Visual Basic to return to Mac Office

Not until next version, however

According to a press release issued by Microsoft's Macintosh Business Unit Tuesday, Office 2008, which debuted at this year's MacWorld Expo in January, was the biggest release of the productivity suite for the Mac platform ever. It's selling three times faster than the previous version, say Microsoft sales reps.

It wasn't all cheers for the latest version of Mac Office, however. Business users, in particular, were dismayed that Microsoft removed support for VBA (Visual Basic for Applications) from the product, which meant that it couldn't run custom scripts developed for previous versions, or for Windows Office. But in a rare about-face, it seems that VBA may be returning to a future version of Mac Office — though a precise timeline remains elusive.

Macintosh Business Unit employee Erik Schwiebert blogged about the issue on Tuesday. "When we came to the realisation in 2006 that there was no way for us to keep VB in the product and still ship Office 2008 on any semblance of the schedule we wanted, we announced its removal," he wrote, "but kept looking at how to bring it back into the suite even before we shipped."

In the end, it wasn't brought back. Instead, the Mac Business unit helped write up a guide on how to transition existing VBA applications to AppleScript. But while that was helpful and certainly in keeping with "the Macintosh way," it wasn't much help to those who needed to keep their Macs in sync with the Windows PCs around the office.

Fortunately, Microsoft seems to have listened to its customers. According to Schwiebert, the next version of Office for Mac is already underway, and Microsoft is even seeking guidance as to which elements of Visual Basic are most important to Mac users. Leave a comment on his blog if you have ideas.

In the meantime, Mac Office users will want to take notice of the release of Service Pack 1 for Office 2008, which also appeared on Tuesday. According to Schwiebert, "there are over 1000 fixes in SP1, including the re-addition of some features that were glaringly absent when compared to Office 2004." Unfortunately, VBA isn't one of them — not yet, anyway — but a bugfix pack like that ought to give anyone enough reason to upgrade.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Neil McAllister

PC World
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Kurt Hegetschweiler

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

It’s perfect for mobile workers. Just take it out — it’s small enough to sit anywhere — turn it on, load a sheet of paper, and start printing.

Matthew Stivala

HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer

The HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer is a great device that fits perfectly into my fast paced and mobile lifestyle. My first impression of the printer itself was how incredibly compact and sleek the device was.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?