Word for Mac amiright?
Long-time OSX users who use Microsoft Office just cringed. The lot of you. I know you did.
For those who didn't, here's the back story:
A few years ago Apple released OSX Mavericks. This went well. But if you updated MS Office too, it didn't go well. If there was any trace of Office 2008 left, you got the infamous "updating font menu EXC_BAD_ACCESS" crash.
Immediately on startup.
Open any Office app. Word, Excel, Outlook, doesn't matter. Within three seconds of starting, it crashed. Before you even got past the loading screen.
The solution was moderately simple - delete all traces of Office from
/Library. All the config files, all the everything. You could supposedly get away with just deleting the default template files.
"Fuck it, I'll just use LibreOffice"
And for two years life was good. Well, life was passable. LibreOffice is great and all, and Apple's Pages is awesome, but when you're dealing with publishers and editors and you have tens of people touching the same .doc or .docx file ...
Well, LibreOffice becomes a steaming pile of turd. And slow. Track and show changes always made me feel like I was back in the late 1990's working on a computer with a 166MHz processor and 16MB of memory.
On Tuesday life was no longer good. A file came back from the editors and neither LibreOffice nor Pages would open it. You could click on the images, you knew they were there, but they were invisible.
So I pirated me some MS Office for Mac.
And it crashed. Updating font menu. EXC_BAD_ACCES. Boom.
Deleting all config files from everywhere didn't work. Rebooting my machine didn't work. Nothing worked.
Pirated version. Obviously.
140€ and two hours of deleting absolutely everything yet again later aaaaaaand ... nope.
Crash. EXC_BAD_ACCESS. Boom.
By this point, I had spent hours trying to get Word to work. I have seen every single article and official answer on the internet. Just delete your preferences, all will be fine.
But it wasn't fine!
As a last desperate measure, I created a new user account just to try Word in.
It worked. Without a hitch. Started up. Was fast. Flawless.
An hour of Googling later I came across a forum thread for school system administrators. Just a month old. Who knew people still used forums.
But a solution they did find!
If you run any of Adobe's CS6 software before running any MS Office software, the font cache goes weird and Word will crash.
That's right. When you start a new account. You have to run Office apps before running CS6 apps.
But I deleted
~/Library/Fonts and Word worked! I can edit documents like a human being!
Seriously, Word impressed me. It's smooth, it's fast, it's got a distraction-free mode. It's amazing. Never going back to LibreOffice.
But now I'm too afraid to try running Photoshop.
I write articles with real insight into the career and skills of a modern software engineer. "Raw and honest from the heart!" as one reader described them. Fueled by lessons learned over 20 years of building production code for side-projects, small businesses, and hyper growth startups. Both successful and not.
Subscribe below 👇
Join Swizec's Newsletter and get insightful emails 💌 on mindsets, tactics, and technical skills for your career. Real lessons from building production software. No bullshit.
"Man, love your simple writing! Yours is the only newsletter I open and only blog that I give a fuck to read & scroll till the end. And wow always take away lessons with me. Inspiring! And very relatable. 👌"
Senior Mindset Book
Get promoted, earn a bigger salary, work for top companiesLearn more
Have a burning question that you think I can answer? Hit me up on twitter and I'll do my best.
Who am I and who do I help? I'm Swizec Teller and I turn coders into engineers with "Raw and honest from the heart!" writing. No bullshit. Real insights into the career and skills of a modern software engineer.
Want to become a true senior engineer? Take ownership, have autonomy, and be a force multiplier on your team. The Senior Engineer Mindset ebook can help 👉 swizec.com/senior-mindset. These are the shifts in mindset that unlocked my career.
Curious about Serverless and the modern backend? Check out Serverless Handbook, for frontend engineers 👉 ServerlessHandbook.dev
Want to Stop copy pasting D3 examples and create data visualizations of your own? Learn how to build scalable dataviz React components your whole team can understand with React for Data Visualization
Did someone amazing share this letter with you? Wonderful! You can sign up for my weekly letters for software engineers on their path to greatness, here: swizec.com/blog
By the way, just in case no one has told you it yet today: I love and appreciate you for who you are ❤️