Read about the development of the open source office suite OpenOffice.org. News, developer info, articles, links etc.
Future versions of OpenOffice.org will come bundled with Mozilla's Thunderbird email client and Lightning calendar application. The open source office suite is also planning to revamp its system for building and installing extensions by the end of the month by introducing an extensions system like that of Mozilla's Firefox browser. The process of developing, selecing and managing extensions will be standardised and simplified, according to Charles H. Schulz, the lead of OpenOffice.org's Native Language Confederation.
OOo Writer scores most of its victories in features that make the creation and maintenance of highly formatted or long documents easier. This pattern is not accidental. According to Elizabeth Mathias of Sun Microsystems, the documentation of OpenOffice.org has a long history of being written in Writer itself. As a result, the program's developers had the incentive to include the tools they needed. This legacy continues to give Writer advantages over competitors like Word. That is not to say that Writer is a perfect program. Its interface is wildly inconsistent. Some features, notably cross-references, can most kindly be described as lacking. And in version 2.0, the attempt to imitate Microsoft Word hides several useful features. Yet, despite these shortcomings, OOo Writer is not only as fully developed as Microsoft Word, but often superior in terms of features and stability.
Whether you're moving from Windows to GNU/Linux, or just from the proprietary Microsoft Office to the free software OpenOffice.org suite, one of the challenges you'll face is learning how to use OpenOffice.org Writer effectively if you're used to Microsoft Word. In this article I'll show you around OpenOffice.org Writer, where to find familiar Word tools, and how to customize the interface and preferences to make it a little more Word-friendly. First, don't worry; you won't have much trouble adjusting to OpenOffice.org Writer. The interface isn't terribly different; the menu and toolbar layout are similar to Word's. If you prefer a custom display you'll be much happier with Writer, as it doesn't have a lot of the annoying Word features that people often disable. If the first thing you do when you install Word XP is disable personalized menus and eliminate the superfluous and space-hogging task pane, you'll find it easy and convenient to switch over to Writer. If, on the other hand, you regularly use the task pane, you're going to have to make some adjustments to work efficiently in Writer. While the task pane does not offer any unique functionality, it does make it more convenient to reach certain tools and commands.
Read the article
Open source productivity suite OpenOffice.org may be touted as a viable alternative to Microsoft Office, but there are claims its pace of development and adoption of new features is being stifled by a "monolithic" code base and a developer community still largely controlled by Sun Microsystems. Project contributors speaking at the annual OpenOffice.org miniconference in Canberra this week raised numerous issues, including a lack of independent contributors. OpenOffice.org developer Ken Foskey said the biggest problem with the project is a lack of developers and a code base that is "just too big". "It's 10 million lines of code and takes serious commitment just to compile the thing," Foskey said. "I'm interested in [having] more community developers [involved]," he said, adding they shouldn't "just say 'I want to work on OpenOffice' but focus on a particular part of the project." Sun is still the largest contributor to the project with some 50 developers in Germany, followed by Novell with about 10 contributors, and only four active community developers.
Read the article
StarOffice software is affordable, easy to use, and based on open standards. It offers word processing, spreadsheet, presentation, drawing, and database capabilities. Its familiar interface enables quick productivity and results for the business user, and elegant output for the consumer. StarOffice 8 software increases usability and MS Office compatibility, adds productivity increasing wizards and tools and supports select Lotus and WordPerfect versions. It also introduces a new database engine and front-end tool, easier multilanguage installation and two new scripting languages for developers.
Read more and download
What is new in StarOffice 8 Beta software?
Please help us choose a new splash screen for the upcoming OpenOffice.org 2.0 release. Choose the new splashscreen for the upcoming OpenOffice.org 2.0! You need to be a registered community member to vote. Login, and from your My start page, cast your vote. Voting is open for two weeks and closes 15 February 2004 at 00:00 UTC.
The plan looks like this:
December 2004: OOo 1.9.65 Feature Complete Snapshot (originally planned as 2.0 Beta)
January 2005: OOo2.0 Beta
January 2005 ?? : OOo2.0 changes will be done on separated branch, the trunk (HEAD) will then be used for the next OOo major (3.0 ?) release.
February 2005 ?? : OOo 2.0 rc
March 2005 ?? : OOo 2.0
Remember also to read the OpenOffice.org 2.0 Office Suite Guide to New Features document
The OpenOffice.org suite has positioned itself as a competitive alternative to proprietary products such as Microsoft Office and Corel's WordPerfect Office. One of OpenOffice.org's more advanced features is its ability to access external data sources from within its applications. Information repositories abound in both users' desktops and in a company's IT infrastructure. OpenOffice.org offers access to a whole gamut of data sources, ranging from standard OBDC/JDBC connection capabilities to localized access into text files, spreadsheets, and address books. The real highlight in being able to connect from OOo into a data source lies in its robust GUI for consulting and performing comprehensive searches. Users can make SQL-based queries or simple sort/filter searches and use the retrieved information within text documents or spreadsheets.
Den alternative kontorpakke OpenOffice er lige så nem at bruge som Microsofts udbredte Office-pakke. Det konkluderer en dansk brugerundersøgelse i forbindelse med rapporten om brugen af open source-kontorpakker i det offentlige. Det vil tilsyneladende ikke volde brugerne de store problemer, hvis hele den offentlige forvaltning gik fra Microsofts kontorpakke Office og over til at bruge den alternative OpenOffice. Ikke nok med at det offentlige kunne spare licensudgifterne, brugerne ville i det daglige også ganske smertefrit vænne sig til den nye kontorpakke. Det konkluderer den danske cand.mag Jacob Salmon i en brugerundersøgelse af overgangen mellem de to kontorpakker.
Læs nyheden her
Læs hele rapporten i PDF
OpenOffice.org just release yes another developer build of the OpenOffice.org 2.0 line. Build 1.9.m65 (680_m65).
- New First Start Wizard
- New toolbar
and loads or other stuff
Snapshot builds are developers builds and will be released every two weeks. They are showing the progress on the way towards OpenOffice.org 2.0.
Once upon a time, organizations had thousands of sheets of letterhead prepared by a commercial printer. These letterhead pages were then fed through a typewriter or, later, through a printer attached to a computer. Some organizations still do this, especially if they want colors, embossed text, or other fancy touches. But many smaller companies, and most individuals, now are very likely to print the letterhead and the letter at the same time, using a color laser or inkjet printer. This article describes how to create and use a letterhead with OpenOffice.org. Along the way you'll learn how to use a wizard, templates, styles, and even a field or two. The principles described apply to many other documents as well, so even if you don't need a letterhead, you should find this exercise useful.
By now, anyone who has researched replacing Microsoft Office with OpenOffice.org knows that Writer is an acceptable, even superior substitute for Word. But word processing is only part of what the average user needs in an office program. What if you need to design a slide show in OOo Impress? Coming from PowerPoint, what can you expect? For starters, expect to feel nearly at home. Like the rest of OpenOffice.org, Impress is designed for an easy transition from Microsoft Office. Most of the same tools are available as in PowerPoint, and in the same places. This similarity means that, for most people, learning Impress is quicker than learning, for example, KPresenter. You may notice a slight change in name, and one or two features may be in different places, but you can count on locating basic functions without major problems. Now and then you may need to hunt for a feature, but if you assume that it's around somewhere, you'll be right more often than not.
Det danske nyhedsbrev om OpenOffice.org skriver:
I dag udgiver vi Dansk OpenOffice.org 1.1.3. Denne udgivelse er en mindre opdatering og indeholder fejlrettelser. Derudover har du nu også mulighed for at hente en brugervenlig installationspakke for Dansk OpenOffice.org til Windows.
Du kan som altid hente Dansk OpenOffice.org fra: http://da.openoffice.org/
When an OpenOffice.org file is browsed in Mozilla, the display mode is like that of text/plain mime type, which is not the desired mode. On Windows, OpenOffice.org has already provided a plug-in for Internet Explorer (IE), which enables IE to embed an OpenOffice.org window to display the OpenOffice.org file, while this kind of support is missing for Mozilla. By providing a Mozilla plug-in, OpenOffice.org files can be displayed inside the Mozilla window just as the same way it is been browsed in the IE.
This is currently only available in the 2.0 developer release (1.9.54 currently). To enable it you have to go to the Options in OpenOffice.org. Then choose Internet and Mozilla Plug-in and enable it.
Around the time OpenOffice.org 1.1 RC was released, I was migrating a small company from Corel WordPerfect to OpenOffice.org. OpenOffice.org by itself does not support reading or writing WordPerfect files, but a tool called wpd2sxw can convert WordPerfect files to OpenOffice.org format (SXW). After conversion with wpd2sxw, which was rather good but had problems with some formatting features, I applied macros to documents based on different templates to make more than 2,000 converted documents look very similar to original WordPerfect files they were generated from. This article presents some macro "building blocks" you can use to modify a document's formatting or to generate well-formatted documents from plain text files.
Read the article
Today a site called LinuxElectrons posted a story categorizing Sun Microsystems' recent 10k filing as "probably as close as Microsoft can legally get to buying OpenOffice.org." Sun, however, strongly disagrees with this characterization and listed several clarifications for us. In short, it's just not true. The 10K filing, submitted as the result of a landmark, $1.6 billion agreement last April Fool's Day between the two companies, lists three exhibits that deal specifically with the highly publicized Microsoft settlement agreement. The meat of the document states that Microsoft reserves the right to pursue patent infringement claims against OpenOffice.org, but allows for indemnification against such claims against StarOffice. StarOffice is a commercial office suite sold by Sun that is based on the free OpenOffice.org project.
Sun denies report that it is 'selling out' OpenOffice
Miljøministeriet har som den hidtil mest markante offentlige institution valgt at droppe Microsoft. Afløseren hedder Open Office. Beslutningen er truffet efter benhårde forretningsmæssige overvejelser. Benhårde forretningsmæssige overvejelser ligger til grund for Miljøministeriets principbeslutning om at droppe licensbetalingerne til Microsoft og gå open source-vejen. Besparelsen er i et konservativt skøn opgjort til 3,6 millioner kroner over tre år. Vores analyser viser, at der er en god business case for at skifte til Open Office, selv om det naturligvis ikke er gratis, og vi også skal bidrage til fællesskabet. Det, der interesserer mig, er forretning. For os handler det her ikke om religion, siger Henrik Studsgaard, direktør for ministeriets Center for Koncernforvaltning.
New features amonst others are:
- OASIS Open Office file format as default file format
- New toolbar concept and design
- Automatic Java Configuration
- Increased row limit to 65k rows in Calc
- New database application (bug and spec)
Corporations and home users have different needs when acquiring a standard suite of productivity software--for example, a word processor; spreadsheet; and database, drawing and presentation software. A company typically buys hundreds or even thousands of copies at one shot, at a steep discount, and has to buy something that works for everyone--the highest--rather than lowest-common denominator...
There are times when you need to perform some task over and over, or when a task is complex enough that doing it manually makes it hard to get it right. OpenOffice.org macros allow you to save a sequence of operations with a single name so you can do the same thing repeatedly. Automation is a first cousin to macros. It lets another application control OOo and make things happen without user intervention.
In school, you probably were taught that a paragraph is the development of a complete thought. That is a contents-based definition. In OpenOffice.org or any other word processor, a paragraph also has a format definition: the contents of the document from the mouse cursor's position when you begin to type to the place where you either press the Enter key or end the document. Even if you type only a title, when you press the Enter key, you have ended one paragraph and started another. This definition may seem obvious to experienced computer users. It is worth mentioning, however, because it stresses the importance of paragraphs in document design. Because aragraphs are so common in word processor documents, and because they are so well-defined, paragraphs probably are the most important elements in document design. In other word processors, they even can compensate partly for the inability to design pages. Paragraphs in Writer don't have to work so hard, because page styles do part of the work of formatting. Yet, if anything, Writer has even more settings for paragraph styles than do most other word processors. In fact, some posters to the OpenOffice.org user's list actually have complained about the number of choices available. Fortunately, most of these choices have reasonable defaults and can be ignored until needed.
Read the article
Office 2003 vs. OpenOffice.Org
In recent years, open-source alternatives to Office have matured to the point where IT managers are beginning to investigate the viability of moving from the Microsoft Corp. suite to a license-free alternative. So when eWEEK Corporate Partner Ed Benincasa shared his desire to perform a user-based comparison between the OpenOffice.org project's OpenOffice.org suite and Microsoft's Office 2003, we saw a perfect opportunity to compare the suites under real-world conditions.
Open Source a Better Fit in Small Shops
eWEEK Labs often hears IT managers express a desire to loosen Microsoft Corp.'s grip on the office productivity market by deploying alternative office suites. The continuing maturation of open-source office applications, along with the fact that these applications have no licensing fees, makes such a move increasingly attractive-but not for all companies.
The OpenOffice.orgSchools Project has a new mascot, drawn by sixteen-year old Andrea Maggioni of Italy. Playing on our logo's seagulls and the shorthand of OpenOffice.org, OOo, the picture shows a happy seagull holding a fish. Of the dozens submitted, Andrea's cheerful picture perfectly captures the fun and optimism of OpenOffice.org. Congratulations, Andrea!
This page will describe how you can use some of Gnome's gtk2 icons with OpenOffice.org 1.1 instead of the default Icons. Currently, OpenOffice.org has a few limitations in its themeing capabilities, which should be addressed in it's next release.
Fresh off a major Linux desktop win in China, Sun Microsystems has found a PC friend closer to home with AOL now piloting a program to ship sub-$300 desktops running StarOffice.
DicOOo will be included in future ISO images. DicOOo is a dictionaries installer written in OOobasic under LGPL. It's multiplateform (Windows, Linux, Solaris, Mac), has two level of installation (single user, multi-users), support all version of OOo and is self update. It's actually distributed as a sxw file on mirrors. http://ftp.club-internet.fr/pub/OpenOffice/contrib/dictionaries/dicooo/
OpenOffice.org Newsletter Issue 5 is out there. Highlights in the newsletter:
- StarOffice 7 among the top 10 software products on Amazon.de
- More very good reviews for StarOffice 7 and OpenOffice.org
- Denmark urges government support for open source
- Vietnam embracing open-source products
and much more...
The development of OpenOffice.org continues after the 1.1.0 release. Now there's a new developer release available. This release is eventually gonna be 1.1.1.
The 680m11 (build 680 milestone 11) can be downloaded from different mirror sites fx ftp.belnet.be and ftp.join.uni-muenster.de
Release notes and bug fixes for this release can be found here.
Den danske udgave af OpenOffice.org 1.1 er udgivet!
Hvis du vil hjælpe til at oversætte hjælpefilerne i OpenOffice.org kan du melde dig her.
A denial-of-service attack against the OpenOffice.org office suite (when it is running with remote access enabled) has been reported. In the report, the attacker connects to a port that OpenOffice.org opens when it is started with the command line soffice "-accept=socket, host=<ip>, port=8100;" and sends to the port a series of characters. Reportedly, after receiving the series of characters, OpenOffice.org then crashes and opens its error report dialog window.
Sun Microsystems Inc.'s StarOffice 7 productivity suite is a capable cross-platform alternative to Microsoft Corp.'s Office that comes at a price too attractive for enterprises to ignore.
Sun's StarOffice 7 has the interface familiarity and file-format compatibility that enable it to coexist with Microsoft's Office. Add to that great cross-platform support, both in file formats and in operating systems, and a cost that starts at $79 a copy, and StarOffice may manage to displace Microsoft Office at many companies.
OpenOffice.org 1.1 can be downloaded now. It represents months of testing, improvement, innovation. There is no other office suite like it, either in terms of features or code. And it's free. Right now, it's only availble in English. Different languages will be ready shortly.
- Press release
Also remember to get the Dictionary Installer which makes it easier to install spell checker dictionaries.
StarOffice 7 Office Suite Released
StarOffice 7 Office Suite is the world's leading office productivity suite on Linux and the Solaris OS, and the leading alternative office suite on Windows. StarOffice 7 software adds functionality to enable export to PDF, and to the Macromedia Flash format. It also includes the new StarOffice Configuration Manager, a macro recorder, and support for assistive technologies, as well as for complex text layouts.
What's new PDF
Currently the installation of the OpenOffice.org suite is done by running the setup application, which provides a cross platform graphical user interface that wizards the user through all phases of the setup rocess. To make OpenOffice.org a well behaved citizen on your harddisk we want the systems native installer to become the default way to install, modify, or uninstall OpenOffice.org on your computer. Just like any other package you install. These could be Microsoft Installer (MSI) on Windows platforms, RedHat Package Manager (RPM) packages on Linux and Solaris Packages (PKG) on Solaris.
Read the entire posting.
For those interested in OpenOffice.org you can now join the dicussions in newsgroups. In the past the only way used to be mailing lists. I hate mailing lists. I love newsgroups.
The news server is called news.gmane.org and you can see all the available newsgroups.
This document provides a comprehensive, high-level overview of concepts for features in the next release of StarOffice / OpenOffice.org (SO/OOo) currently in the planning phase.
- Lower cost of interoperability with Microsoft Office
- Lower cost of retraining
- Better Performance
- General usability improvements
- Enhanced programmability
- Better integration into desktop systems
Read more about the OpenOffice.org codelines.
"Just to be perfectly clear, this is an MS Exchange replacement," said Gary Federick, leader of the OpenOffice.org Groupware Project. "OGo is important because it's the missing link in the open source software stack. It's the end of a decade-long effort to map all the key infrastructure and standard desktop applications to free software. OGo offers users a free solution for collaboration and document management that, despite being free of charge, will far surpass the quality and level of collaboration found on Windows through integration of MS Office, Exchange Server and Sharepoint. Today marks the completion of the 'Open Stack.'"
Been reading this interesting interview:
Interview with Ximian's Nat Friedman
9. Do you have any plans to move to the Gecko HTML rendering engine for Evolution or are you going to continue to improve and maintain gtkhtml?
Nat Friedman: When we started developing Evolution, Gecko was incomplete and way too big, and especially ill-suited for editing HTML, which we needed for the mail composer. That is why we needed to write our own HTML widget.
Gecko has matured a lot since then, but of course so has GtkHTML (it uses Pango now, and can edit tables and so on). I think there is still a need for a lightweight HTML widget that does all the things you need for mail, but we'd certainly accept patches to use Gecko in Evolution. It would be nice not to have to maintain an HTML widget, but right now that doesn't seem plausible. Maybe someday.
8. What changes have you made to OpenOffice.org when compared to its vanilla version?
Nat Friedman: We've done about six months of heavy development on OOo, all focused on improving consistency across the desktop and compatibility with Microsoft documents.
We don't _want_ to have any delta against the upstream OOo tree, so we're going to be working to get all of those changes upstream now that this release is done.
Dont know what to do in your weekend?
Well, what about getting of 100% free office suite that has the same features as Microsoft Office and a lot more!
I've been running OpenOffice.org for almost 1 year now and never encountered a Microsoft Office document that OpenOffice.org couldn't open. I love it. Now I dont even have Microsoft Office installed anymore.
Get OpenOffice.org 1.1 Beta2 here:
OpenOffice.org 1.1 Beta2
Get the latest development version here:
Microsoft har valgt at give folkeskolelærerne en CD med Microsoft Office
XP. Men Microsofts gave skal beskattes.
Dette vil OpenSource verden ikke lade stå til og kan derfor tilbyde alle
folkeskolelærere (og alle andre) kontorpakken OpenOffice.org gratis.
I modsætning til Microsofts gave skal man med OpenOffice.org-CD'en være
opmærksom på at:
- Programmet ikke er personligt og gerne må overdrages til andre
- Programmet gerne må bruges til kommercielt brug
- Programmets licens er gældende til alle de PC'er man ønsker
- Programmet ikke skal aktiveres for at kunne bruges
- Programmet ikke skal opgives på selvangivelsen
- Programmet frit må kopieres og gives til enhver
CD'en indeholder både OpenOffice til Microsoft Windows såvel som til Linux
og koster kr. 10 pr CD + kr. 25 for porto og ekspedition. Prisen dækker kun medie, porto og ekspeditionsgebyr.
Du kan også få OpenOffice pakken ganske gratis, hvis du selv vil downloade pakken. Det kan du gøre her.
Læs mere om den danske OpenOffice udgave her.
OpenOffice.org 1.1beta is ready for immediate download. It is a stable beta but still has bugs. This release represents a significant advance of the application and incorporates the features and changes introduced with the developer builds of the last year. These include:
- Many new import/export formats such as PDF, Macromedia Flash, DocBook, several PDA Office file formats, flat XML and XHTML
- Support for Complex Text Layout (CTL) and languages such as Thai, Hindi, Arabic, Hebrew
Download it here
OpenOffice is an international office suite that will run on all major platforms and provide access to all functionality and data through open-component based APIs and an XML-based file format.
A version milestone has been released of Open Office:
OpenOffice is a international office suite that will run on all major platforms and provide access to all functionality and data through open-component based APIs and an XML-based file format.
Microsoft Office be gone!