We all had that friend. That guy who never had Microsoft Office. That guy was trying to give you documents that were in Microsoft Works format. As a side, how did Microsoft make their budget word processor completely incompatible with just about any other word processor on the planet, including WORD?
Anyhow. You would send this guy a document, and he'd ask for it again in Rich Text.
Well, your troubles are over. Open Office is the free MS alternative. It not only handles word processing but spreadsheets, presentations, databases, drawing and more.
And other free office programs do that - but this one is COMPATIBLE with EVERYTHING. Including Microsoft Office's Excel, Word, Powerpoint--- and it's FREE.
Oh and it's got a bunch of features that MS Office DOESN'T have! Like the ability to turn ANY document into a PDF. Like the ability to turn a presentation slideshow into a flash animation.
And the ability to not charge you anything to own it. To be honest, other than companies, I don't know anyone who has actually paid the $400 US for MS office.... but embrace legality with OpenOffice - it's available for Windows, Linux and Mac! Go Nuts, for free.