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Re: Excell to PSPP direct?

From: ftr
Subject: Re: Excell to PSPP direct?
Date: Fri, 14 Feb 2014 17:31:53 +0100
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 6.0; rv:24.0) Gecko/20100101 Thunderbird/24.3.0

Are there any ideas to get a direct export in Libre/OpenOffice format ?

On 14/02/2014 16:38, Thambu David wrote:
Thanks alan!
I shall give Satya N some time to settle down-mean time i shall try Libre 

From: Alan Mead address@hidden
Sent: Friday, February 14, 2014 9:12 PM
To: address@hidden; Thambu David
Subject: Re: Excell to PSPP direct?


What you're asking is not practical and perhaps impossible. Microsoft's
Office formats are extremely complex. I don't know how SPSS reads them
but I know it's very brittle. In the past, when I have saved data as an
.XLS file using LibreOffice, SPSS has failed to import it.  Also, Office
2010 has support for the Open Document Format that LibreOffice uses but
when Word tries to open the .ODT files I create using LibreOffice, it
reports them as "damaged" and needs to "recover" the file to open it.

If Microsoft and SPSS cannot handle these formats properly, it seems
impractical to hope that a small, open-source project could possible
solve these problems.

I second John's reply. I have LibreOffice and MS Office 2010 installed
and I can use LibreOffice for virtually all the tasks I need to do.
LibreOffice, BTW, is far superior in my experience in exporting CSV.  It
allows you to pick the character encoding, the delimiter, and the
quoting. The nice thing about picking the encoding is it the language is
English (i.e., if the data can be represented by ASCII) then I pick that
and things like smartquotes are automatically converted.  When I export
CSV from Excel, I get an unholy mess of quoted and non-quoted data in
whatever encoding Excel chooses.

One other suggestion, why not teach statistics entirely in
Excel/LibreOffice Calc? That's what many business schools do in the US.
Or, failing that, why not use SPSS/PSPP for all your needs? They're
basically advanced spreadsheets where you put the equations into syntax
instead of into the cells.

I do have a final suggestion that more directly addresses your question.
I think you just have matters backwards.  Microsoft is a
multi-multi-multi-billion-dollar company with billions of dollars in
reserves and literally an army of developers. If Microsoft decided to
make it easy for third parties to read their formats, it would be
practically feasible for them to do so.  I suggest that you contact
Microsoft and ask that they make their formats more interoperable or
release open-source libraries for reading their file formats.  The new
CEO's name is Satya Nadella. I suggest you contact him directly.


On 2/14/2014 8:00 AM, Thambu David wrote:
Dear All
Is it possible for PSPP to directly import files from Excell without making 
them CSV-often this does not seem v straightforward
It would make implementing this as a SPSS alternate much easier
Most students and faculty are looking for a legal free alternate,but this is 
one area of difficulty
I hope the plan for this year could include this (if possible) being added to 
the to-do list
Thanks in advance

Dr Thambu David S
Professor and Head
Medicine Unit 2
Christian Medical College, Vellore
632004, India

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Alan D. Mead, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Industrial and Organizational Psychology Program
Department of Psychology
Lewis College of Human Sciences
Illinois Institute of Technology
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Chicago IL 60616

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