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OpenOffice.org 3.0 Beta Released

timothy posted more than 6 years ago | from the better-each-time-mostly dept.

Software 390

Sean0michael writes "OpenOffice.org has announced their 3.0 Beta is ready for testing. The new version includes some great enhancements, including MS Office 2007 import filters, an improved notes feature, a built-in Solver component, and an Aqua interface for Macs. The site has a complete list of Beta features. Download your beta release from their site."

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Hang in there guys (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23326310)

In a few more years OpenOffice.org may be almost as good as Microsoft Office.

Re:Hang in there guys (4, Informative)

sm62704 (957197) | more than 6 years ago | (#23327168)

You got that backwards there, son. Even though I know you're either trolling or (more likely) astroturfing, I'm going to bite.

I can open a word document with OO. I cannot open an OO document with Word.
I can open a Word Perfect document with OO. I cannot open a WP document with Word.
OO has the cool cachet of the GPL, while Word is just another boring corporate moneymaker.
OO has fewer bugs and faster bug fixes.
OO costs nothing, while stupid people pay good cash for Word that could otherwise be spent on more important things like beer, games, and more beer.

The only thing Word has going for it is that the Uncyclopedia parodies Bill Gates [uncyclopedia.org] (and even includes a real criminal justice system mug shot [uncyclopedia.org] of him) but not Scott McNealy [uncyclopedia.org] . I mean, if Uncyclopedia doesn't make fun of you your software must really suck, right?

Re:Hang in there guys (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23327180)

Well, you do need to give them a few years. After all, being able to match Microsoft's bloatware takes time.

Aqua (5, Insightful)

Srsen (413456) | more than 6 years ago | (#23326356)

Congratulations to the OOo team on (finally) getting an Aqua interface running on Mac OS X. This is a great leap forward for the project and I predict will grow the project significantly in both user base and contributors.

Re:Aqua (4, Informative)

Sunshinerat (1114191) | more than 6 years ago | (#23326396)

Anybody spotted the PPC version of this?
Looks like there is only an Intel version, no universal binary.

Re:Aqua (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23326734)

I'd just get the powerpc version of NeoOffice [neooffice.org] . It's not 3.0, but it works great.

Re:Aqua (3, Insightful)

MBGMorden (803437) | more than 6 years ago | (#23327528)

That kinda kills the whole joy of the conversion to an Aqua interface on OOo though. The whole point of that was so that we could move on to the "official" version and stop using NeoOffice in the first place.

It makes no sense whatsoever for them to not make PPC binaries available. I have both Intel and PPC Macs, and the PPC machines are still perfectly good machines and are nowhere close to deserving of their treatment as outdated relics.

Re:Aqua (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23327602)

Yeah, but that is glacial on a good day...

Re:Aqua (1)

david@ecsd.com (45841) | more than 6 years ago | (#23326628)

Yeah, but how long is it going to take before some douche bag starts whining about how it doesn't "feel like a 'real' Mac application?" Probably in 5 . . . 4 . . . 3 . . . 2 . . . .

Re:Aqua (4, Funny)

Farmer Tim (530755) | more than 6 years ago | (#23326828)

It reminds me of Appleworks. Which is to say it feels like a Mac application, but not a very good one.

(Kidding. A brief fiddle about with it makes me very hopeful.)

Re:Aqua (5, Informative)

99BottlesOfBeerInMyF (813746) | more than 6 years ago | (#23327438)

Yeah, but how long is it going to take before some douche bag starts whining about how it doesn't "feel like a 'real' Mac application?" Probably in 5 . . . 4 . . . 3 . . . 2 . . . .

Ooooh! I want to be that douche bag!

Seriously, this is a great step forwards, but like most ports it is still seriously lacking in real functionality, especially when it comes to features that OS X offers, but other OS's do not. These include:

  • - spell checking - OO.org claims to support OS X's built in spell checker, but as of the beta still flags words as misspelled that every other application knows are not because I added them. Training two, separate spell checkers to know all the technical terms I use daily are not misspellings is a hassle and is "not native." Hopefully this will be fixed by the time the final version ships.
  • - system services - OO.org cannot use any OS X system services including the built in, universal grammar checker, language translation services, or any of the dozen or so services I use in MS Word, Pages, InDesign, TextEdit, mail.app, etc., etc.
  • - responsiveness - whether it is because it is a port, or just because it is bloated, OO.org is still a dog for performance. I sometimes see visible lag when tying in word processing documents and it really, really hogs resources. MS Word is slow and a hog, but OO.org is really the only application I use regularly that is worse in that regard.
  • - keyboard shortcuts - OO.org does not use the standardized keyboard shortcuts for all functions, but does use them for some. For example, copy and paste uses the standard (cmd-c, and cmd-v) but increasing the font size does not use the same (cmd+) that native apps do. Sticking with one set across all platforms makes sense as a standard. Using the standards on a platform makes sense. Going halfway in between, however, means I have to guess if a given feature will be like a "real Mac application" or like OO.org on Windows or something else entirely.

Please note. These don't mean OO.org sucks or the developers are lazy or anything else. It just means that there is a real usability and functionality concern when comparing a not quite polished port to a native application. One of the drawbacks of cross-platform applications (especially when they are not designed as cross-platform initially, but try to port to new platforms) is they tend to miss things and also tend to become a least common denominator when it comes to features. Windows and Linux don't have a universal grammar checker, so if you use OO.org on OS X (which does) it is ignored, despite being implemented by default in all native applications.

Re:Aqua (1)

dgb2n (85206) | more than 6 years ago | (#23326662)

It is an accomplishment and I'll download it but I wonder how this compares to Neooffice.

Re:Aqua (4, Insightful)

rubah (1197475) | more than 6 years ago | (#23326954)

will there be a need for neooffice after this? I thought their primary function was making OO.O mac-like.

Re:Aqua (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23326930)

User base, yes. Contributions, unlikely. The OS X community is renowned for its exclusive commitment to Apple. I can't name a single significant open source project that originated as an OS X-only application but now runs on Linux, for example.

Re:Aqua (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23327050)

That's because we don't insist on writing everything in horrible languages like C and C++ to hideous APIs like GTK. Makes it hard to port, see.

Re:Aqua (3, Interesting)

dotancohen (1015143) | more than 6 years ago | (#23327170)

Not ported per se, but half of KDE looks like it was lifted from the Mac. Quicksilver has spawned a dozen clones.

Re:Aqua (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23327522)

Right, and a huge portion of OS X was lifted wholesale from FreeBSD, so what? Pointing out clones or copies of applications is not what I was asking.


So I'll ask again: Name a single significant open source application that originated on OS X and now runs on other platforms. You can't, because OS X is designed specifically to prevent cross-platform development, and the Apple development community likes it that way.


Your inability to honestly answer this question proves my point that Mac users will certainly enjoy downloading and using OpenOffice for free, but very very few will contribute anything back: because OS X developers simply don't care about other platforms. This is also proven by the existence of things like Darwin ports, where the contributions are all one way. Again, an absolutely MASSIVE use of open source by the Apple community, with almost nothing given back.

Of course, you all have the right to do this since it is open source, just don't expect the rest of us to give you guys any respect as true members of the community.

Re:Aqua (2, Insightful)

pembo13 (770295) | more than 6 years ago | (#23327554)

I thought the complaint was that KDE looked like Windows?

Re:Aqua (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23327448)

I can't name a single significant open source project that originated as an OS X-only application but now runs on Linux, for example.

Anything originating on OS X is likely to be written to the Cocoa API, and much of that in Objective C. That combination makes it unlikely that the originator could expend the time and energy to port it. So if those projects haven't been ported to Linux it's only because Linux developers haven't done it.

On the other hand, things originally built using OS X, but not using OS X-specific features, such as Ruby on Rails, are everywhere.

Re:Aqua (1)

pattokun (834182) | more than 6 years ago | (#23327398)

Unfortunately the OOo team have made a huge mistake regarding Mac usability. They have taken the default Mac OS X keyboard shortcut for switching between language input methods (Cmd-Space) and assigned to the non-breaking space character. Re-assigning the shortcut in the Keyboard preference pane didn't fix the problem either.

Looks like multilingual Mac users may want to wait for a later version.

Don't Hate! (5, Interesting)

TheRealMindChild (743925) | more than 6 years ago | (#23326382)

I will probably get crucified for this, but one of the new features seems to be support for VBA! While this may not appeal to folks creating NEW solutions, at least we got a stepping stone for supporting old solutions on a non-windows/office platform.

Re:Don't Hate! (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23326460)

I will probably get crucified for this, but one of the new features seems to be support for VBA! While this may not appeal to folks creating NEW solutions, at least we got a stepping stone for supporting old viruses on a non-windows/office platform.
Fixed.

Re:Don't Hate! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23326498)

People won't hate you for your comment, though they will hate you for your nickname, playa.

Re:Don't Hate! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23327196)

We won't hate him, we'll just have a nice friendly crucifiction.

Re:Don't Hate! (3, Insightful)

TofuMatt (1105351) | more than 6 years ago | (#23326564)

I don't understand why people think that OpenOffice gets better the more it's like MS Office. OpenOffice.org seems to try hard to be an MS Office clone, but it's like the Linux distros that try to be "Windows-like"; Windows is the reason we want something else, so why are you copying it?

Macs, for instance, do looks of things differently than Windows and Linux, and people are attracted to them because they're different, not because it's just a way to do MS-things, the MS-way, with non-MS program. Until OpenOffice, and a lot of other Open Source Software projects, understand this, they aren't much better than what they emulate. The feature bloat in both Office and OpenOffice is gross.

Clones needed, references checked (5, Insightful)

moderatorrater (1095745) | more than 6 years ago | (#23326682)

Windows is the reason we want something else, so why are you copying it?
Speak for yourself there, cowboy. The pricing is the biggest reason that I use open source instead of proprietary, everything else is just icing on the cake. The biggest problem with open source that most people have with it is user friendliness, something that their proprietary competitors either nail or create (since they're the de facto user friendly program). In the case of OOO, at the very least they need to be able to replicate the functionality of the Office version to replace usage for complex documents.

I'm DMing a D&D game right now, and most people are trying to use HeroForge spreadsheets to build their characters and show them to me. Without MS Office, I can't read them. If there's a problem with character sheets for D&D, I can only imagine how many businesses and other groups have problems with OOO not recognizing MS scripts.

Until OpenOffice, and a lot of other Open Source Software projects, understand this [that they need to be different], they aren't much better than what they emulate.
In the areas that matter, they're very much inferior. Apple has been able to create UIs that are much superior to anything anyone else offers. Open source has failed to do so for 90% of their attempts. Unless the project is in that 10%, they could do better by moving towards the MS version rather than continuing what they're doing.

Re:Clones needed, references checked (5, Insightful)

sm62704 (957197) | more than 6 years ago | (#23327310)

The biggest problem with open source that most people have with it is user friendliness, something that their proprietary competitors either nail or create

Maybe that's why I love Linux and hate Windows. I don't need "user friendly". I need user obedient. I don't care if it sneers at me and insults me so long as it does what I want it to do the way I want it to.

Microsoft programs do what they allow you to have them do, the way they want or no way at all.

As an added bonus with Linux, it doesn't unsult me, while my intelligence is often insulted with Microsoft's "user friendliness".

I don't need my hammer to be user friendly, either. I just want to drive a nail and no backtalk from the damned hammer. Like Linux, it is user-obediant.

Re:Don't Hate! (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23326694)

No, people are attracted to macs because they're pretty and they're not windows. Yes, you have a few /. dorks who run it because it's "bsd with a pretty face" (never mind that it's actually Mach) but most people who run macs run it because it's pretty and because "zomg it's expensive that means it's good!!!111onehundredeleven" -or they run it because you can be a drooling mouth-breathing idiot and still operate a mac (it's hard to fuck up wich button to click on a mac, isn't it?).

People who use macs -most people who use macs- don't know jack shit enough about computers to explain what's good or what's bad about the way MS does things.

Re:Don't Hate! (1)

PeterKraus (1244558) | more than 6 years ago | (#23327236)

Yeah that's partially true.

Just only for the full reference, many developers use Macs. For example, in Computing Science department here, at Glasgow university, when you enter Computing Science department, 3/4 of the laptops are Macs. Coincidence? I don't think so.

(I personally use Dell Inspiron 6400 with, uh, with regard to my email, windows?)

Re:Don't Hate! (1)

Yvan256 (722131) | more than 6 years ago | (#23327240)

People who use Windows -most people who use Windows- don't know jack shit enough about computers to explain what's good or what's bad about the way MS does things.
There, fixed it for you.

Re:Don't Hate! (3, Insightful)

99BottlesOfBeerInMyF (813746) | more than 6 years ago | (#23326696)

I will probably get crucified for this, but one of the new features seems to be support for VBA!
I don't understand why people think that OpenOffice gets better the more it's like MS Office.

In this particular instance, this is a real and useful feature, especially for people looking to perform a large migration to OpenOffice and away from MS Office. Simply put, this feature means less work for people trying to perform such a migration and that is better than more work. That seems quite understandable to me.

Re:Don't Hate! (4, Interesting)

MightyYar (622222) | more than 6 years ago | (#23326738)

I don't understand why people think that OpenOffice gets better the more it's like MS Office.
It depends on what the goals of the project are. If they want to go after users of Office, then they will need to import - more or less flawlessly - from Office formats. Since there are 10-15 years worth of VBA macros out there, it is reasonable that you should support that part of the file format.

I know that I personally have a few GB worth of data in Excel and Word formats, and much of the Excel stuff is macro-enabled/enhanced. If OpenOffice did not support the Macros, I'd have to keep a copy of Office... at which point, why download and use OpenOffice?

Now, please note that I am playing somewhat the devil's advocate here. I'm a user of NeoOffice (even paid for the early access thing) and do in fact use both Office and OpenOffice together on the same machine - in part because I don't want to be locked in to a specific package again in the future. I was just trying to convey the vantage point that I think typifies the office market.

Re:Don't Hate! (1)

maxume (22995) | more than 6 years ago | (#23327464)

Would you mind filling in some of the details on how you ended up with gigabytes worth of data stored in Excel files? Or is it mostly in word files?

I've done some work lately on a project with about 10 megabytes of data in Excel files, and I already think it is a bad idea to store it and manage it as spreadsheets.

Re:Don't Hate! (1)

Abcd1234 (188840) | more than 6 years ago | (#23326764)

; Windows is the reason we want something else, so why are you copying it

No, the Windows implementation of these things is why people want something else. The features themselves aren't necessarily a bad idea.

Meanwhile, things like VBA support are *vital* for migration away from Microsoft products. Without them, people will continue to be locked in to MS solutions. So quite complaining. This is a good thing.

Re:Don't Hate! (3, Insightful)

idiotwithastick (1036612) | more than 6 years ago | (#23326802)

There's no reason to be against some feature just because it emulates what MS Office does. MS Office does some things well, and it'd be foolish to not implement those features just because it's like Office. Similarly, it'd be just as foolish for Microsoft to ignore the features that OSX does well just because it's made by Apple. Imitating competitors and improving their features is part of what makes good software.

Re:Don't Hate! (-1, Troll)

RiotingPacifist (1228016) | more than 6 years ago | (#23326840)

The thing is OO isn't really open source, in that its entirely built and controlled by sun, no community project seams to be interested in making an innovative office tho.

Re:Don't Hate! (2, Insightful)

mhall119 (1035984) | more than 6 years ago | (#23326974)

The thing is OO isn't really open source, in that its entirely built and controlled by sun, no community project seams to be interested in making an innovative office tho.
Aside from the fact that OO.o is not entirely built by Sun, there is the KOffice [koffice.org] suite, and the slightly less cohesive GnomeOffice [gnome.org] suite.

Re:Don't Hate! (1)

PeterKraus (1244558) | more than 6 years ago | (#23327312)

Well, huge amount of development was done by, uh, Novell.
And something can't be "not really open source". Either it's licensed under OSI approved license, or it's not - there is no fuzzy logic.

Re:Don't Hate! (4, Informative)

ianare (1132971) | more than 6 years ago | (#23327498)

I'm getting tired of this blatant lie. OO is released under the LGPL. There, end of story - it's open source.

And while sun does have the copyright, the community plays a role in the development process.
Furthermore, some other projects do use OO code, eg neooffice [wikipedia.org]

Re:Don't Hate! (1)

AbbyNormal (216235) | more than 6 years ago | (#23326874)

Its a matter of perspective really. I manage the IT of a small office who relies heavily on MS Office.

  I don't want something else. I want a clone of MS Office. I want to save money to spend it on training costs.

Re:Don't Hate! (1)

Kjella (173770) | more than 6 years ago | (#23326908)

Most people want better and cheaper, somehow same quality and cheaper isn't as valid an improvement as same price and better? Pardon me if I don't mind if they take the 95% of the market using Office first by being cheaper (and possibly better too) than Microsoft first, I'm sure they'll get around to fighting about the all important 5% that want to "be different" afterwards.

Re:Don't Hate! (4, Funny)

Uncle Focker (1277658) | more than 6 years ago | (#23327020)

The feature bloat in both Office and OpenOffice is gross.
Yep, in my day programs had no features and that's the way we liked them!

Re:Don't Hate! (1)

Colonel Korn (1258968) | more than 6 years ago | (#23327052)

A mature OS isn't based around the idea of being "different" from Windows. A mature OS is designed to work well. Just because MS does something in Office doesn't mean that OO shouldn't have it too.

Re:Don't Hate! (1)

Uncle Focker (1277658) | more than 6 years ago | (#23327144)

But you have to remember that Microsoft does everything wrong. *rolls eyes*

Re:Don't Hate! (4, Insightful)

KnightNavro (585943) | more than 6 years ago | (#23327416)

The more like MS Office it is, the easier it is for corporations to switch to OO. The more compatible with MS Office it is, the easier it is for people to use OO.

I use MS Office 2007 at work. I don't have a choice in the matter. If we start delivering documents in any other format, our clients will have a conniption fit. If we can't open a Word file because our office suite isn't perfectly compatible with the file, we have a major problem.

Unfortunately, I sometimes have to take my work home with me, where I don't want to pay the MS tax. The more easily I can work with Word and Excel files with OO on my home computer, the happier I am. The more OO screws up my cell formatting and causes things to print incorrectly, the more likely I am to turn to the dark side at home.

Before anybody brings it up, no, it's not an option to explain to our clients that open source and implementing open standards is the way to go. We get files from governments at all levels and work for dozens of different clients. Most of them are a hell of a lot bigger than us and won't care if some engineering consulting company thinks an open program is better. Changing office suites is a big deal to some companies. Just look at the feedback MS got for changing to ribbons in Office 2007. People bitched and moaned that they couldn't find anything and it took a whole click more to do a something they had done in three clicks before.

Re:Don't Hate! (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23327544)

The GP post pointed out that OOo now is trying to support VBA. You then said you don't understand.

It's simple: there are a lot of documents out there with macros attached. If OOo gets compatible VBA support, suddenly those documents will work with OOo. Right now those documents don't work.

For example, I used to work at Microsoft, and at review time the HR department would send us a Word document with macros attached. Thanks to the macros the document was a little data entry form, and you could click on radio buttons to rate yourself. Now, a web form is a much better solution here, and I'll bet that MS uses web forms for this now. But how many of these macro-enabled documents are out there now, in current use by businesses?

The Word example is pretty trivial. It's more interesting when you consider a spreadsheet with macros. How many half-baked business modeling tools are out there that were hacked together in Excel with macros? And the guy who hacked them together quit long ago, and no one understands the thing, and they still use it?

So, in summary: VBA is important because (if it works right) it will make OOo a viable alternative for the current locked-in installed base of Microsoft Office users.

And it probably isn't just people hoping to steal customers from Microsoft who want VBA. I'll bet there are plenty of people out there who want this for themselves, so they can finally ditch the MS software and just use OOo for everything.

By the way, I'll cast my vote right now for Python as the "native" scripting language of OOo (and all free open source software). It's clean and tidy, which makes it easy to use for anyone.

Re:Don't Hate! (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23326618)

You are part of the rebel alliance and a traitor! Take him away!

Re:Don't Hate! (1)

snl2587 (1177409) | more than 6 years ago | (#23327354)

For the record, VBA is still widely used in the engineering world, and given the stubbornness of some of the people around me in the engineering world that's not likely to change soon. So for the rest of us required to use VBA but not wanting to use Excel, this is a welcome addition and one I have been toying with since they introduced it.

Re:Don't Hate! (1)

Arcane_Rhino (769339) | more than 6 years ago | (#23327568)

Nope. This is the one thing that has prevented my transition.

I will download it tonight and see how it performs.

Finally! (1)

Penguin Follower (576525) | more than 6 years ago | (#23326448)

Aqua interface for Macs.... not that NeoOffice is bad or anything.

OpenOffice Aqua Finally (1)

Foofoobar (318279) | more than 6 years ago | (#23326474)

Finally I don't have to launch X11 to open Open Office on Mac anymore. I look forward to the final release so that I can finally get everyone I know on Macs off Microsoft Office once and for all.

Re:OpenOffice Aqua Finally (1)

Zoidbergo (751725) | more than 6 years ago | (#23326748)

I look forward to the final release so that I can finally get everyone I know on Macs off Microsoft Office once and for all.
Of course the problem you then run into is having to compare this suite to Pages/Numbers/Keynote. Let's face it. Those 3 are good enough for most non-power-users, which is really the same market OpenOffice can hope for in the short term.

Any serious word processor users (like technical writers, etc) that I've met that don't like Word, say so because they prefer WordPerfect, not because they prefer OpenOffice. OpenOffice Writer isn't even a twinkle in their eye.

And is there even a real alternative for Excel yet? Keynote is superior to Powerpoint. So where does OpenOffice really have a leg to stand on?

Sure it's a free Office suite. I think more people are clamoring for an alternative to MS Office, whether they have to pay or not. Less of a priority to them is the price tag. It's a definite BONUS, but not a critical priority.

While I'm a supporter of ODF, and open formats (and even OSS in general) I just don't see OOo as a viable alternative for most users, or as compelling an alternative as other OSS projects (languages, servers, frameworks) are.

If they're Mac users, I'd recommend iWork. If they're Windows users, I'd recommend Wordperfect or AbiWord.

Re:OpenOffice Aqua Finally (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23326834)

Have you never heard of Neooffice [neooffice.org] ?

Re:OpenOffice Aqua Finally (1)

Foofoobar (318279) | more than 6 years ago | (#23327206)

Yep. Problematic. Has alot of issues. Openoffice is at least stable even if I have to open X11.

Taking too long! (0)

bogaboga (793279) | more than 6 years ago | (#23326484)

I am kind of tired of this OpenOffice.org beta stuff. In my opinion, this beta business is taking too long. Am I alone?

Missing change items (5, Insightful)

GeekDork (194851) | more than 6 years ago | (#23326544)

I'm missing the "complete rewrite of rendering API and functionality", as well as proper SVG handling (or EPS, or PDF, hell native support for any proper vector graphics format!), and other things that would keep Impress presentations from looking like ass. What about uniform lines, circles that look at least remotely like circles, etc.? What about proper inline (and display) math typesetting? Instead of trying to remain bug-compatible with MS Office at all cost, they should perhaps think about, well, not sucking as bad.

Re:Missing change items (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23326722)

OO is too busy following M$ around to come up with anything innovative.

If you want good rendering use Latex. If you need help using Latex use Lyx.

If you want just a copy of M$ Office Use Open Office.

Re:Missing change items (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23327160)

Twitter, ran out of posts for the day? So according to you, if someone can't use a text editor in a command driven interface they are too stupid to even exist let alone use a computer? Great idea twitter. Now go and earn yourself a darwin award.

Re:Missing change items (1, Insightful)

Zadaz (950521) | more than 6 years ago | (#23326938)

Looks like you've got a lot of work to do.

Re:Missing change items (3, Insightful)

evanbd (210358) | more than 6 years ago | (#23327340)

Alternately, I could work on the code I know, you can work on the code you know, and the OpenOffice developers can work on the code they know. We all pay attention to user requests, and then we don't have to all go learn a new codebase every time we find a program that's missing a feature. Much more efficient that way, don't you think?

Still no Reveal codes feature? (1)

Viduliya (39839) | more than 6 years ago | (#23326570)

> I was hoping to see something more than just another MS Office clone at least with version 3.0. How hard can it be to implement such a useful feature anyway? I can't believe they do not get enough requests for it.

Re:Still no Reveal codes feature? (5, Interesting)

swimin (828756) | more than 6 years ago | (#23326678)

Maybe a bunch of users should get together and form a bounty on it. I'd gladly throw in $10 to have reveal codes.

Re:Still no Reveal codes feature? (1)

story645 (1278106) | more than 6 years ago | (#23326832)

Why not just code it yourself and submit it as an extension?

Re:Still no Reveal codes feature? (2, Funny)

Inda (580031) | more than 6 years ago | (#23327538)

I'll do it!

You'll need to tell me what you mean by 'code' and 'extension' first though.

pffft

Re:Still no Reveal codes feature? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23327584)

Ohh god me too!!!!!! Reveal codes is the single best trouble shooting tool ever to enter word processors.

Re:Still no Reveal codes feature? (2, Insightful)

MightyYar (622222) | more than 6 years ago | (#23326780)

I would LOVE reveal codes. Unfortunately, I don't think that their object model is like WordPerfect, where everything is stuck inside one big layer. I wouldn't expect "reveal codes" to happen in Word or OpenOffice... it would certainly not be trivial to implement.

Re:Still no Reveal codes feature? (4, Interesting)

Viduliya (39839) | more than 6 years ago | (#23327084)

I have not looked at any code, so I do not know this for sure. If you can convert the document on the fly to an XML like format then reveal codes should be trivial to implement. Heck, I would accept the XML in a another window/pane as reveal codes.

Sadly, I believe that the OpenOffice developers are thinking the same way, Microsoft has thought of MS Office. The must be thinking, all users are dumb enough to never want anything more abstract than WISIWYG editing with some useless hidden formatting characters shown.

I think Openoffice Writer is a nice product, it is too bad they do not aim to improve it beyond MS Word.

Nothing worse than having garbge/redundent/misplaced formatting staying hidden just to bite me on the next change on a large document. This is still my prime reason to not use OpenOffice (or MS Word) to create any serious document of a substantial size.

Looks like my favorite new feature isn't there yet (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23326590)

The ability to edit PDFs [openoffice.org] .

PDF Import Extension (3, Informative)

Futurepower(R) (558542) | more than 6 years ago | (#23326944)

Yes, is says:

" Available Soon... PDF Import Extension
The PDF Import Extension allows modifying existing PDF files for which the original source files do not exist anymore. "


However, that was August 2007 [sun.com] .

*STILL* no outline mode. (5, Interesting)

xeno (2667) | more than 6 years ago | (#23326700)

Ugh. I sound like a broken record: Every OOo update, I hope that the OOo developers will add an outline mode to Writer. And every release I'm disappointed. I really like OOo, but this one missing feature keeps me from using it for serious work becuase it makes large document planning and writing production in Writer sloooooow. It's been requested of the OOo team quite a few times over the past 4-5 years. ODF intuitively matches this concept, but implementing it apparently requires some nontrivial change to the Writer codebase. And a little more enthusiasm by those who could code it (wish I could). If I could direct my OOo donation to this one feature, I'd give $XXX instead of my paltry $XX donation. There's some background available here: http://serendipity.ruwenzori.net/index.php/category/writing

And to quote myself (http://tech.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=322381&cid=20912291): "...before some n00b who's never written a 200-page document jumps all over me: No, the OOo "Navigator" does not provide an outline mode. It provides something akin to a re-organizable TOC in a floating window, but it doesn't provide the productivity enhancements afforded by inline hierarchical control within the editing window. This is one function that MS Word got right. For example, in Word I can start typing and make a list in normal text, click into "outline mode" and either use a key shortcut or a single click-drag to promote/demote some text to headings (while leaving other items as content), or re-order paragraphs of text or headings. To do the same thing in OOo's Navigator, I need to switch to a different window to reorganize headings, but switch back to the editing window to resume editing content. I also need to switch between two windows to split a heading into two sections, switch back to move it, and switch again to resume composing content -- something I can do with a CR and single mouse-drag in Word.

Word: type, type, drag, type, type, [enter], key-combo, type.
OOo: type, type, switch-window, drag, switch-window, type, type, re-style, switch-window, drag, switch-window, type.

Come on guys, suck up the Not-Invented-Here pride and adopt this one feature that MS got right! Or do it one-better and improve on the similar inline hierarchical editing from FrameMaker+SGML. Or innovate some collapsible tag interface from something like the old HotMeTaL from SoftQuad. (But don't trash the Navigator; it *is* useful for final proofing, just not composition)

Re:*STILL* no outline mode. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23326890)

You should take a look at this bug:
http://www.openoffice.org/issues/show_bug.cgi?id=3959 [openoffice.org]

And if you really want an outline mode, please go vote for it! Really, popularity is considered when features are added to OOo.

Re:*STILL* no outline mode. (5, Informative)

BigJim.fr (40893) | more than 6 years ago | (#23327016)

Lack of outline mode is bug nÂ3959 [openoffice.org] and if you had as much as skimmed its content you would know why it is taking longer to develop than you think it should.

Everyone agrees it is important, everyone is impatient, the developers know all about it, but it is not a trivial hack, so it will take resources and therefore time.

Re:*STILL* no outline mode. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23327032)

Ditto, I've been waiting for -years-. Please, please do a proper outline mode.

Re:*STILL* no outline mode. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23327390)

I'll add my vote for an outline mode...it's the main reason I'm still using Word.

How does 3.0 beta compare with go-oo? (1)

Dwedit (232252) | more than 6 years ago | (#23326736)

So how exactly does the 3.0 beta release compare with Go-Openoffice.org 2.4 [go-oo.org] ?

track changes! (1)

story645 (1278106) | more than 6 years ago | (#23326816)

The improvement in the collaboration/review/track changes is what I'm most thrilled about-previous versions have been so lousy as to be unusable (doing in text comments was faster/easier/clearer to the reader) so this new change looks so promising. I don't care if it's MS cloning-this was my main reason for considering buying MS.

Re:track changes! (1)

AndGodSed (968378) | more than 6 years ago | (#23327102)

MS cloning is not necessarily a bad thing. If one can offer for free a better product than what MS is offering as a paid for product you are bound to have people adopt your product.

The key being "a better broduct." For most companies that shell out for MS framework cost is a secondary consideration.

Re:track changes! (1)

story645 (1278106) | more than 6 years ago | (#23327214)

The key being "a better broduct." For most companies that shell out for MS framework cost is a secondary consideration.
Definitely-my lab tries to do as much as possible with opensource and coding it ourselves as possible, but we're buying office 'cause there are some things no open source alternative does.
Honestly, I've got no problem what-so-ever with cloning-just wish the cloners paid half as much attention to UI as they do to the features.

It doesn't matter (1)

MicrosoftElitist (1138973) | more than 6 years ago | (#23326858)

OpenOffice is slow and bloated. It will never measure up to Micosoft Office, which is by far a superior product. When you need to run a business get MS Office. If you want to operate like a mom and pop shop get OpenOffice. It's as simple as that.

Re:It doesn't matter (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23327288)

M$ Office is slow and bloated. It will never measure up to OpenOffice, which is by far a superior product. When you need to run a business get OpenOffice. If you want to operate like an amateur with no sense of direction while working on ridding your system of malware, get M$ Office. It's as simple as that.

Re:It doesn't matter (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23327588)

There, fixed it for you in the above comment. :P

is the remain hidden on save statusbar bug fixed? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23326878)


If you have the status bar set to hide, it re appears on save ... and if you want to hide it again, you will have to go through menubar->view->hide status bar ..

This is the most annoying bug to me and it seems to live on unnoticed ..i fist saw it with 2.3.1 when i started using OO ..i quickly moved to 2.4 when it came out hopping that it would be fixed there ..it wasn't...and i went on to use these beta builds and ..guess what, its still there!!! ..

there already exists a bug report for this but, it would be nice if it would be fixed before the final version ..

its kinda sad to have such a GUI bug and its really annoying to always click "Shift+S" to save a document and to follow it with "Alt->V->B" to hide again the status bar

Still low limit on Calc rows? (4, Interesting)

danaris (525051) | more than 6 years ago | (#23326962)

From what I've seen, this release still has the absurd 65535 row limit on Calc—the only reason such a limit was acceptable in previous versions was because MS Office didn't yet support more, but now that Office 2007 supports up to 4 million-some-odd rows, there is absolutely no excuse for putting that many or more into OpenOffice.

More than 65K rows is the killer feature that has gotten parts of my company to upgrade to 2007. Until and unless OOo supports it, there's no way we'll be able to use it as a full replacement for MS Office, as much as we'd like to.

Dan Aris

Re:Still low limit on Calc rows? (3, Interesting)

f8l_0e (775982) | more than 6 years ago | (#23327128)

I once read a quote that more than 65k rows was overkill and that if you needed that many rows, you should be using a database instead. If you're not under some kind of NDA, what does your company do that they need that many rows on a spreadsheet? Can anyone else chime in on legitimate reasons to need that many rows in a spreadsheet?

Re:Still low limit on Calc rows? (1)

chromatic (9471) | more than 6 years ago | (#23327210)

Can anyone else chime in on legitimate reasons to need that many rows in a spreadsheet?

I am the human. The software works for me. I do not work for the software.

Re:Still low limit on Calc rows? (4, Informative)

danaris (525051) | more than 6 years ago | (#23327330)

...what does your company do that they need that many rows on a spreadsheet?

We're querying data out of a database and trying to do simple processing on it (the type that Excel does very well) in the simplest ways we can, and present it to the bosses. Yes, I could write a Java program to subtotal all our payments by type and spit it out in some kind of elegant format, or we could spring for a dozen more Crystal Reports licenses, but the fact is that Excel does this just fine, and now we don't even have to use 6 worksheets within a workbook to hold it all.

I hate Microsoft, but I just have no way of recommending replacing Office with OpenOffice while this is an issue.

Oh, and by the way (not directed at you, but at the stuck-up git who wrote that quote, which I read, too): when someone says they have a reason to use more than X of something in your product, and all it would cost you to give it to them is (I think) changing the types of a bunch of variables, and maybe adding a couple of extra converter methods, you don't tell them, "No one should ever need that many! Only an idiot would even ask for that!" You either say, "Well, we don't currently have enough demand for that feature to be worth the trouble," or you just darn well do it!

Dan Aris

Re:Still low limit on Calc rows? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23327492)

Can anyone else chime in on legitimate reasons to need that many rows in a spreadsheet?
There are none.

Re:Still low limit on Calc rows? (0, Redundant)

mspohr (589790) | more than 6 years ago | (#23327380)

Use a database. I guess it's just ignorance when people use a spreadsheet for database functions. If you need 65K rows, you really need a database. Any spreadsheet is a disaster waiting to happen with that many rows.

Re:Still low limit on Calc rows? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23327410)

I don't consider MS having a limit as an acceptable reason for the limit to exist, and thus would argue that there is NO acceptable reason for having a 64K row limit. This is one of my peeves with OO as well, and would like to see this problem fixed.

Re:Still low limit on Calc rows? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23327518)

You're right about that being a big issues for certain businesses. One little feature that bugs me is when cutting out rows and then pasting them in the middle of rows above, you have to use a 'paste special'. Where as in Office you can do a paste insert and it will take care of it automatically.

Re:Still low limit on Calc rows? (0, Redundant)

ianare (1132971) | more than 6 years ago | (#23327570)

... and your company never thought about using a proper database?

Is it still designed for 1990's hardware? (1)

Mes (124637) | more than 6 years ago | (#23327024)

Or can I finally open a spreadsheet with more than 256 columns or more than 65535 rows?

640k is enough for anyone right?

Re:Is it still designed for 1990's hardware? (1)

99BottlesOfBeerInMyF (813746) | more than 6 years ago | (#23327508)

...can I finally open a spreadsheet with more than 256 columns or more than 65535 rows?

Yes, you can. It has been expanded to 1024 columns.

From the beta list info (1)

Colin Smith (2679) | more than 6 years ago | (#23327066)

This sounds more like a version 2.4 or 2.5 than a 3.0 release.

 

Still not going to accept OOXML Docs (1, Flamebait)

pembo13 (770295) | more than 6 years ago | (#23327186)

(Except for work where they provide Office) I am still happily going to return to sender any OOXM docs.

Is it any faster ??? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23327302)

Is it any faster ???

What about OpenType font support? (3, Interesting)

lorand (764021) | more than 6 years ago | (#23327366)

I can't believe they got to 3.0 and there is still no OpenType font support...

ISO standard ODF support (1)

dpilot (134227) | more than 6 years ago | (#23327526)

From TFBF (Beta Features):
> ODF 1.2 Support
>
> OpenOffice.org 3.0 already supports the features of the upcoming version 1.2 of
> the ISO standard OpenDocument Format (ODF). ODF 1.2 includes a powerful formula
> language as well as a sophisticated metadata model based on the W3C standards
> RDF and OWL. ODF is being mandated and adopted in a growing number of countries.
> In addition; ODF is being implemented by many vendors for many different
> applications.

When criticism is leveled against MS Office 2007 for not complying with ISO OOXML, even in the newest code level, there is the rightful counter that OOffice is no better at compliance with ISO ODF.

This appears to correct that problem.

Akte & Abiword (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23327590)

Bah, who cares. When does the next version of Abiword come out?!

Where's the 64 bit support? (1)

CajunArson (465943) | more than 6 years ago | (#23327630)

First the bad, I recently wiped out my Kubuntu install and went to the 64 bit version of 8.04 since I recently upgraded to a Core 2 machine. It's great, but the only 64 bit packages for openoffice are stuck at 2.4 (from Ubuntu). For an open-source project OO really needs to get on the ball with 64 bit package support!

I was using the development milestones before the firs official Beta came out and have been generally happy with the new version. However, the much advertised PDF import does not work yet and that would be a nice feature. I also have a wide screen monitor and the ability to look at two pages at once is a nice (and massively overdue) feature.
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