,wkempf wrote

@evildictaitor: The heaviest usage of Word is probably business usage, where documents are generally not printed. Instead they are e-mailed and shared on network shares or SharePoint type servers. So the speculation may not be entirely BS. Combine the fact that most documents probably aren't printed with the fact that most people probably use Ctrl+P and not a menu/toolbar button and the fact that Print is buried three clicks deep doesn't mean a whole lot, IMHO.

No - the most common use for Word is drafting documents for meetings, contracts negotiations, documentation for work that's been done and drafting documents in one organisation to prove work done by another as well as invoices, a huge fraction of which will get printed out (and those that don't often get converted to PDFs which is outside of Microsoft's IP control anyway)

Also, from the metrics gathered by the Office team well over two thirds of people printing documents in Office 2003 did so by clicking File -> Print and many others did so by clicking the printer button on the toolstrip - contrary to what power users think, most people don't use keyboard shortcuts.

That said, I also don't think the Ribbon is appropriate most of the time. The inclusion in the latest version of Paint, for instance, is rather lame.

Agreed. The Ribbon interface was to get around the fact that Office has an absolutely absurd amount of functionality, almost all of which is business critical for someone (and thus can't be removed). The Ribbon is an attempt by the Office team to manage the horrendously large amount of buttons, menus, toolbars, floating windows and dialog boxes that were needed to contain all of the interface to allow people to use Office properly, and by many accounts does so pretty well.

The Office team were absolutely not trying to obsolete the menu strip, or claim that the Ribbon is better in all apps - indeed if you read the ribbon documentation for external developers they strongly advice developers not to use the Ribbon unless they really can't cope with the number of menus and buttons in their current user interface.

I therefore absolutely agree with you that I think the Windows team have got it wrong by adding Ribbon to Paint, Wordpad and Explorer, but I still think the Office team were still right to introduce it for Office apps.