by Jim Summers
Lotus Development Corp.
55 Cambridge Parkway
Cambridge, MA 02142
Many people use Lotus 1-2-3 in some aspect of their trading. These uses run the gamut from
record-keeping and money management to technical analysis. Recently, Lotus finally released versions
2.2. and 3.0. Should traders who use Lotus 1-2-3 upgrade, and to which version? Let me first describe the
major differences between the two versions and then the specific features that led me to choose 3.0.
Bigger and better—but slower?
Many Lotus users may have heard that Lotus 3.0 offers substantially more features than the Lotus 2.2
upgrade, but that it runs slower and requires more hardware. Release 3.0 does require a full 1MB of
RAM. Does it run slower? I made the upgrade to Lotus 3.0. Let me report that I do not perceive any more
slowness with 3.0 than I did with 2.01. When the spreadsheet begins to get large—several hundred rows
of data— it does slow down. But that problem always existed with Lotus. Using a 386 and Desqview, I
just switch to another program and work on something else if the procedure is taking a long time.
To me, the choice between versions depends on how many add-in products you use. Lotus puts many of
the features of the most popular add-in products in the 3.0 version. For example, 3.0 allows to add notes
to cells and ranges (in Noteworthy and NoteIt). You have a variety of fonts to choose from (in AllWays).
You can print sideways if you have a laser printer (in Sideways). Database features are improved along
with the graphics. A keystroke recording feature assists in building macros. Of course, the Lotus version
of these features may not do everything you could with the add-in. Check out the differences before you