vrijdag 15 april 2011

Oracle handing OpenOffice.org over to community

Today, April 15, Oracle announced that they will follow a different route with OpenOffice.org. Oracle no longer looks at it as a commercial product, but will hand it all over to a community, a foundation or something like that. An organisation where all parties feel comfortable. This news can be read from this article, where Chief Architect Edward Screven is cited.
On The Register I read an analysis, that was advised to me by 'an anonymus source' as 'interesting'.

So where will Oracle find a place for OpenOffice.org? Since September 28 2010 there is The Document Foundation, where a large part of the former OpenOffice.org community joined to continue working on the product in a free project, in an independent organisation. Oracle did not want to join by then - therefore now The Document Foundation releases the program LibreOffice, and not OpenOffice.org...
Then today Oracles remarkable change in course. This is a big step forward in the direction that I expressed as a wish at the time that The Document Foundation started: that the two paths will merge again. And look, as per today Oracle searches a group, a community, that does want to give a home to OpenOffice.org. Me thinks that Oracle will get a warm welcome from The Document Foundation :-)

There is another positive side with this news. It will clear the route for IBM, having a contract with Sun/Oracle about OpenOffice.org and the thereon based Lotus Symphony, to give its full commitment to the future development in a free community.
Thus OpenOffice.org, ehh LibreOffice, really can get the strong support of many large companies, bundling their mutual interests, more that fighting about their differences. An excellent basis for all taking place around web-office, tablets, smart-phones and a place where (free) software-developers with all their skills and interests will feel really fine.

vrijdag 1 april 2011

Hackers-event at NoiV congress

Last weeks Thursday, March 24, five Dutch LibreOffice hackers met for a special event: we were invited at the yearly congress of the NoiV – a Dutch governmental institute for the adoption of open standards and open source. We were there to show how developing open source works. All five of us have widely varying experience and skills. Speaking for myself, I am not really the most experienced C++ developer, far from that, but still could do useful work during the event and helping understanding features etc.
Even more: our different backgrounds definitely helped us, to have a very interesting and useful day. Not only did we some good work on some interesting and useful code: we also learned a lot of each others skills, of the work itself, and as bonus were able to explain other people at the congress the suite and our work.
So first some pictures:
(see pictures one and two from Paul Ridderhof on flickr).

Pieces of code we worked on and had a look at were
- toggle function for Notes in Writer (easy hack) but part of it turned out to be far less easy than expected..);
- precision of decimals on the import of a cvs file;
- color of footnote separator (explained my previous blog) Whyle working on it, we found out that the feature was committed to the master just four days earlier ;-) );
- more than the 12 default colours for diagrams (question on the LibreOffice users-list). Thanks to Rob, this will be possible from LibreOffice 3.4 onward! See the dev-list and this screen shot:

Just as the people that visited our event positive, so were we!
We decided to have another event organized somewhere the next months. And also to join T-Dose next Autumn in Eindhoven. Pls stay tuned, or read our Dutch discussion-list :-)