LibreOffice contributor interview: Chandrakant Dhutadmal

LibreOffice contributors around the world have a big impact on the success of the project – we really appreciate their help. Today we’re talking to Chandrakant Dhutadmal, who is involved in various free and open source projects including Mozilla Firefox and LibreOffice…

Where do you live?

I live in Pune, Maharashtra State, India.

Do you work for a LibreOffice-related company or just contribute in your spare time?

I work for the Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC), which is an autonomous scientific organization under the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, in the government of India. We worked on a project of national importance where we aimed to provide software tools in Indian languages (free of charge) so that people can easily use the software in their own languages.

One of the applications which we worked on initially (way back in 2006) was OpenOffice.org. Later we shifted to work on LibreOffice. I do contribute to the project in my free time as well.

How did you get involved with LibreOffice?

During the above mentioned project work, we interacted with many organizations and individuals. Mr. Rajesh Ranjan was one of the persons who I interacted with – and told to about how the open source community works, and what kind of impact can it bring to the overall project.

We interacted very frequently and that is where we started working on organized efforts of volunteers for LibreOffice in India. I started doing a bit of contributions for LibreOffice since that time. Mr. Mahesh Kulkarni, who heads the department where I work, and my office in general have been really supportive for such activities.

What areas of the project do you normally work on? Anything else you want to tackle?

I normally work on LibreOffice marketing, community building and localization. These tasks keep me occupied enough.

What was your initial experience of contributing to LibreOffice like?

I was very pleased with the way the global LibreOffice community accepts newcomers and beginners. Initially, I was hardly a serious contributor to LibreOffice. But the fact that even small contributions by new contributors are valued by the community. Members like Sophie Gautier and Italo Vignoli have always been very supportive to me and others in India.

What does LibreOffice need most right now?

One of the most common and frequent issues which people report to me whenever I talk about LibreOffice is compatibility with Microsoft Office. It is quite a difficult task to satisfy them by explaining a few facts. I generally ask people to pinpoint the issues which affect them. Another area is to build a community of developers in India who can contribute to LibreOffice development.

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

I read lot of articles on financial literacy. This is one of the topics which interests me a lot. I also like to travel to different places.

Anything else you want to mention?

I hope people get motivated enough by reading interviews like this, and get involved in the project!

Thanks Chandrakant – and indeed, there are many ways to get involved and make LibreOffice better for millions of users around the world. Our community is friendly and fun, and contributing to the QA, documentation, design, marketing or other projects is a great way to build up experience for a future career!

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