Open source software advocates like to point to OpenOffice.org as a viable alternative to Microsoft Office. It can open, create, edit, and save Office-compatible documents including text, spreadsheet, and database files. It might not have every last bell and whistle of Office, but it gets the job done. But OpenOffice.org also has a dirty little secret: It's kind of slow. And apparently, it's getting slower all the time.
OpenOffice.org Ninja ran a battery of tests and found that with each major release, OpenOffice.org has gotten a little slower when performing common tasks like opening, closing, and exporting documents. OpenOffice.org 1.1.5, for example, launches about 40% faster than OpenOffice.org 2.4. That figure holds true whether you're doing a cold start (loading the program for the first time since rebooting your computer) or a warm start (starting the program a second, third, or 15th time).
The developers have certainly been tweaking the open source office suite to improve performance. But they also keep adding new features, which is a good thing. Unfortunately, sometimes those new features slow down program performance. Of course, if you can't wait 20-25 seconds to load your office suite, you could always just buy more RAM, a faster CPU, and umm... Microsoft Office. Or try an online office suite like Google Docs or Zoho, which load faster than OpenOffice.org if you already have a browser window open.