracy theories sound more interesting.
  • Re:Wow (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday May 14, 2008 @08:41AM (#23401308)
    As mentioned in the original blog, and in the comments of this blog, the VBA support was cut because the VBA engine in Office 2004 was very specifically designed to operate on the PowerPC architecture. The engine would have to be rewritten to run on Intel on a Macintosh and that was not something that could be accomplished in their schedule. So they would have to either delay Office 2008, make it PowerPC only and run under Rosetta or cut VBA from this release and review it again at a later date. MS chose the last option.

    VBA is sort of a double-edged sword. It is a fairly decent cross-platform automation language for the Office suite and is used often to write macros and applications, but it is also often used with COM-based libraries to interact with external systems. On a Mac those COM libraries do not exist, so anything beyond basic macros would not be cross platform anyway.
  • Re:That is _so_ cool (Score:3, Informative)

    by Zelos ( 1050172 ) on Wednesday May 14, 2008 @09:23AM (#23401756)
    Sure, VBA is pretty nice for that kind of thing (much quicker than learning Perl/Python or something), the problem comes when people try to use VBA for something it's not intended for. The fact that Option Explicit isn't on by default leads to some pretty nasty code, in my experience.

    My first programming job was writing a 15,000 line inventory management system in VBA, it was a horrendous mixture of VBA and VB ActiveX that stopped working as soon as they upgraded to Office 2000.
  • by e4g4 ( 533831 ) on Wednesday May 14, 2008 @10:47AM (#23403058)

    I find that Office 2004 is quite a bit faster than Office 2008
    Seconded! I'm still completely baffled by the fact that Word 2008 takes almost a full minute to load on my brand new MacBook - while Word 2004 (running in rosetta) clocks in at about 15 seconds.
  • by BradleyUffner ( 103496 ) on Wednesday May 14, 2008 @11:16AM (#23403512) Homepage
    I think You should read it again. The license states that the OS, and office productivity components can be used for actual office work, not just development. Same with the development tools and SDK. About the only bits in MSDN that can't be used for normal work are the Server pieces, like Exchange, and SQL servers.
  • by karmic_penguin ( 845053 ) on Wednesday May 14, 2008 @03:07PM (#23407880)
    In Word go to Word > Preferences
    Click on "General"
    uncheck "WYSIWYG font and style menus"
    uncheck "Show Project Gallery At Startup"
    Restart Word

    Office 2008 starts in ~4 seconds on my MacBook. I could care less about VBA, although I suppose if someone ever sent me something with VBA in it I could get NeoOffice. I got a cheap academic license through my university.

Thus spake the master programmer: "Time for you to leave." -- Geoffrey James, "The Tao of Programming"