Once I got my shipping copy of Microsoft Project Standard 2002 running (the install takes time), I appreciated how quickly I could set up a project plan and specify options. The program retains all of Project 2000's options and offers new Project Guide help tools.
The Project Guide wizards (which appear in a left-side window pane) are all business: Concise instructions usher you through defining a project, listing tasks, setting deadlines, specifying workers and associated costs, choosing calendar templates, and saving a baseline version of the project plan. You can import task lists from Microsoft Outlook or save multiple baseline estimates for any project.
Project 2002 tracks the way changes to one aspect of a project affect another, slices and dices all the data, and draws Gantt charts and other graphics for quick e-mail updates or formal presentations.
At $599, this software is not for individuals tracking everyday work. Instead, corporate workgroups or well-heeled small businesses will benefit. From the September 2002 issue of PC World magazine