The latest Pages, Keynote and Numbers applications violate a core principle of good computer-human interface design.
The new interface design increases the time, motion, and hassle associated with getting work done. It now takes more thought, hand motions, mouse clicks, and eye movements to accomplish the same task than with the prior versions.
That adds up to a whole lot of lost productivity day in and day out. As business users, while the new versions may be free, the total "cost of ownership" is far too high for us.
Consider the loss of the floating tool pallet.
The floating pallet or "inspector" was an innovation. The new fixed "inspector" at the right-hand of the screen is not.
A well designed pallet not only reduces the time, motion, and hassle associated with getting work done. It also allows one to see the relationship in *real-time* between cause & effect in a single clear line of sight; between acting upon an object (text, table, chart, etc) and the results of such action.
With the new fixed inspector, on a 27" Mac screen, one's eyes must move about 12" to the right to select the tool, and then move 12" or more to the left, to see the results of any such action. One must constantly take one's sight off the "ball."
The floating pallet obviates this problem. That is why, as an invention, it was so useful. That is partly why we started to migrate our work from Powerpoint to Keynote, about 10 years ago, and later from Excel and Word to Numbers and Pages.
Apple's novel implementation of dynamic floating pallets increased our productivity over the sort of semi-static floating pallets that characterized Microsoft Office (and still do).
Needless to say, we are now migrating back to the prior iWork version to stem the productivity loss. Whether we give up on Apple and return to the Microsoft fold remains to be seen.
While the new applications may be free, the total "cost of ownership" is far too high for us.
A Long-Time Loyal Business User