The Document Foundation Blog

June 30, 2012

LibreOffice 3.6 Bug Hunting Party – July 6 & 7

Filed under: QA — Florian Effenberger @ 10:39

TDF announces the LibreOffice 3.6 Bug Hunting Party to improve the quality and stability of the best free office suite ever

Berlin, June 29, 2012 – The Document Foundation (TDF) announces the LibreOffice 3.6 bug hunting party, to be held in a virtual environment on July 6 and 7, 2012. Volunteer bug hunters will gather on the Internet from the five continents to spot software problems of the upcoming new major release, featuring a large number of improvements and new functions, in order to make LibreOffice 3.6 again the best free office suite ever.

Participating is easy, and fun. Details are available on the wiki of The Document Foundation
http://wiki.documentfoundation.org/QA/BugHunting_Party_3.6.0
where one can also find a comprehensive list of LibreOffice 3.6 new and improved features
http://wiki.documentfoundation.org/ReleaseNotes/3.6

All you need to join is a PC with Windows, MacOS X or Linux, and LibreOffice 3.6 Beta 3 (or Beta 2), plus a lot of enthusiasm.
The LibreOffice 3.6 Beta is to be downloaded from http://www.libreoffice.org/pre-releases

Filing bugs will be easy, thanks to the improved bug submitting assistant and the help of several experienced people who will be around to help users and supporters with tips, on the QA mailing list (libreoffice-qa@freedesktop.org) and IRC channel (irc://chat.freenode.net/libreoffice).
Most people are expected to join from 8AM to 10PM UTC on both days.

Information on filing bugs may be found here: http://wiki.documentfoundation.org/BugReport

People joining the LibreOffice Bug Hunt Parties not only do so for hunting new bugs. Checking and possibly categorising already submitted bugs also is a popular and interesting activity.

LibreOffice 3.6 Bug Hunting Party – July 6 & 7

Filed under: Announcements, Community, QA — cornouws @ 08:45

TDF announces the LibreOffice 3.6 Bug Hunting Party to improve the quality and stability of the best free office suite ever

Berlin, June 29, 2012 – The Document Foundation (TDF) announces the LibreOffice 3.6 bug hunting party, to be held in a virtual environment on July 6 and 7, 2012.
Volunteer bug hunters will gather on the Internet from the five continents to spot software problems of the upcoming new major release, featuring a large number of improvements and new functions, in order to make LibreOffice 3.6 again the best free office suite ever.

Participating is easy, and fun.
Details are available at the wiki of The Document Foundation, where one can also find a comprehensive list of LibreOffice 3.6 new and improved features.

All you need to join is a PC with Windows, MacOS X or Linux, and LibreOffice 3.6 Beta 3 (or Beta 2), plus a lot of enthusiasm.
The LibreOffice 3.6 Beta is to be downloaded from the pre-releases web-page.

Filing bugs will be easy, thanks to the improved bug submitting assistant and the help of several experienced people who will be around to help users and supporters with tips, on the QA mailing list (libreoffice-qa@freedesktop.org) and IRC channel (irc://chat.freenode.net/libreoffice), where many people are expected to join from 8AM to 10PM UTC on both days.
And of course there is a webpage withinformation on filing bugs.

People joining the LibreOffice Bug Hunt Parties not only do so for hunting new bugs. Checking and possibly categorising already submitted bugs also is a popular and interesting activity.

June 28, 2012

Community Meetings at LibOCon

Filed under: Community, Conference, Meetings — Florian Effenberger @ 10:48

As previously announced, the next LibreOffice Conference will take place from

    October 17th to 19th
    in Berlin, Germany

with the Call for Papers currently running (http://conference.libreoffice.org), and the final program to be announced in early September.

All three days of the conference are open for the general public. In addition, on

    October 16th
    i.e. one day before the official Conference

we will, in good tradition, host the so-called Community Meetings. While they are not per se private, they are – in comparison to the rest of the Conference – mainly targetted towards existing project members, and take place in form of meetings and workshops rather than lectures.

Currently planned are meetings for the following groups:

  • Board of Directors
  • Advisory Board
  • Membership Committee
  • Engineering Steering Committee
  • regional groups, like the German, French, Italian or Brazilian community
  • marketing
  • website
  • design and user experience
  • QA and localization
  • system administrator and infrastructure
  • certification

If you are part of any of those groups, committees or bodies, we strongly recommend planning your trip so you can attend on October 16th already. The Community Meetings serve the purpose to meet your fellow colleagues and friends, discuss the successes of the last twelve months, and plan the achievements of the next year.

Looking forward to seeing you in Berlin!

June 26, 2012

Developer Interview: Lionel Elie Mamane, LibreOffice Base Maintainer and Volunteer

Filed under: Community, Interviews — Florian Effenberger @ 13:06

(Interview by Michael Meeks, edited by Marc Paré)

In our continuing series “Developer Interview”, Lionel Elie Mamane discusses his work with LibreOffice code and of his particular interest with Base. His lead role in maintaining the Base module is helping raise the use of Base among the LibreOffice community at large.

Lionel Elie Mamane

How did you hear about LibreOffice?

Debian switched to it from OpenOffice.org.

LibreOffice can only exist if people are working on it; so please, tell us a bit about yourself. In what other software projects have you been involved?

Mainly Debian, but I’ve always sent patches left and right to scratch my itches; a more or less random selection:

  • IPv6 support for privoxy, an anonyimising HTTP proxy
  • bugfix for gfax, a graphical interface to send faxes: handle spaces in telefax numbers gracefully
  • Linux, the kernel: In SIT tunnels set to “tos inherit”, propagate IPv6 transport class byte from the inner packet to the ToS byte in the outer packet, like IPIP and GRE tunnels already did
  • Pan (newsreader): fix interaction with mutt (email user agent)
  • Pan: bug in thread filter
  • Fixes in some LaTeX packages
  • mutt (email user agent): fix parsing of mailto: URLs

What do you do when you’re not working on LibreOffice?

Finish up my PhD dissertation in theoretical computer science/computer mathematics.

What is your thesis?

The field is proof assistants, that is programs that help mathematicians make theorems (proofs), manage them, etc. But also that check that a proof is correct.

My thesis is that the way current / historic proof assistants are going at it, we will “never” have a nice proof that we can show to a human and that will be “nice” to read. We have to change a bit (but not that much) how they are organized, both as concrete systems (programs), but also the theoretical underpinnings.

I handle the IT needs of a small (15 people) company.

What company? Can you give us a link and tell us of it’s products?

The company is Gestman S.A.. It does administrative, accounting and juridic work.

I’m also adviser to a charitable foundation called: Matanel. Its mission statement is summarized as “Matanel Spirit: The Matanel foundation, granted to give, encourages social entrepreneurship in all over the world.”  The full version of Matanel’s mission statement explains this in more detail.

Additionally to more “classic” charitable stuff (food, education, culture, …), I’m to blame for the logo being on Debconf11, Debconf12. You’ll notice my employer (Gestman s.a.) is also a sponsor of these conferences, and also pays my attendance to the same: http://debconf8.debconf.org/corporate.xhtml.en

When do you usually spend time on the project?

If I was interrupted in mid-thought or mid-bugfix by my car*share*, I finish at home.

So European waking hours?

Yes.

Why did you get involved?

Because I want to use it as a programming platform for database-driven custom business applications at work. As a Microsoft Access killer, if you want. I started fixing bugs and adding small features that were useful to me, and before I really realized it, I find myself being the LibreOffice database expert.

Lovely, that’s exciting! What do your business applications do? Can you flesh that out a bit?

The business applications do:

  • customer database
    • contact data
    • track who is authorized to order which action on behalf of customer
  • billing: manual, automated, semi-automated
    • when customer asks for out-of-package work, bill by hourly tariff
    • statistics on which employee works how many billable/in-package/non-billable hours
    • statistics (for each customer) on how many hours spent on in-package work vs price of package.
  • tracking of assets and investments we manage
  • track advancement of work that needs to be done, and its bouncing from employee to employee or external entity.
  • For example, filing a company’s tax return:
    • accountant prepare balance sheet: employee 1
    • account manager validates: employee 2
    • send to auditor: employee 3
    • waiting for auditor: external service
    • file tax return as certified by auditor: employee 4
    • did we get the filing acknowledgment from the tax authority?

What was your initial experience of contributing to LibreOffice like? And how did that make you feel?

Very welcoming community. Err… Very welcome? My skills are recognized, contributions valued …

What was your first contribution to LibreOffice?

My first “applied as I wrote it” patch seems to be (date:   Sat Jan 15 05:39:40 2011 +0100):

#116187: report left/right page margin setting ignored on Unix 64 bit

The bug was: when one changed the left or right margin of a report on a 64 bit arch, *all* changes done in that dialog were lost.

What have you done since then?

Fixed a lot of stuff in Base, and a bit in scripting.

Great! Can you expand on the importance of fixing base?

Nearly all “enterprise/business applications” are more or less “read this from that database; do this work on it; push that to the database, …”. LibreOffice will *never* be a rapid application development platform à la Microsoft Office + Visual Basic for Applications without a solid database access / management / … component.

How will that improve things for users?

Users will be able to use LibreOffice for database access without crippling bugs.

What is your vision for the future and/or what would you like to see improved?

  • Ideally I’d like to have a rich, vibrant Developer/Tester/QA/ … community around base.
  • Interested in database stuff or scripting in LibreOffice? Come join  us! You can be useful at many different levels, with many different skills and levels of specialization: programming, bug triage, QA, testing, documentation writing, …
  • The reporting system is a bit primitive and could use a real upgrade.
  • It would be nice if forms could show several records at once (not only in grid mode).
  • The many dependencies on Java are a liability, and I’d like to have them curtailed / removed.

What do you think of the new build system?

gbuildification is a nice step forward, but it is “recursive make”, which is bad; see http://miller.emu.id.au/pmiller/books/rmch/  At least now it is not “much worse” than most other projects.

Errata: Actually, it was now explained to me that the “recursive” nature of our gbuild system is transitory, and that wen everything will be gbuildified, it won’t be recursive anymore (everything will be in the tail_build module). Great news!

I’m 100% convinced that our dependency information is incomplete and/or too low granularity. I still have build problems solved by a “make module.clean” or some such. And, when I try to do a more surgical “rm”, it often fails BECAUSE THAT FILE IS NOT REDONE, so, compilation of a different file fails with message “file you removed missing”.

Which is your preferred text editor and why?

Emacs. Habit (keybindings in muscle memory), features, programmability in a decent language (I’m a functional programming guy at heart), …

What would you encourage new contributors to work on with you?

I’ve made a few “easy hacks” with suggestions.

Anything else interesting you get up to when not hacking?

No, hacking is my life ;)

Thanks for your time and commitment to the project!

June 21, 2012

LibreOffice Conference supported by the German Federal Ministries of the Interior and of Economics and Technology

Filed under: Community, Conference, Meetings — Florian Effenberger @ 06:55

Three days in Berlin focused on LibreOffice, open standards and interoperability
Call for papers is open until 15th August

Berlin, 21st June 2012. Today the LibreOffice project announces details of the LibreOffice Conference, taking place in Berlin from 17th-19th October. “Open standards, interoperability and free software are becoming more and more important in the political and public discourse, and will play a central role in this year’s conference program,” says Jacqueline Rahemipour, from the organizing association Freies Office Deutschland e.V. and member of the organizing committee.

In addition, the project announced that the Call for Papers is immediately open until 15th August. Users and developers are invited to submit papers fitting one of the topics listed below. The submissions will then be reviewed by a committee, and the final program will be made available in early September. Topics for this year are:

  • Open Document Format (ODF) Plugfest
  • Interoperability
  • LibreOffice – Development and future: Technology, API, Extensions
  • Community-Track: Localization, Documentation, etc.
  • Best Practice und Migration: Certification and Support

“The decision to hold this years conference in Berlin was made by an overwhelming majority of the community. Following the founding of The Document Foundation in February, we are proud to also have the LibreOffice Conference come to Berlin. This is a major event, not only for those involved in the project, but also for the everyone interested in the use of free office software and open standards”, explains Florian Effenberger, Chairman of the Board at The Document Foundation.

Further details regarding the Call for Papers can be found on the Conference website.

Links

LibreOffice Conference: http://conference.libreoffice.org
Freies Office Deutschland e.V.: http://www.frodev.org
The Document Foundation: http://www.documentfoundation.org

Media Contacts

The Document Foundation
Florian Effenberger
E-Mail: floeff@documentfoundation.org
Phone: +49 8341 99660880
Mobile: +49 151 14424108

Freies Office Deutschland e.V.
Jacqueline Rahemipour
E-Mail: jrahemipour@frodev.org

June 10, 2012

TDF InfoGraphics, May 2012

Filed under: Technology — Tags: , , , — italovignoli @ 17:13

TDF InfoGraphics June 2012

If you are a LibreOffice user, you can download the Hybrid PDF from here and open it as a normal ODF file (using File > Open). If you are not a LibreOffice user, you can open the file using a PDF viewer, or install LibreOffice to discover this unique feature.

June 3, 2012

New and changed features – experience and test them now!

Filed under: Uncategorized — cornouws @ 14:11

Hi all,

This is the second post with a list of features/functions that have been worked on recently.

We tried our best to include all the important ones and to make sure that the referred information is clear enough. But whenever you miss something: don’t hesitate to ask (via the QA mail list) if there is anything you really miss.

Just as the previous post, this all is to give you as interested users the change to take a better look at the work and provide valuable feed back for the developers.

You can simply download the latest nightly build, and install it on your computer. It will be placed beside your current LibreOffice. (Or you may want to do a custom parallel installation.) Look at the features of your desire or that you work with most, and give some feedback. Simple as that.

Now the list:

  • Writer was confused by overlapping grammar errors, 2012-05-09, commit message / info, related issue: 49605.
  • Printing from Calc: use default printer settings only when explicity mentioned., 2012-05-09, commit message.
  • Bullet lists in file saved as .doc or .docx were loaded incorrectly, 2012-05-09, related issue: 34814.
  • Color Scales are now imported from xlsx., 2012-05-10, commit message(one of the many related ones).
  • Value >12 with AM/PM can’t be clock time, 2012-05-10, commit message, related issue: 46233.
  • Import of .xls with HTML, 2012-05-10, commit message, related issue: 49639.
  • Work / improvements on fields, mostly Calc, and Draw/Impress. New is the possibility to insert 3 new fields into Calc cells via the context menu with cell in edit mode, 2012-05-11, one of the related commit messages.
  • OpenFormula function Datedif added, 2012-05-13, one of the related commit messages, related issue: 44456.
  • Fixing drawing problems with ruler, 2012-05-16, commit message / info.
  • Hight of tab pages in dialogs: changed code to allow for easier variable height, 2012-05-17, commit message / info.
  • Databars are now imported from oox, 2012-05-18, commit message / info.
  • Related to the previous: some changes to color scales – maybe interesting to look at too, 2012-05-18, commit message / info.
  • Changes with borders and more in Writer UI, 2012-05-18, commit message / info.
  • Autofilter: separators, sorting, some strings, 2012-05-18, one of the related commit messages.
  • Work around broken cups installations in complex environments, 2012-05-18, commit message / info.
  • Make that row heights (incl default row height) from excel files are saved correctly, 2012-05-22, commit message / info.
  • Changes in status bar and zoom slider, 2012-05-22, one of the related commit messages.
  • Handle columns in docx files, 2012-05-24, one of the related commit messages.
  • Improve shape position in xlsx files, 2012-05-25, one of the related commit messages, related issue: 49430.
  • Import new conditional format information for xlsx files, 2012-05-25, commit message / info.
  • Better export of images scaled in PDF export, 2012-05-28, commit message / info, related issue: 46378.
  • Better rendering of multiline input bar, 2012-05-28, commit message / info.

Found something worth a bug-report? Then this page will help you. There also is a list with the people that are there to help you helping! For that list and for general information in LibreOffice QA, look here.

Thanks a lot for your support!

June 2, 2012

LibreOffice receives “Technology for Citizens Award” from Guarulhos city, Brazil

Filed under: Awards — Florian Effenberger @ 08:52

Guarulhos, May 18, 2012. The LibreOffice project received the “Technology for Citizens Best International Software” award from the city of Guarulhos, Brazil. This prize has been given in reconnaissance of the importance of LibreOffice in the city’s social programs.

The ceremony took place with Ms Eliane Domingos, a TDF member and activist in the Brazilian LibreOffice community. The free office software is included in the Guarux distribution, an Ubuntu-based Linux distribution assembled by the city’s IT department, for use by all of its public servants and in the so called “telecentros”, which are centers maintained by the local government, allowing the economically deprived population to use computers and access the internet, as part of the social program to raised the population awareness on new technologies.

“This award is special for The Document Foundation, because it shows how important LibreOffice and free software are in general for the emerging countries, that need to close the gap of knowledge. Free software is a way to eradicate poverty and bring a significant part of the population into the information mainstream”, says Eliane Domingos. “For me personally it is also an honour, because I am deeply involved in promoting LibreOffice as a valuable tool for all Brazilians”, she concluded.

The mayor of Guarulhos, Sebastião Almeida, reminded the important role of the public administration in technology improvements: “Technology only makes sense if aimed to the citizen promotion and valuation, and the mission of the public administration is to innovate more and more so that the citizen live happier and better”, says Almeida.

Tecnologia Cidadã Award

Ms. Eliane Domingos and Mayor Sebastião Almeida

Ms Eliane Domingos and Mr. Rodrigo Assumpção, DATAPREV Chairman

Ms Eliane Domingos and Jesulino Alves, LibreOffice Community

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