The Document Foundation Blog

2015/04/17

First bug hunting session for LibreOffice 5.0

Filed under: LibreOffice, QA — italovignoli @ 14:15

Berlin, April 17, 2015 – The LibreOffice community is getting ready for the next major release – planned for the end of July – with a bug hunting session focused on new features and fixes for bugs and regressions. The session will last 3 full days, from May 22 to May 24, 2015, and check the first beta of LibreOffice 5.0.

On those dates, mentors will be available from 08AM UTC to 10PM UTC to help less experienced volunteers to triage bugs, on the QA IRC channel and via email on the QA mailing list.

Those who cannot join during the bug hunting session are always welcome to help chasing bugs and regressions when they have time. There will be another bug hunting session in June, to test LibreOffice 5.0 Release Candidate 1.
Builds of LibreOffice 5.0 Beta 1 will be available until early June from this link: http://dev-builds.libreoffice.org/pre-releases/.

Further information are available here: https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/BugHunting_Session_5.0.0.0.

The decision to change the naming/numbering scheme of the next LibreOffice major release from LibreOffice 4.5 to LibreOffice 5.0 is based on the following rationale:

  1. The next major release of LibreOffice will be the first available for Windows 64bit, and – during the life of the 5.0 family – on mobile and cloud;
  2. The next major release of LibreOffice will integrate another significant batch of visual and usability improvements, which will complete the activity started with LibreOffice 4.4;
  3. The difference in numbering will make it easier to communicate the gap in features with the previous generation, and convince an increasing number of users to switch to LibreOffice;
  4. Last, but not least, 2015 is the 5th anniversary of the announcement of The Document Foundation and LibreOffice.

2015/04/10

The Document Liberation, one year after

Filed under: LibreOffice, Technology — italovignoli @ 14:16

Berlin, April 9, 2015 – The Document Liberation is a project of The Document Foundation, announced in early April 2014 to host the different libraries handling proprietary and legacy document formats within LibreOffice. The idea was to provide a single repository for other software projects willing to deploy the same libraries, in order to simplify the integration. The project is led by Fridrich Strba and David Tardon, two long time LibreOffice contributors.

During 2014, members of the project released a new framework library, called librevenge, which contains all the document interfaces and helper types, in order to simplify the dependency chain. In addition, they started a new library for importing Adobe PageMaker documents, libpagemaker, written as part of Google Summer of Code 2014 by Anurag Kanungo.

Existing libraries have also been extended with the addition of more formats, like libwps with the addition of Microsoft Works Spreadsheet and Database by Laurent Alonso. He is now working on adding support for Lotus 1-2-3, which is one of the most famous legacy applications for personal computers. Laurent has also added support for more than twenty legacy Mac formats to libmwaw.

Developers have created two export libraries – libepubgen for ePub and librvngabw for Abiword – and are currently working at improving import filters for Adobe Freehand – libfreehand – and Apple Pages – libetonyek.

Document Liberation libraries are available for Corel WordPerfect (including Graphics) and Corel Draw, Microsoft Works, AbiWord, Microsoft Publisher and Microsoft Visio, Apple Keynote, Adobe FreeHand, Aldus PageMaker, plus many legacy Mac document formats and many e-book formats.

Each library under the Document Liberation umbrella exists as an independent project, with its own maintainer, release schedule and license, according to the Ethos of Free Software which is championed by The Document Foundation.

For more information: http://www.documentliberation.org.

2015/04/02

LibreOffice 4.4.2 “Fresh” is available for download

Filed under: Announcements, LibreOffice — italovignoli @ 10:59

Berlin, April 2, 2015 – The Document Foundation announces LibreOffice 4.4.2, the second minor release of the LibreOffice 4.4 “fresh” family, with over 50 fixes over LibreOffice 4.4.0 and 4.4.1.

New features introduced by the LibreOffice 4.4 family are listed on this web page: https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/ReleaseNotes/4.4.

The Document Foundation suggests to deploy LibreOffice in enterprises and large organizations when backed by professional support by certified people (a list is available at: http://www.documentfoundation.org/certification/).

People interested in technical details about the release can access the change log here: https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/Releases/4.4.2/RC1 (fixed in RC1) and https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/Releases/4.4.2/RC2 (fixed in RC2).

Download LibreOffice

LibreOffice 4.4.2 is immediately available for download from the following link: http://www.libreoffice.org/download/.

LibreOffice users, free software advocates and community members can support The Document Foundation with a donation at http://donate.libreoffice.org. Money collected will be used to grow the infrastructure, and support marketing activities to increase the awareness of the project, both at global and local level.

2015/03/25

LibreOffice to become the cornerstone of the world’s first universal productivity solution

Filed under: Announcements, LibreOffice — italovignoli @ 13:12

Berlin, March 25, 2015 – LibreOffice, the best free office suite ever, is set to become the cornerstone of the world’s first global personal productivity solution – LibreOffice Online – following an announcement by IceWarp and Collabora of a joint development effort. LibreOffice is available as a native application for every desktop OS, and is currently under development for Android. In addition, it is available on virtual platforms for Chrome OS, Firefox OS and iOS.

“LibreOffice was born with the objective of leveraging the OpenOffice historic heritage to build a solid ecosystem capable of attracting those investments which are key for the further development of free software,” says Eliane Domingos de Sousa, Director of The Document Foundation. “Thanks to the increasing number of companies which are investing on the development of LibreOffice, we are on track to make it available on every platform, including the cloud. We are grateful to IceWarp for providing the resources for a further development of LibreOffice Online.”

Development of LibreOffice Online started back in 2011, with the availability of a proof of concept of the client front end, based on HTML5 technology. That proof of concept will be developed into a state of the art cloud application, which will become the free alternative to proprietary solutions such as Google Docs and Office 365, and the first to natively support the Open Document Format (ODF) standard.

“It is wonderful to marry IceWarp’s vision and investment with our passion and skills for LibreOffice development. It is always satisfying to work on something that, as a company, we have a need for ourselves,” says Michael Meeks, Vice President of Collabora Productivity, who developed the proof of concept back in 2011 and will oversee the development of LibreOffice Online.

The availability of LibreOffice Online will be communicated at a later stage.

2015/02/26

LibreOffice 4.4.1 “Fresh” is available for download

Filed under: Announcements, LibreOffice — Tags: — italovignoli @ 11:59

Berlin, February 26, 2015 – The Document Foundation announces LibreOffice 4.4.1, the first minor release of LibreOffice 4.4 “fresh” family, with over 100 fixes over LibreOffice 4.4.0. The release represents the combined effort of the over 900 developers attracted by the project since September 2010, with at least three new developers joining the project each month for 60 months in a row.

New features introduced by the LibreOffice 4.4 family are listed on this web page: https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/ReleaseNotes/4.4.

The Document Foundation suggests to deploy LibreOffice in enterprises and large organizations when backed by professional support by certified people (a list is available at: http://www.documentfoundation.org/certification/).

People interested in technical details about the release can access the change log here: https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/Releases/4.4.1/RC1 (fixed in RC1) and https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/Releases/4.4.1/RC2 (fixed in RC2).

Download LibreOffice

LibreOffice 4.4.1 and LibreOffice 4.3.6 are immediately available for download from the following link: http://www.libreoffice.org/download/. LibreOffice users, free software advocates and community members can support The Document Foundation with a donation at http://donate.libreoffice.org. Money collected will be used to grow the infrastructure, and support marketing activities to increase the awareness of the project, both at global and local level.

2015/02/20

The Document Foundation announces LibreOffice 4.3.6

Filed under: Announcements, LibreOffice — italovignoli @ 09:02

Berlin, February 20, 2015 – The Document Foundation announces LibreOffice 4.3.6 “Still”, the sixth minor release of the LibreOffice 4.3 family, which is now the suggested version of the software for large deployments in the enterprise and conservative users. LibreOffice 4.3.6 contains over 110 bug fixes. The Document Foundation suggests to deploy LibreOffice 4.3.6 in enterprises and large organizations when backed by professional support by certified individuals (a list is available at http://www.documentfoundation.org/certification/) capable of providing value added support.

People interested in technical details can find change logs for LibreOffice 4.3.6 here: https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/Releases/4.3.6/RC1 (fixed in RC1) and https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/Releases/4.3.6/RC2 (fixed in RC2).

Download LibreOffice

LibreOffice 4.4 “Fresh” and LibreOffice 4.3.6 “Still” are available for download from the following link: http://www.libreoffice.org/download/. LibreOffice users, free software advocates and community members can support The Document Foundation with a donation at http://donate.libreoffice.org.

2015/01/29

LibreOffice 4.4, the most beautiful LibreOffice ever

Filed under: Announcements, LibreOffice — italovignoli @ 13:01
  • The user interface has been improved in a significant way
  • Interoperability with OOXML file formats has been extended
  • Improved source code quality based on Coverity Scan analysis

Berlin, January 29, 2015 – The Document Foundation is pleased to announce LibreOffice 4.4, the ninth major release of the free office suite, with a significant number of design and user experience improvements.

“LibreOffice 4.4 has got a lot of UX and design love, and in my opinion is the most beautiful ever,” says Jan “Kendy” Holesovsky, a member of the Membership Committee and the leader of the design team. “We have completed the dialog conversion, redesigned menu bars, context menus, toolbars, status bars and rulers to make them much more useful. The Sifr monochrome icon theme is extended and now the default on OS X. We also developed a new Color Selector, improved the Sidebar to integrate more smoothly with menus, and reworked many user interface details to follow today’s UX trends.”

LibreOffice 4.4 offers several significant improvements in other areas, too:

  • Support of OpenGL transitions in Windows, and improved implementation based on the new OpenGL framework;
  • Digital signing of PDF files during the export process;
  • Installation of free fonts Carlito and Caladea to replace proprietary Microsoft C-Fonts Calibri and Cambria, to get rid of font related issues while opening OOXML files;
  • Addition of several new default templates, designed by volunteers;
  • Visual editing of Impress master pages, to remove unwanted elements, adding or hiding a level to the outline numbering, and toggling bullets on or off;
  • Better Track Changes – with new buttons in the Track Changes toolbar – and AutoCorrect features in Writer;
  • Improved import filters for Microsoft Visio, Microsoft Publisher and AbiWord files, and Microsoft Works spreadsheets;
  • New import filters for Adobe Pagemaker, MacDraw, MacDraw II and RagTime for Mac;
  • Greatly expanded support for media capabilities on each platform.

A rather comprehensive description of all LibreOffice 4.4 new features, including developers’ names, is available on the release notes page at the following address: https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/ReleaseNotes/4.4. In addition, a summary of the most significant development related details has been published by Michael Meeks: https://people.gnome.org/~michael/.

People interested in technical details can find change logs here: https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/Releases/4.4.0/Beta1 (fixed in Beta 1), https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/Releases/4.4.0/Beta2 (fixed in Beta 2), https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/Releases/4.4.0/RC1 (fixed in RC1), https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/Releases/4.4.0/RC2 (fixed in RC2) and https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/Releases/4.4.0/RC3 (fixed in RC3).

Download LibreOffice

LibreOffice 4.4 is immediately available for download from the following link: http://www.libreoffice.org/download/ or http://download.documentfoundation.org/libreoffice/stable/. LibreOffice users, free software advocates and community members can support The Document Foundation with a donation at http://donate.libreoffice.org.

About The Document Foundation

The Document Foundation is an independent, self-governing and meritocratic organization, based on Free Software ethos and incorporated in Germany as a not for profit entity. TDF is focused on the development of LibreOffice – the best free office suite ever – chosen by the global community as the legitimate heir of OOo, and as such adopted by a growing number of public administrations, enterprises and SMBs for desktop productivity.

TDF is accessible to individuals and organizations who agree with its core values and contribute to its activities. At the end of December 2014, the foundation has 205 members and over 3,000 volunteer contributors worldwide.

tdf-libreoffice44info

The infographics is also available as a PDF.

2015/01/27

The Document Foundation announces the results of the Android Tender

Filed under: Android, Announcements, LibreOffice — Tags: , — italovignoli @ 09:54

Berlin, January 27, 2015 – Following the successful release of the LibreOffice Viewer (Beta), The Document Foundation announces the results of the Android tender – http://tdf.io/tender – today. The tender aims at developing the technical framework that will ultimately power LibreOffice for Android, including the document editor. This tender is one more step towards a compelling, elegant and full-featured experience of LibreOffice on Android.

“We have received a large number of requests for LibreOffice on Android, but at the same time we have realized that without a solid base framework it would have been extremely difficult for the ecosystem to develop a full fledged application for that platform,” comments Thorsten Behrens, TDF Chairman. “With the other members of the BoD, we have then decided to use a portion of the money coming from donations to fund the development of such a framework. This represents an innovative way to spend donations money, and respects the will of the people who have donated to fund an Android application. We invite our happy users to keep on their support with donations.”

To confirm the interest for LibreOffice on Android, the Viewer – although still a Beta – has already been downloaded by tens of thousands of users in just a week, and reviewed by hundreds of websites.

Three work packages, out of the four included in the tender, have been assigned as follows: (1) infrastructure and (2) selections to Collabora, (4) cloud storage and e-mail to Igalia [details of the work packages are available on the tender page]. Results are expected during the month of March 2015.

“The tender process has been a completely new experience for the Board of Directors and for myself”, says Florian Effenberger, Executive Director of The Document Foundation. “The most challenging part has been to create the format of the tender according to the principles set in our statutes, to set an even ground of competition for all the participants. Once again, we have set a new ground for free software foundations, by investing in the development of a framework, to foster the development of a full fledged LibreOffice for Android. I would like to take this opportunity to thank all the companies who have sent their proposals, including those who have not been selected.”

The Document Foundation will be making the work available as a series of Beta builds over time which will incrementally add more powerful editing capabilities. Users are encouraged to download and play with the application, and provide their feedback to help improve the quality of the software.

The Document Foundation is grateful to all donors for their ongoing support of the project, through the donations page at: http://donate.libreoffice.org.

2014/12/23

Behind the scenes at TDF: Certification

Filed under: Certification, employees, Interviews, LibreOffice — Florian Effenberger @ 10:13

Towards the end of the year, The Document Foundation would like to share achievements in 2014 with our community and our generous donours, to whom we’d like to express our sincerest gratitude and thanks for their incredible and wonderful support and their invaluable contributions!

italo-speakingItalo Vignoli, who is in charge of the LibreOffice Certification Program, summarizes the efforts undergone so far, the status quo and the plans for 2015:

Certification Project, looking forward to the first peer-to-peer reviews

certinfographicsTDF has announced the Certification Program in early November, with applications open only to TDF Members until April 2015, for Migrations and Trainings. The first peer-to-peer review session will be at FOSDEM in Brussels, on January 31 and February 2, 2015.

Although the website and all documents are in English, peer-to-peer reviews will be managed – as far as possible – in the native language of the candidate.

For people not able to reach Brussels, we will organize peer-to-peer reviews via videoconferencing.

The deadline for applications, to reach the first review session, is January 16, 2015, to allow two full weeks before the actual peer-to-peer review. In fact, we have to look at applications, approve or reject them (or keep them on hold when they are from non TDF Members), and provide a feedback.

We have a dozen applications so far, from TDF Members, from non TDF Members, and from developers.

We will complete the review of the first applications and provide a feedback by December 23, 2014. The process is still in the early stage, so we are getting up to speed and sharing all the decisions with the group to reach a consensus.

In general, we will accept or reject applications from TDF Members, we will postpone to March/April 2015 applications from non TDF Members, and we will forward applications from developers to the ESC.

In fact, Developers Certification is managed by the ESC, and is by invitation (as reiterated on the website, and on Certification Q&A). So, developers should not apply via the website.

Applying for LibreOffice Certification is not difficult, but to make it even easier we have created an infographics to explain it in detail. Following the seven steps, it will be easier to provide all necessary informations.
For any additional information, please write to certification@libreoffice.org.

2014/12/22

Behind the scenes at TDF: L10N and NLP

Filed under: Community, employees, Foundation, Interviews, LibreOffice — Florian Effenberger @ 10:55

Towards the end of the year, The Document Foundation would like to share achievements in 2014 with our community and our generous donours, to whom we’d like to express our sincerest gratitude and thanks for their incredible and wonderful support and their invaluable contributions!

Sophie Gautier is in charge of our L10N and NLP projects at The Document Foundation, and gives you insight into this key part of our project:

_SDS5526L10n – NLPs status quo

I would like to give a brief overview of the many things that happened or are in the pipe either on the Localization project (L10n) or on the Native Language projects (NLPs). For the latter, it is not always easy to know what is going on locally, but we tend to get more and more feedback from these groups which is really great.

So, on the Localization side, several new languages were added to Pootle these last months, more Indic languages, for example. Translating UI and Help is a very huge task, and when you think it is finished, there is still some work to do for the next version. For example, currently, the teams are in the starting blocks to translate the 4.4.x new features strings and the various enhancements that have been provided by the Design team. Also the change of file format to .ui means that the l10n teams had to translate again all the dialogs. Fortunately, this change is of great help because the dialogs adapt to the length of the strings (no need anymore to count the characters in the word to fit the space), but we are also able to display those dialogs in Glade, allowing to see the strings in context, which is something all localizers are dreaming of! All in all, that makes many new words for both UI and Help projects. And this is not the only translation projects we handle via Pootle, there is also the Website, Impress for Android and iOS, sometimes AskBot projects.

Dedicated to newcomers of the l10n project, two guides have been written; one concerning how to use Pootle, the second one on the structure of .po files (for example, it shows how to distinguish variables or which xml tags are used). There was absolutely no documentation on the structure contents by the past and one had to guess what he had to translate or not. And it is very easy to break a build when tags miss or mismatch, so this brings some relief to the developers too.

Thanks to our Brazilian friends several of the help articles concerning new functions have been completed. We are also working on porting the translation of the help files on the wiki. This is a difficult task because we do not want to complicate the translation task on one hand, but we want to simplify the help maintenance and open it to non-technical contributors on the other hand, which is currently impossible. Some technical issues have still to be resolved, but we are optimistic that we will be able to set it in a near future. As a work in progress also, we hope to push the migration to a new version of Pootle, with an integrated translation memory.

On the Native Language projects side, we are happy to see more and more contributors to the local projects and really good news coming from several of them, like the Italian community or the Japanese and Chinese ones. They not only contribute to their local projects, but you can find those members active in QA, development or documentation.

One of the major tasks handled this year by these teams was the translation and adaptation of the new website design. During the year, the website itself was translated on Pootle and the content by website owners. This gives a uniformed design to all the language sites bringing more quality and a professional look and feel to our project.

One way to measure the growth of activities in these projects is how we all together manage the press releases. Once the text is fixed by the marketing project, the native language projects translate them and send them back to the marketing team for distribution to the press in their countries. We are now able to release in almost 9 languages for each major release. It is also something really exciting to see how the developers, the quality assurance, native language, design and marketing projects interact during the last month before the release. Of course it happens also all time between two or three of them, but the communication has improved between all of them.

Another great thing that has happened recently while in heavy discussion since some times, is the Planet in all languages. It is really impressive to see all those languages mixed in one thread but that you can filter by the language you prefer. There is currently ten languages available covering several blog writers.

Always trying to be as transparent as possible and to bring as much information to the community as we can, the Annual Report due as a TDF official document to the Berlin authorities, has been translated into English and is available to the Native Language projects for their own use, to inform either on the product and the community.

On the local side, TDF has supported several hackfests and numerous events have been organized all over the world by the Native Language Projects. And we are really happy that the Danish team is organizing the next international LibreOffice conference in Aarhus.

To reflect all this effervescence, we have set a Big Thank You page on the wiki, where all L10n and NLPs contributors are invited to add their name. But that’s not all, we have also a world map, detailing the skills of the contributor in addition to his location. And stay tuned, more is coming!

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