| It's somewhat silly, not completely. In some cases, you just can't do
| the job without TeX. At one firm where I'm doing some consulting work,
| I was approached by the accountant - a Polish lady - about how she can
| obtain the all of the special characters and accents for writing
| letters to family and friends overseas. Microsoft Word doesn't offer a
| satisfactory solution at all, whereas TeX can do everything. Word
| requires that you change the character set (which isn't always big
| enough to hold all the necessary combination), whereas TeX can
| synthesize all kinds of accents and stick them onto any character you
| want. For instance, she requires the cedilla accent (the little
| squiggle that the French use in the word Francais under the 'c') to be
| used with a whole bunch of capital letters, such as E. In TeX, you
| just type "\c E", and there it is.
Sorry to intervene in a possibly unmentionable way, but WordPerfect
allows a lot of scope in this respect (having not only the cedilla
but also the true ogonek or "Polish Hook", and many other diacritics).
There are various ways to combine an accent with a character. You can
either do this by key-strokes for occasional use, or write a macro
(which could be stored as a "Keyboard macro" if you decided, for instance,
to set up a special Polish keybaoard). Plus, you have about a 50 percent
chance to see your composed character on the screen.
If it's a choice between Word and TeX for this kind of thing, I would
choose WordPerfect (if you'll pardon the logic).
However, if it's a choice between WordPerfect and TeX, I'd choose troff
(if you know your way round the ms macros, you can set up anything your
printer can print). You could type Kazimir's example as \(,E for example,
once you had defined ",E" as a character object.
Don't ask me about Word.