Dear community, dear users, dear friends and dear colleagues,
the end of the year is approaching with big steps, and it seems that 2011 passed within just a short glimpse of time. It feels as if it was just yesterday that we celebrated New Year’s Eve, but looking back at all that has happened, it becomes evident that the last 12 months were full of activity, and a lot has happened.
We started The Document Foundation and the LibreOffice project in the fall of 2010, with big visions, and with high hopes. The first weeks have been exciting, they have been thrilling, and we have rarely seen such community movement, so many people following the same goal. One of our strongest wishes for 2011 has been to keep this incredible momentum. Not only did we achieve that, but all the good has even grown, way beyond our imagination, and that is something that makes us particularly proud.
2011 was the year of our first stable release, and many more were about to follow. Today, over 30 million people use LibreOffice in 109 languages, a software developed by 40 core developers and a total of over 300 active developers plus 280 localizers. Probably the biggest achievement is the fact that 230 of those developers are totally new, have never been contributing code to the free office suite before, and were attracted by our open, transparent, meritocratic and inclusive community. Over 16.000 mailing list subscribers are on our 100 mailing lists, and TDF now counts 138 members. Sponsored and supported by a strong and well-balanced Advisory Board, the community is prospering more than we ever could hope for.
However, it is not about numbers. It is about the good feeling and every single contributor who makes the community to what it is today. Especially in times of global communication, it is the human beings that make our online and offline lifes to what they are, it is the human beings who fill them with life. To us, the community is like a big family, with good and personal friends worldwide, people we not only share the same passion with, but also a deep personal friendship with many of them. Our first annual event, the LibreOffice Conference that took place in Paris this October, was not only a successful event and a brilliant conference, but even more, it was the meeting of friends, of a united family. Thinking back of where we stood one and a half years ago, and seeing where we stand now, it still looks like all of you did the impossible.
What we have seen up to today is just the beginning, the beginning of something exciting, and the beginning of something good. In Paris, we announced the next level for LibreOffice, with the work on the Android and iOS ports moving forward, and with an exciting browser-based version being developed. More and more organizations, corporations and governments join our efforts, because they strongly believe in LibreOffice being the future for free office suites, and they firmly believe in the power of a community so diverse but so united, so global but so close together, so polyglot but still speaking the same language, like the LibreOffice community.
During this year, we also learned a lot due to the constructive feedback we received from many users and the community around the world. We listened carefully and we tried to improve things where possible. Working together with you, our users, made us stronger and helped to make the software and the project even better. This, for sure, is a path we will follow also in 2012.
After a successful year, it is time to be thankful for what has been achieved, to be proud of the milestones reached, and to take time to envision the challenges of the next year.
We all here from The Document Foundation wish you and beloved ones a peaceful, joyful and merry holiday season, some silent and relaxed days with those close to you, and a happy, successful and blessed new year!
Thank you for all you did for LibreOffice the past 365 days, thank you for being with us, and we are looking forward to working with you in the next year. A year that, undoubtedly, will be full of surprises, good times and major achievements. It is you who made LibreOffice to what it is today, because that is what LibreOffice was made for and is made by: the community.
The TDF Board of Directors and Membership Committee