How to bypass the Office 2013 start screen

Some of the applications in Microsoft's Office 2013 suite launch with a start screen by default. On the left side of the start screen is a list of recent documents and on the right side, a list of templates. It's a useful feature, but if you prefer, you can bypass the start screen and go right to the edit screens of those Office programs (Word, Excel, PowerPoint). Here's how:

From within the main edit screen, go to File > Options or use the keyboard shortcut, ALT+F, T. Under the General Options tab, go to Startup options … Read more

Microsoft to further integrate Yammer with Office this summer

Buried in a press release on Yammer momentum are a couple of new details about Microsoft's plans for integrating Yammer with SkyDrive Pro and Office Web Apps by summer 2013.

From the February 20 press release:

"SkyDrive Pro was previewed at the recent SharePoint Conference, and Yammer is implementing it as the underlying platform for file storage. In addition, Yammer is enhancing the ability to preview and edit files directly within Yammer feeds using Office Web Apps. The combination of these capabilities will dramatically enhance a user's ability to create, collaborate, share, and discover content within Yammer. … Read more

Microsoft addresses confusion over Office 2013 licensing

Can Office 2013 users transfer their license from one PC to another? Well, it depends.

Microsoft recently created some confusion and controversy when it revealed that Office 2013 would be restricted to one PC. People who need to install the software on another PC are out of luck, or so it seems. Ed Bott of CNET sister site ZDNet illuminated the licensing changes in the new suite.

You can't buy Office 2013 on DVD or other media. Instead, you have to purchase a key card, which allows you to download the software. But the real kicker is that Office … Read more

The 404 1,210: Where where we survive on ramen and taxes (podcast)

Leaked from today's 404 episode:

- How a movie changed one man's vision forever.

- Google's stock breaks $800 for the first time.

- Report: OfficeMax, Office Depot discussing merger.

- Microsoft moves out of preview.

- Dow 14,000: Stocks near new crest.

- Middle class remains stuck.

- Free File: Do your Federal taxes for free!… Read more

Microsoft quietly raises price of Office for Mac by 17 percent

Microsoft has quietly increased the prices of its Office for Mac 2011 by as much as 17 percent, putting it on price par with Office 2013 for Windows.

The software giant has also quit selling multi-license packages, which allowed customers to purchase multiple copies of the application suite at a discounted rate.

The single-license Office for Mac Home & Student now costs $140, an increase of about 17 percent from the previous price of $120. Meanwhile, Microsoft raised the price of Office for Mac Home & Business, which includes Outlook, to $220, a 10 percent increase over the previous $200 … Read more

SkyDrive users can now share Office documents with anyone

People who need to access your shared MS Office documents via a SkyDrive link should now find the process a bit easier.

Using Microsoft's Office Web Apps or Office 2013, you can create a URL of any document that you store online. You can then e-mail that URL to anyone who needs to view or edit your file. Previously, that process required your collaborators to sign in with a Microsoft account before they could tweak your document. Now that restriction is gone.

Users who receive the URL to your document can click on it to view the file in … Read more

Free LibreOffice office suite beefs up with version 4.0

Fans of LibreOffice will discover a new and improved version with several features typically found only in Microsoft Office.

For those unfamiliar with the product, LibreOffice is an open-source desktop suite, one of several free alternatives to Microsoft Office. The suite includes applications for word processing, spreadsheets, presentations, databases, and drawings.

Released today by the Document Foundation, LibreOffice 4.0 builds on its foundations with a host of new features and fixes.

As just a few examples, users of the Writer word processor can now add comments to entire blocks of text, more easily create different headers and footers for … Read more

Microsoft offers online help to Office 2013 users

Office 2013 users who need a helping hand can find one through Microsoft's Quick Start Guides.

Now available online, the nine guides offer advice on using each of the applications in Office 2013, including Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, Access, OneNote, Project, Visio, and Publisher.

Each guide comes packaged as a PDF that you can download or view online through Adobe Reader.

The guides provide screenshots and descriptions of the new features and layouts in Office 2013. They also clue you in as to what's changed in the new applications compared with previous versions. As with any PDF, you … Read more

How to hide the Ribbon in Office 2013

Starting with Office 2007, Microsoft replaced the standard menu and toolbars with the Ribbon. It was designed to help Office users find commands more easily. Office 2013 still uses the Ribbon, but if you'd rather have more work space or prefer less clutter, you can hide it. In fact, you can choose between three different views: full Ribbon view, tab-only view, and autohide view.

To switch among the different Ribbon views, click on the Ribbon display option button, located between the Help and Minimize buttons.

Autohide Ribbon hides the ribbon at the top, then reappears when you click the … Read more

New PlayStation may debut this month

Friday's CNET Update deciphers the shapes:

Stories from today's tech news roundup:

- Sony expected to unveil a new PlayStation this month -- before E3

- Verizon has new prepaid plans for 3G smartphones

- Nokia is researching a new material called graphene

- HBO Go may be coming to Apple TV

- Amazon beefs up its Prime Instant Video streaming with Downton Abby and is also creating original kids shows

- Netflix premiered the series, "House of Cards," and all 13 episodes are available now

- CNET's Download team highlights free alternatives to the new Office 2013 and Office 365Read more