Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Open Source Software Upgrades IT Technology Apache

Apache OpenOffice 4.0 Released With Major New Features 238

Posted by timothy
from the so-many-millions-of-dollars-worth-of-good dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Still the most popular open source office suite, Apache OpenOffice 4 has been released, with many new enhancements and a new sidebar, based on IBM Symphony's implementation but with many improvements. The code still has comments in German but as long as real new features keep coming and can be shared with other office suites no one is complaining." The sidebar mentioned brings frequently used controls down and beside the actual area of a word-processing doc, say, which makes some sense given how wide many displays have become. This release comes with some major improvements to graphics handling, too; anti-aliasing makes for smoother bitmaps. In conjunction with this release, SourceForge (also under the Slashdot Media umbrella) has announced the launch of an extensions collection for OO. Extensions mean that Open Office can gain capabilities from outside contributors, rather than being wrapped up in large, all-or-nothing updates. You can download the latest version of Apache OpenOffice here.
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Apache OpenOffice 4.0 Released With Major New Features

Comments Filter:
  • IBM Open Source (Score:2, Insightful)

    For IBM, Open Source == Out Sourcing.
    Cheaper than employing programmers in faraway places is to get them to volunteer for free to maintain their code.

    Not new really... They have been doing that for years.

    • Re:IBM Open Source (Score:5, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday July 23, 2013 @05:41PM (#44365609)

      I can't let bullshit like that stand.

      IBM specifically dedicates a group of developers to every project they open source, as far as I can tell.

      For OpenOffice, this is even mentioned in the Wikipedia article [wikipedia.org]:

      The developer pool for the Apache project was seeded by IBM employees, who continue to do the majority of the development.

      And yes, I checked the references. The statement is correct.

      You are an asshole, for lying like that. BOOO!

  • by mwvdlee (775178) on Tuesday July 23, 2013 @02:35PM (#44363633) Homepage

    I'm a Dutchman, my native language is dutch, and I use english for all comments because using my native language seems to screw with the industry-standard english terminology in programming.
    Anybody here who comments his/her code in his native language? How do you deal with the jargon and what are the benefits of using your native language, apart from being able to type TL;DR-size comments with ease?

    • by K. S. Kyosuke (729550) on Tuesday July 23, 2013 @02:49PM (#44363795)

      I'm a Dutchman, my native language is dutch, and I use english for all comments because using my native language seems to screw with the industry-standard english terminology in programming.

      It also makes your programs faster. This is one of the reasons why OpenOffice is so slow - source [slashdot.org]. It's inexcusable that they haven't translated the comments yet.

    • by slartibartfastatp (613727) on Tuesday July 23, 2013 @03:00PM (#44363897) Journal

      My team code (variables, class and method names) and comment in portuguese. I found that not many programmers down here really know english, so our first attempts with english commentary yielded crappy, useless, unreadable comments. Even comments in our native language sometimes can be confusing, so I think that adding a extra layer of noise wouldn't do it.

      • by AuMatar (183847)

        That's fine, so long as you're writing software where the code won't be shared outside of your company. If you're writing for a US based company or likely to sell access to the code, you'll find it easier if its all on a common language.

        • 7 years ago, when the project started, we were focusing on Latin America community (spanish speakers can read portuguese and vice versa), so I decided to code in portuguese. Only a few people from Brasil decided to contribute to the project since then, so I guess the language choice actually helped those contributors.

          Not that this choice doesn't look strange; we code in CakePHP, which is based on RoR, that specify that model names are plural, table names are singular, or whatever. We turn the pluralization

          • by AuMatar (183847)

            Hmm, I will add 1 more rule- if you're posting code on a site like stackoverflow, translating to english is helpful. I don't refuse to help code in foreign languages, but I find it difficult to understand large blocks of it and will likely give up quicker. English is best there due to it being the most common language.

    • by gaspyy (514539)

      Romanian here. Everyone worth their salt here writes code, comments and docs in English. I have my own pet project [sparkchess.com] where I'm basically the only one who ever needs to see the code, yet everything is in English. Considering that the programming language has English keywords (if, while, class, etc) and the text strings are in English too, it's simpler for me to keep everything consistent rather than to make any mental switch.

    • by tibit (1762298)

      I used to comment my code in my native language up to maybe early high school. I did it subsequently on a project or two that were meant to be maintained by people who mostly didn't speak English. I can't comprehend anyone commenting code in anything but English.

    • by munch117 (214551)

      Anybody here who comments his/her code in his native language?

      I do. 100% variable names and comments in my native language. Unless I have concrete plans to share the code with the world, in that case I go for 100% English.

      How do you deal with the jargon and what are the benefits of using your native language, apart from being able to type TL;DR-size comments with ease?

      It's a big advantage that third-party libraries and my own code use different languages. It means my code and other code stands apart, without any conscious effort needed, which is valuable because what I do with it is so very different: my own code is mallable and subject to refactorings, whereas the names in third-party libraries are fixed externa

  • Play Nice (Score:5, Insightful)

    by fermion (181285) on Tuesday July 23, 2013 @02:37PM (#44363657) Homepage Journal
    Before we all start cat fighting, remember that 12 years ago Sun gave us a office application that competed well with MS. I have used it for all that time, and have been able to what I most of what I need to much better and reliably then with MS Office. I supplement it with Apple stuff and lately with Google Docs, which is not as good.

    Yes a few years ago some who did not like OO.org structure created an alternative which some prefer, and there is an issue with Oracle buying OO.org, but now Apache has it.

    So before we start modded up the MS shills who want to promote the OO.org versus Libreoffice battle, remember that OSS is about choice, and MS is about the destruction of choice.

    Thanks to all the people who have put work into OO.org. It is very appreciated. I have downloaded the new version and will look at it as I need it.

    • Re:Play Nice (Score:5, Informative)

      by Sique (173459) on Tuesday July 23, 2013 @02:57PM (#44363871) Homepage
      Actually, the story is somewhat longer and started with Star Division, a Hamburg (Germany) based company, who offered a wordprocessor in the 1980ies for 150 DM in Germany, when the comparable Microsoft Word was about 800 DM or more. StarWriter was build into a whole office suite until 1995, when it got renamed in StarOffice. In 1999, Sun Microsystems bought Star Division, and in 2002 opened the code and created OpenOffice. Completed with some non-open licensed parts (like an RDBMS; if I remember correctly, StarOffice was using ADABAS from Software AG, later the derivate SAP DB), OpenOffice was sold as StarOffice by Sun Microsoft until 2010.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday July 23, 2013 @02:51PM (#44363815)

    LibreOffice 4.1 is out later this week and they already imported all the bug fixes from Apache Office. According to https://www.libreoffice.org/download/4-1-new-features-and-fixes/ they picked up at least these improvements:
    "A very large number of bugs have been fixed at an estimate of around 3000 bugs, of which 400 came from authors with apache.org mail addresses."
    and
    "Sidebar (Apache OpenOffice/IBM Symphony) with resizeable layout (LibreOffice team)"

    I wonder when apache office will merge fully with LibreOffice.

    • by Luciano Moretti (2887109) on Tuesday July 23, 2013 @04:13PM (#44364725)

      It won't. At this point the codebases have incompatible licensing. LibreOffice can continue to pull in code from OpenOffice, but OpenOffice cannot pull back in code from LibreOffice.

      As such, LibreOffice will likely continue to have major releases a week after OpenOffice, where all the good stuff from OpenOffice will get pulled in, but none of the good stuff from LibreOffice will be ported to OpenOffice.

      • by Palestrina (715471) * on Tuesday July 23, 2013 @04:38PM (#44364981) Homepage

        Actually, this is not quite true. There are a good number of contributors who are happy to work with both projects. They don't care about the license bullshit. They contribute equally to both projects. So there is a fair amount of code making it back into AOO from LibreOffice.

        Also, some supports of free office software, like the Open Source Business Alliance (OSBA) which sponsored much of the OOXML improvements in LibreOffice, have put a clause in their contracts that requires the code produced to be made under the Apache License, even when the code is targeted to LibreOffice. So AOO will have access to that work as well.

        Of course, these are just small improvements to an overall climate of inefficiency. And the inefficiency goes in both directions. To the extent LO does not contribute patches upstream they are creating a deferred merge expense that will increase over time, each time they try to merge features down from AOO.

        • by jensend (71114) on Tuesday July 23, 2013 @05:20PM (#44365403)

          There might have been a lot of people who were willing to dual-license most of their contributions, but you turned a *lot* of them off with your toxic attitude and the juvenile bullcrap you have been spewing for the last several years on mailing lists and fora. Now, years after flaming potential collaborators enough that they were unwilling to put up with you, you point to a token few dual-licensers as a resounding success.

          • I'll take your diversion to ad hominem attacks as a concession that my rebuttal of your claim is valid and you have no actual response.

            • by jensend (71114)

              What rebuttal of what claim? Do you have me confused with someone else? I made no claims prior to what you're characterizing as an "ad hominem attack."

              Ad hominem is only fallacious when it's an irrelevancy. In a discussion of community and contributions, the fact that you have turned many people away from the OpenOffice community with your behavior is acutely relevant.

              • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

                by Palestrina (715471) *

                You were either attempting to argue against my claim that there were contributions from LibreOffice coming back into Apache OpenOffice, in an ad hominen attack. Or you were merely interjecting irrelevancies. I'm willing to accept that you were merely being irrelevant. In any case you never bothered to substantiate *any* of your claims so I waste no time rebutting them.

    • by asmkm22 (1902712)

      I wonder when LIbreOffice will finally merge back with OpenOffice. Especially considering how much they are just copy/pasting features and bug fixes. I still think the OpenOffice name has a hell of a lot more recognition than LibreOffice, which doesn't exactly roll off the tongue, and is only highlighting how difficult it can be for a business to switch to open source options when questions like "what's the difference between LibreOffice and OpenOffice" can't easily be answered for the people in charge of

  • Sidebar! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by whoever57 (658626) on Tuesday July 23, 2013 @02:52PM (#44363821) Journal
    Finally, somthing that makes sense on 16x9 monitors, instead of the idiotic idea of taking up vertical space in a "ribbon"
  • by sl4shd0rk (755837) on Tuesday July 23, 2013 @03:01PM (#44363901)

    *Two* open source offerings competing against each other instead of against Microsoft.

  • Anyone else remember Applixware? I remember buying a shrink-wrapped copy in CompUSA in their Linux section back in the day.

  • by JImbob0i0 (1202835) on Tuesday July 23, 2013 @03:19PM (#44364121)

    Well since they laud the new sidebar so much for better use of widescreen monitors they should love the fact that LibreOffice will have it within a few days...

    4.1 [documentfoundation.org] is due in a matter of days which has an improved sidebar [documentfoundation.org] that's resizeable and not just a static part of the screen.

    I really question what the point of AOO is at this juncture given that LO is clearly the more active project [ohloh.net] and has two years of code clean up and development over AOO due to the way Oracle let it stagnate for so long.

    If you want to try 4.1 now it is on the pre-releases page [libreoffice.org] and it's the final RC there ... ie the same that will be released as final GA in a few days.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Palestrina (715471) *

      Too bad users use the product and don't gain direct productivity merely from looking at Ohloh stats.

      But if they did, the numbers you point at show an interesting story. It shows that the average AOO contributor makes twice the number of commits as the average LO contributor. And the average AOO commit is far more significant, touching twice the number of files as the average LO commit. Net it out and the average AOO contributor is 4x as productive compared to the average LO contributor!

      • by JImbob0i0 (1202835) on Tuesday July 23, 2013 @03:55PM (#44364515)

        Too bad users use the product and don't gain direct productivity merely from looking at Ohloh stats.

        But the stats do paint the picture of the direct benefit to the users...

        See all those deleted lines? That's code clean up that is... That means less bugs and easier to maintain and also easier for new people to help with when they get an itch they need to scratch.

        It shows that the average AOO contributor makes twice the number of commits as the average LO contributor. And the average AOO commit is far more significant, touching twice the number of files as the average LO commit. Net it out and the average AOO contributor is 4x as productive compared to the average LO contributor!

        Way to twist the statistics...

        In a way what you say is absolutely true but then that misses the mark but quite an impressive amount. It's almost to the point I feel a need to call you out on this as being literally true so no one can call you a liar but that truth being represented in such a way as to mask the real situation.

        The recent libreoffice blog post [documentfoundation.org] covers the the growth of committers and includes a brief discussion of "the long tail" with a large number of people in the community submitting small fixes here and there because they can and to scratch a small itch... this is not happening on the AOO code base.

        To me that shows a healthier development community of in the LO camp.

        Put it this way if a project has 100 people each committing to 2 files over a code base and another project which had 2 people committing to 100 files over another fork which would you say was "more productive" and would you equate that with project healthiness?

        • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

          by Anonymous Coward

          > In a way what you say is absolutely true but then that misses the mark but quite an impressive amount. It's almost to the point I feel a need to call you out on this as being literally true so no one can call you a liar but that truth being represented in such a way as to mask the real situation.

          Yeah, that was some "interesting" statistics. But it is really easy to refute. In the last 12 months there were 52 developers on the Apache side (note they include people "hacking on the website" and 351 develo

        • by bonehead (6382)

          To me that shows a healthier development community of in the LO camp.

          Maybe so, but let's not draw focus away from the biggest problem with LO.

          When are they going to give the project a less retarded name?

        • It's almost to the point I feel a need to call you out on this as being literally true so no one can call you a liar but that truth being represented in such a way as to mask the real situation.

          There are three types of lies: lies, damn lies, and statistics

  • by TCPhotography (1245814) on Tuesday July 23, 2013 @03:39PM (#44364329)

    Does it have a WordPerfect-like Reveal Codes feature?

    No?

    No dice.

  • by sproketboy (608031) on Tuesday July 23, 2013 @03:43PM (#44364369)

    Here we go again with all the ranting about the mexican wrestler version. *sigh*

  • I don't know about you, I feel like exposing my erotic story I write to NSA. If openoffice does not have a back door to NSA, it will not cut it for me. Just saying.

The most delightful day after the one on which you buy a cottage in the country is the one on which you resell it. -- J. Brecheux

Working...