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33 Developers Leave OpenOffice.org

Soulskill posted more than 2 years ago | from the onward-and-upward dept.

Oracle 500

dkd903 writes "We all knew it would come to this, and it has finally happened — 33 developers have left OpenOffice.org to join The Document Foundation, with more expected to leave in the next few days. After Oracle acquired Sun Microsystems, OpenOffice.org fell into the hands of Oracle, as did a lot of other products. So, last month a few very prominent members of the OpenOffice.org community decided to form The Document Foundation and fork OpenOffice.org as LibreOffice, possibly fearing that it could go the OpenSolaris way."

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Well... (1)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 2 years ago | (#34092852)

I guess that means OO.org is pretty much dead. Haven't looked at LibreOffice yet. Anybody got any observations? Is it that different? Have they at least got rid of the incredibly annoying registration reminder?

Re:Well... (1)

Joce640k (829181) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093064)

If you read the summary it says it's a fork of Open Office....

Re:Well... (5, Funny)

spun (1352) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093170)

Yes, there is a dead fork and a live fork. Oracle owns the dead one.

Re:Well... (4, Funny)

Sponge Bath (413667) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093242)

Reading your post in the voice of Morpheus from the Matrix makes it sound more profound.

Re:Well... (5, Funny)

Hogwash McFly (678207) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093292)

There is no fork?

Re:Well... (1)

clone53421 (1310749) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093402)

It’s just bits and bytes in the Matrix...

Re:Well... (3, Interesting)

Mongoose Disciple (722373) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093276)

Yes, there is a dead fork and a live fork. Oracle owns the dead one.

That's probably, but not necessarily, true.

From TFA it really sounds like these 33 people are members of the project but not members of the OO.o project that were paid by Sun.

So: will the free fork progress more than the Oracle fork? Normally I'd bet on people being paid to build onto a project like this at this phase of its lifecycle, but given Oracle ownership? Really, who knows.

Re:Well... (3, Insightful)

spun (1352) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093414)

Right, given Oracle ownership I'd say starting a fork is the safest option to keep the project alive at this point. But maybe Oracle will surprise us all and do the right thing. I doubt it.

Re:Well... (1)

icebraining (1313345) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093512)

Any progress made in OOo will be ported to LO, unless they change the license, so it's irrelevant.

Re:Well... (1)

gbjbaanb (229885) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093168)

one thing they have to deal with is the name, LibreOffice is, well, somewhat poor.

The Document Foundation website looks good though, simple and says the right things about community and values. Easy links to download it too.

Re:Well... (5, Funny)

Eponymous Coward (6097) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093328)

I would be careful about requesting a name change. If we aren't careful, we might get GIMP Office. The "orifice" jokes alone would kill any corporate penetration.

Re:Well... (1)

lowrydr310 (830514) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093386)

Oddly enough, when I read "LibreOffice" the first thing that comes to mind are a bunch of leather masks (Lucha Libra for those who don't get it).

Re:Well... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#34093472)

Endorsed by StrongBad?

Re:Well... (0)

cheesybagel (670288) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093308)

LibreOffice looks much the same as OpenOffice.

The king is dead, long live the king.

Re:Well... (1)

INT_QRK (1043164) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093518)

I'm using it on my Mac, US English. Downloaded very first day it appeared. The only delta detected is reversion to legacy (better) icons.

Bravo.... (4, Interesting)

Shoeler (180797) | more than 2 years ago | (#34092854)

Bravery in the face of a difficult choice. It's very telling when people who so clearly believe in the project and its open source roots defect in these numbers.

Oracle may yet be the end of Java too. Stay tuned.

Re:Bravo.... (5, Insightful)

Lunix Nutcase (1092239) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093030)

and its open source roots

You mean except for the fact that its roots are the proprietary StarOffice suite?

Re:Bravo.... (-1, Troll)

Desler (1608317) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093098)

Oracle may yet be the end of Java too. Stay tuned.

And they will be met by resounding cheers from the world. The sooner that shit dies, the better. Plus it'll be hilarious to see all the whinging of the Java weenies.

Re:Bravo.... (-1, Flamebait)

thetoadwarrior (1268702) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093218)

Oh joy a world flooded with .Net shit. That's like finding out you have cancer *and* AIDs.

Re:Bravo.... (1)

Desler (1608317) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093412)

I didn't realize that Java and .NET were the only two choices for programmers. It must blow your mind that people were able to do all sorts of programming tasks before either were invented.

Re:Bravo.... (1)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093460)

No kidding, for a board that hates MS, it's strange to see posters cheering the demise of Java (one of the last modern languages that hasn't absorbed into the Visual Studio hive mind).

Re:Bravo.... (1)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093176)

It's not bravery if Oracle shitcanned them first (or never paid them to begin with).

Re:Bravo.... (5, Funny)

vlm (69642) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093324)

Oracle may yet be the end of Java too.

"Every mushroom cloud has a silver lining"

Hey Ellison, meet my litle robot friend (3, Funny)

spun (1352) | more than 2 years ago | (#34092856)

His name is 4Q2. Yeah, 4Q2, buddy.

Re:Hey Ellison, meet my litle robot friend (1)

h00manist (800926) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093440)

His name is 4Q2. Yeah, 4Q2, buddy.

The robot has to be using the wrong encoding, or perhaps some scriped speech in a confusing language. It sounds like the proper name should be DTUR, or hmm, actually, I think it's FU2 or SHV-IT

LibreOffice will join the ranks of Linux... (0, Troll)

MouseR (3264) | more than 2 years ago | (#34092908)

...in no time, with 300+ variations. This is what I hate about OSS. The moment someone isn`t too happy, they get the fork off and duplicate the work and dilute any chance of completing the damn thing, rather than working things out.

Disclaimer: I work for Oracle but have no ties whatsoever to the OO group. I just want to use something that WORKs and that is NOT from MS.

Re:LibreOffice will join the ranks of Linux... (1)

revlayle (964221) | more than 2 years ago | (#34092944)

I know of this dude named Steve Jobs...

Re:LibreOffice will join the ranks of Linux... (1)

stagg (1606187) | more than 2 years ago | (#34092990)

That's part of being "open," and many consider that diversity to be a huge advantage. Don't even get me started on: "I just want to use something that WORKs and that is NOT from MS."

Re:LibreOffice will join the ranks of Linux... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#34093278)

Sound works just fine in Windows. Last time I checked, Linux had 30 billion sound systems... or something like that. Well, more seriously, the problem with Linux is the lack of a stable API. That's why there will never be a year of the Linux desktop (the way things are currently going). Both Windows and OS X work just fine in that regard.

Re:LibreOffice will join the ranks of Linux... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#34093528)

Just because there are 30 billion sound systems out there it doesn't mean you have to use them all (the ubuntu way), does it? I only use alsa and gstreamer here and I don't need anything else.

Re:LibreOffice will join the ranks of Linux... (3, Interesting)

lowrydr310 (830514) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093416)

I just want something that works, is NOT from MS, and is dirt cheap or FREE (even better!). When it comes to Word Processing and reading/editing .doc files which everyone still seems to use, I found OO to be cumbersome and not always 100% compatible with .doc/.docx files created in MS Word. I found Abiword [abisource.com] and never looked back.

Re:LibreOffice will join the ranks of Linux... (3, Insightful)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093042)

You can blame your employer for this one. The open source community is just making sure an important project isn't shelved by Oracle.

Sure, just like what happened when XFree86 forked. (5, Insightful)

brunes69 (86786) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093060)

... to X.org. Oh wait, that DIDN'T HAPPEN AT ALL.

When was the last time you installed XFree86? When was the last time you heard of any X aside from X.org?

Did you think it was just re-named? Heck no! Basically this exact same process occurred.

This happens in the OSS world all the time. The firm backing a popular open source project gets bought, does not support the open source project, the other developers behind the project all leave, the new project is adopted by every major distribution and has huge success, while the original project dies a slow long death.

Re:Sure, just like what happened when XFree86 fork (0)

JohnFluxx (413620) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093216)

And GCC.

GCC version 3 was stable and conservative. A group of developers forked it and created egcc - experimental gcc. This turned out to be popular and was merged back in and became gcc 4.

Re:Sure, just like what happened when XFree86 fork (4, Informative)

jeremyp (130771) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093418)

What?

Are you thinking of egcs? That fork was made somewhere around 2.7 and merged back in to gcc (or rather gcc was merged into it) at 2.95.

There hasn't been a fork since then.

Re:Sure, just like what happened when XFree86 fork (1)

Abcd1234 (188840) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093422)

<pedantry>Actually, gcc 3 was forked into egcs, aka the Experimental/Enhanced GNU Compiler System.</pedantry>

That said, your point remains. :)

Re:Sure, just like what happened when XFree86 fork (1)

Lord Bitman (95493) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093438)

"merged back" being the key point. The term "fork" is a poor one, because it has the connotation of never merging/sharing patches.

Re:Sure, just like what happened when XFree86 fork (3, Insightful)

gbjbaanb (229885) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093250)

its not so bads - sure, things get forked all the time... but that's nearly always because of issues with the original organisation. Once forked, one thrives and the other withers away (usually the original, but then, you could say that was going to happen anyway - or the inpetus for the fork would never have ben there in the first place).

Sometimes, the fork occurs for more political reasons than anything, but the forkers fail. Often that's becuase they had grand ideas that the original knew better than to implement, those overblown ideas being the reason the fork fails.

So, really.. this is all a good thing,. The openness that allows forks simply offers a means for 'ownership' to continue with a group that will nurture the product.

Re:LibreOffice will join the ranks of Linux... (3, Insightful)

Tharsman (1364603) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093068)

Although that can be true for many OSS projects, I'd say this case in question is far from "someone not being too happy", we are talking about 22 developers right now going to the same project, along with the ones that already were there.

Up to now I see no hints at LibreOffice going the crazy branching path. I would not rule it out, but for now I'll be testing LibreOffice, if I find it's as useful as OpenOffice then I'll be removing OO from my computers.

Re:LibreOffice will join the ranks of Linux... (2, Insightful)

armanox (826486) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093082)

After OpenSolaris met its demise, plus Oracle's reputation in general, I think many of us (including myself and some former Sun employees that are friends of mine) have added not from Oracle or MS to the list. KOffice and WordPerfect seem to work just fine for me.

Re:LibreOffice will join the ranks of Linux... (1)

Moridineas (213502) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093230)

KOffice and WordPerfect seem to work just fine for me

It would be really nice if WordPerfect could support unicode... Last time I checked it STILL didn't.

Re:LibreOffice will join the ranks of Linux... (4, Insightful)

MBGMorden (803437) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093084)

Linux might have 300+ variations (probably more), but around 5 of them really matter. Heck when it really, really comes down to it, only 1 types matter for desktop usage: Debian-based or Redhat based. If you're not on one of those you're probably adept enough to make something besides your typical pre-packaged stuff work anyways.

The same is true for almost any app. You're trying to twist a strength into a weakness. Many GOOD applications and operating systems have died over the years because the people running them were too stupid and/or stubborn to adapt. Open source gives the USERS the ability to take things in the direction they want if they disagree with the current controlling body.

The fork from Xfree86 into xorg is the PERFECT example of a good fork. XFree86 wasn't doing much of anything, despite being one of, if not THE most important software product in the open source world. They split it, EVERYONE went to the fork, and life continued on quite happily.

Would you prefer that we still be screaming at the Xfree86 guys to do something, praying that don't silently ignore us? If not, why is OpenOffice any different?

Re:LibreOffice will join the ranks of Linux... (3, Informative)

Anarke_Incarnate (733529) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093190)

AHEM...._ From the SUSE crowd. They are not red-hat based, FYI.

Re:LibreOffice will join the ranks of Linux... (1)

MBGMorden (803437) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093300)

AHEM - IMHO, they fall into the "If you're not on one of those you're probably adept enough to make something besides your typical pre-packaged stuff work anyways" crowd.

From a standpoint of commercial vendor support, SUSE isn't big enough to support specifically. They can get a generic package meant for Linux in general and then work through any problems that crop up via forums and online help

Re:LibreOffice will join the ranks of Linux... (1)

Anarke_Incarnate (733529) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093408)

Yes, but there are lots of SUSE installs, both in North America and abroad. They use rpms and are usually a supported OS of choice when Debian actually may not be.

Re:LibreOffice will join the ranks of Linux... (2, Informative)

MBGMorden (803437) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093526)

Ubuntu is a variant of Debian (which is why I mention it), and I see Ubuntu FAR more supported than SUSE.

Typically, what you often see when downloading commercial packages is:

Ubuntu (Debian) Version
Redhat/Fedora Version .tar.gz Make it work yourself Version (often source, sometimes a binary for closed source stuff)

I consider that a reasonable strategy. The vast majority of users fit into either that Ubuntu/Debian or Redhat/Fedora grouping, and the few that don't - well, you have to accept a bit of extra work to make things function on your distro. That's the price you pay for using something non-mainstream.

Re:LibreOffice will join the ranks of Linux... (1)

idontgno (624372) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093360)

Other than their package management scheme based on RPM... once upon a time, that initialism translated as "Redhat Package Manager". Revisionists at the RPM project have changed the "R" into a recursive "RPM" (i.e., RPM Package Manager), but that's just marketing nonsense.

Re:LibreOffice will join the ranks of Linux... (1)

Anarke_Incarnate (733529) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093426)

Yes, but their Slackware roots and against the grain ideology (to their credit and detriment) make them quite unlike Red Hat. Also, I think their support is better than Red Hat's support........because they actually......support you.

Ah, choice is a problem now? (2, Insightful)

spun (1352) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093092)

Why is 300 variations a problem? If the free market provided 300 different options in a market, economists would be lauding said market for providing customers with so much choice. Would we complain that efforts were being split 300 ways? Would we ask why we need 299 inferior versions of said product? No, we would not. When open source provides consumers with choices, people complain, and they do not even think about the hypocrisy of that position, as they would never complain about choice in a free market.

Please explain how having 300+ variations of something impacts you personally in any negative way. And how in the world would you consider Linux or Open Office 'unfinished?'

This is not merely a matter of a few people being disgruntled and splitting a project for trivial reasons. This is a mater of a fundamental difference between the corporate culture of Oracle and the culture of open source. You can't just buy yourself a seat in the clubhouse, Ellison. You need to play by our rules if you want to play with our toys. Otherwise, we will take them and go home, leaving you the box they came in.

Re:LibreOffice will join the ranks of Linux... (4, Interesting)

tjwhaynes (114792) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093100)

...in no time, with 300+ variations. This is what I hate about OSS. The moment someone isn`t too happy, they get the fork off and duplicate the work and dilute any chance of completing the damn thing, rather than working things out.

The moment someone isn't too happy? Read the history! Developers have been ranting about the closed shop that surrounded the copyright assignments required for contributing to the OO.o tree for years. The go-oo fork was set up as a rational way to keep track of contributions from people who weren't happy to give their copyrights over to Sun, and I think it's fair to say that most open-source contributors were more comfortable with Sun than Oracle. Forking a project this big is not something that developers take lightly and it takes extreme situations to make one happen.

There are plenty of examples of successful forks out there. Because OO.o version 3.x is LGPL v3.0, and I assume that TDF will stay with the same license, TDF will be able to take whatever OO.o adds, at least while the forks stay close together. However, unless OO.o starts taking code without copyright assignments, the reverse is not true. It is entirely probable that LibreOffice will be become the preferred product, at which point Oracle is going to have to make a call on whether it wants to work with TDF properly, or watch OO.o wither.

Cheers,
Toby Haynes

Re:LibreOffice will join the ranks of Linux... (2, Insightful)

jedidiah (1196) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093120)

> ...in no time, with 300+ variations. This is what I hate about OSS.

No. You hate OSS because it doesn't come from Microsoft (or perhaps Apple).

In truth, open standards should mean that it doesn't matter what "brand" I use.

Re:LibreOffice will join the ranks of Linux... (2, Insightful)

Anarke_Incarnate (733529) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093154)

Sure....Tell that to the Xfree86 guys. xorg took over and almost everybody went toward it.

Re:LibreOffice will join the ranks of Linux... (2, Insightful)

Crudely_Indecent (739699) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093158)

Because choice is such a burden.

Better to let the corporations decide what you need. Besides, Oracle has done a fine [zdnet.com] job [zdnet.com] with open source so far.

I doubt ODF and OOo will have 300 variations. Likely 2, the outdated OOo variation that has Oracle's name on it which hasn't received an update since yesterday will fade into obscurity, and the ODF variation that enjoys a healthy development community.

Re:LibreOffice will join the ranks of Linux... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#34093356)

just like 300 variants of GCC and X, right?

Re:LibreOffice will join the ranks of Linux... (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#34093380)

On the contrary, that is one of the great strengths of Free Software; you can't just buy out the owner and kill the project. If you cut off the head, it'll grow a new one. It won't wither and die unless it no longer has a will or reason to live - and since there is, as you say, still significant demand for a free, open-source, stable, cross-platform office productivity suite, the project as a whole will live on.

Even prior to Oracle's recent acquisition of Sun, some were apprehensive about Oracle's reputation - whether deserved or otherwise - for destroying projects they buy out (MySQL is a rare exception, so far, but many are looking at PostgreSQL as a safety net just in case).

The effect of a bad master is far worse than the effect of dilution. In the open-source world, all compatible projects can help each other, learn from each other, and grow from each others' work. Forks and derivatives can even help drive things forward when the pool becomes stagnant - look what EGCS did for GCC, for example.

Given Oracle's recent vindication of its bad reputation by its switch to aggressively destructive tactics with OpenSolaris and Java, the community seems to feel unwilling to trust it any further with stewardship of an important project like OpenOffice.org.

In short, right now, people trust Oracle about as little as MS, I'm afraid.

so the oss hater fud-monkey works for oracle (4, Informative)

rubycodez (864176) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093394)

Ubuntu, the failed fork of Debian...oh wait
Mint, the failed fork of Ubuntu....oh wait
FreeBSD, NetBSD and OpenBSD, the failed forks of 4.3USC BSD....oh wait
egcs, the failed fork of gcc...oh wait, it became the official gcc
apache, Brian Behlendorf's failed NCSA httpd fork

forking is bad, everyone should run Oracle's closed source overpriced bloated crap that can't be forked, eh?

Re:LibreOffice will join the ranks of Linux... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#34093424)

I'm a huge OSS fan, but sometimes what it reminds me of most is the Middle East faction descriptions from Life of Brian...

not a troll (1)

h00manist (800926) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093474)

I believe the opinion is perfects valid, expressed well, and there is no justification for being labeled trolling

LibreOffice is painful to pronounce. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#34092962)

And thus it will die.

Sad but true.

Re:LibreOffice is painful to pronounce. (1)

Hognoxious (631665) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093002)

If they'd called it OfficeLibre, it would avoid that problem. It would also be more grammatical. You don't say Viva Libre cuba, do you?

Re:LibreOffice is painful to pronounce. (1)

Profane MuthaFucka (574406) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093114)

I agree. My name is LEE-nus and I pronounce LibreOffice with great difficulty.

Re:LibreOffice is painful to pronounce. (1)

h00manist (800926) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093222)

Plenty of brands with names that sound odd in numerous languages do fine internationally. Yes having dozens of languages is a bit complex for marketing. Haagen Dasz, Odebrecht, Volkswagen, Mitsubishi. Unfortunately I don't speak Japanese, Chinese, Arabic etc to know how things sound to those languages, but I can assure you people all over the world get used to brands in other languages. Americans included.

Re:LibreOffice is painful to pronounce. (1)

KevinKnSC (744603) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093270)

I had this same thought. I maintain that this, more than any mis-attribution of credit, is the reason GNU/Linux never took off as a name.

Unstable (1)

Joebert (946227) | more than 2 years ago | (#34092978)

So when whoever leads this group decides to sell out down the road (don't say it wont happen, it just did...) does that mean I'm going to be left high and dry, again ?

Re:Unstable (3, Informative)

MBGMorden (803437) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093150)

Can't really happen at this point. Only the original copyright owners can "sell-out". OpenOffice was originally StarOffice - a closed source office suite. When Sun bought it, they GPL'd it. Then Orcale bought it from Sun. In that case, they had the original copyright, and the right to change the license at will if they wished.

The GPL licensing bit allows a third-party group to fork it and continue work under the GPL, but that's the only thing they can do. Since they don't have the copyright to the original code, then undless Oracle donates it to them (fat chance), they don't have any rights to it to sell.

Short translation: only the original project can sell-out. Forks can't.

Re:Unstable (3, Insightful)

spun (1352) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093238)

How, exactly, have you been left high and dry? Do you not understand how open source works? Nobody can sell out. They can try, but this is what happens. The sell out has absolutely no power to coerce anyone else into selling out, and no power to block them from moving forward without him. For example, see, uh, this very story.

what now (1)

GarretSidzaka (1417217) | more than 2 years ago | (#34092992)

so how long before they cut support for open office all together? i havent had microsoft office on my machines in a while.

does libreoffice offer windows binary

Re:what now (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#34093072)

I'm using the binary at work even now.

Re:what now (4, Informative)

MBGMorden (803437) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093206)

LibreOffice pretty much IS OpenOffice at this point. The Oracle-copyrighted artwork is just gone. They have binaries for Windows, Linux, and Mac OS X.

You'll only see the two grow apart as future versions are released. In short, they won't really be "dropping support" for OpenOffice anytime soon. They have an exact replica that will now evolve differently.

meh (1)

curtix7 (1429475) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093004)

better icon.

LibreOffice - please remove Java (5, Interesting)

assertation (1255714) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093006)

I love Java and have programming in it since Applets were the hot deal. It is matched by none as a server side language. However, being honest and not a fan-boy it isn't that great for GUI apps. LibreOffice people, please remove Java from Open Office. If you do, it will jump in popularity. Right now users have the choice of Open Office either performing clunky because of the Java based wizards or turning the wizards off, which people actually do want to use sometimes.

Re:LibreOffice - please remove Java (0)

gad_zuki! (70830) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093244)

Yeah, that would be nice. Its not just the admin stuff, its that Java VMs are notorious security risks. I think asking someone to install one is unacceptable nowadays. Write natively or

Rewrite the wizards. Don't push Java. Ideally, Java should be a server-side technology and not yet another exploitable hole for end user's browsers. Both Sun and Oracle seem unable to secure it and now are suing anyone with their own implementation. As a compromise I'd love to see Java install without web browser plugins by default.

Salaries and buttons. (1)

h00manist (800926) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093290)

Perhaps making it skinnable, with menus and buttons that can be rearranged to whaever order or similar to whatever program the user is most accustomed to would help a lot. Actually what I am most concerned with is the salaries of the programmers, I have no idea how are all these coders for such an important project paid.

Re:LibreOffice - please remove Java (2, Informative)

gstoddart (321705) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093344)

However, being honest and not a fan-boy it isn't that great for GUI apps. LibreOffice people, please remove Java from Open Office. If you do, it will jump in popularity. Right now users have the choice of Open Office either performing clunky because of the Java based wizards or turning the wizards off, which people actually do want to use sometimes.

One thing Java has going for it is that it (in theory) will run on all of the platforms.

If you removed the Java, then you would need to write the interface code for each platform you support. I gather that can actually create a fair bit of extra work, and make it harder to maintain.

Re:LibreOffice - please remove Java (5, Informative)

Lunix Nutcase (1092239) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093482)

If you removed the Java, then you would need to write the interface code for each platform you support.

The UI of OpenOffice is not written in Java it's basically a homebrewed widget kit written in C++. The parts he is talking about are the wizards that are written in Java.

Re:LibreOffice - please remove Java (1)

_xeno_ (155264) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093486)

If you removed the Java, then you would need to write the interface code for each platform you support.

Or they could pick a scripting language and write the UI in that. I hear that Python runs on Windows, Linux, and Mac OS X (the three platforms LibreOffice appears to support), so maybe they could use that.

Or if they're really attached to the letters J, A, and V, they could use Mozilla's JavaScript engine.

Both of which would likely be faster and lighter-weight than trying to use Java for UI glue code.

Got funding? (3, Interesting)

jcr (53032) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093026)

Just curious.

-jcr

Isn't this a good thing for Oracle? (3, Interesting)

assertation (1255714) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093034)

I don't mean to be ignorant or trollish, but isn't this a good thing for Oracle?

Oracle wouldn't make any money out of Open Office and now ( or soon ) they will not have the burden of it.

Re:Isn't this a good thing for Oracle? (2, Interesting)

gstoddart (321705) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093152)

I don't mean to be ignorant or trollish, but isn't this a good thing for Oracle?

I've been trying to figure out if this is a strategy by Oracle, or a side-effect they don't really care about.

Oracle is only interested in things that make them money. Something free, not so much. Now, we know they want Java because they've invested a lot in it. And, they want Sun hardware so they can have the revenue stream and ship Oracle appliances on a nice shiny support contract.

But I can't tell if Oracle is being ass-hats because they want to, because they're incapable of being anything else, or if there's an end-game for them in it. It seems like they're alienating everyone who works with the products they've bought at an alarming rate.

I'm not sure if gutting OO.org is good for them, bad for them, or such a trivial impact that they don't care.

Re:Isn't this a good thing for Oracle? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#34093236)

Or maybe it's because Sun was run by incompetents while the people running Oracle actually know how to keep a business alive?

Re:Isn't this a good thing for Oracle? (3, Insightful)

spiffmastercow (1001386) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093194)

I don't mean to be ignorant or trollish, but isn't this a good thing for Oracle?

Oracle wouldn't make any money out of Open Office and now ( or soon ) they will not have the burden of it.

Yep, and that's exactly what Oracle thinks about everything they bought from Sun (aside from the patents they plan to use to sue Google). It just sucks for all of us peons is all.

Re:Isn't this a good thing for Oracle? (3, Interesting)

vlm (69642) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093272)

Oracle wouldn't make any money out of Open Office and now ( or soon ) they will not have the burden of it.

They won't have a diversity of products anymore either. Nothing but an overly expensive database, being squeezed at the top by DB2 and squeezed at the bottom by all the open source projects. Eventually, inevitably, they'll go "poof" and disappear. IMHO couldn't happen fast enough. They are actually in the same position Sun was, squeeze at both ends until they go poof. Maybe that sort of organizational knowledge of how to ride a sinking ship is why they wanted to buy Sun?

Now if they had kept the office suite, they could have sponsored a MS Access clone-ish solution inside OO.org that transparently and trivially at a click could upgrade from something free like mysql to their flagship Oracle database for a backend. Or maybe pay to integrate Oracles feelers as deeply as possible into the rest of OO.org. After all an application that had to swallow java web applet language and "survive" could probably have Oracle DBMS shoved down its throat. That could monetize quite profitably, but now it'll never happen...

Competing with Microsoft Access? (1)

h00manist (800926) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093338)

They would most likely enjoy having their own Office alternative which millions of people run, with an entry-level min Oracle database built in, to compete with ms Access, plus clients for all their other products.

Re:Competing with Microsoft Access? (1)

Lunix Nutcase (1092239) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093524)

They already have such a thing: Oracle Open Office [oracle.com] .

Re:Isn't this a good thing for Oracle? (5, Interesting)

PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093382)

This happens every time: When one company buys out another, they first reassure customers that it will be business as usual. Then they look for stuff to kill off, to get some savings to compensate for what they forked out to buy the company.

Ellison is not the only one who does this.

Kudos to the devs. (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#34093058)

Cheers for LibreOffice.

I'm starting to wonder how Oracle survives as a company. It seems like they promote themselves as "The company that kills off software".

Re:Kudos to the devs. (2, Insightful)

pak9rabid (1011935) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093266)

I'm starting to wonder how Oracle survives as a company.

Oh I dunno..maybe the $500 thousand they charge per company to run a few instances of their database software might have something to do with it?

.org name and branding (1)

skywatcher2501 (1608209) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093156)

As technically insignificant as it might be, I never really liked the '.org' in OpenOffice's name. Also, while we're at branding and such, I don't really like those triangles in the LibreOffice logos. Call me crazy, but I think those little details sometimes also matter. After all, people want to use aesthetically pleasing products.

Ellison payback (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#34093186)

Larry Elison was under the impression that you can screw people over for many years in a row and never have to pay for it. He bought Sun for the sole purpose of killing MySql. I said this the moment the buyout was announced and I was right. He's screwed a lot of people over inside his company over many years. People would build up a huge business for Oracle and then get fired instead of rewarded. If you go to work for Oracle ask for a MASSIVE signing bonus.

Umm, old news? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#34093210)

As far as I can see, many (most?) of these people were already publicly affiliated with The Document Foundation, right from it was announced.

Google should step in (1)

sosaited (1925622) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093226)

This seems like a good opportunity for Google to step in and sponsor some open source software. I was really surprised when I got to know that it wasn't even in the top 10 companies [youtube.com] supporting Linux Kernel development (Oracle was at 7th), considering that it uses the Kernel extensively in their systems. It is about time the companies that use and make money out of OSS start supporting some projects as well.

Re:Google should step in (1)

Mongoose Disciple (722373) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093354)

I don't see that happening -- they have Google Docs, why would they compete with themselves?

Re:Google should step in (2, Interesting)

sosaited (1925622) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093488)

Google Docs is a web-based service. OpenOffice/LibreOffice is a MS Office competitor with increasing market share, especially in Europe.

Re:Google should step in (1)

Captain Spam (66120) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093376)

This seems like a good opportunity for Google to step in and sponsor some open source software. I was really surprised when I got to know that it wasn't even in the top 10 companies [youtube.com] supporting Linux Kernel development (Oracle was at 7th), considering that it uses the Kernel extensively in their systems. It is about time the companies that use and make money out of OSS start supporting some projects as well.

Sounds good in theory, and I know Google loves the odf format popularized by OpenOffice, but wouldn't that run against Google Docs?

in a good restaurant ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#34093232)

they provide you will all utensils ... even forks.
last time i went to a restaurant and ask for a fork with my meal, the waiter
asked me if i read the EULA before entering their fine establishment ... naturally i left.

Re:in a good restaurant ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#34093502)

Go the fuck away, Michael.

Article title is misleading... (4, Informative)

Mongoose Disciple (722373) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093322)

This is 33 members of the OpenOffice project leaving.

They're not all developers. It sounds like about 2 developers and a whole bunch of tech support and documentation people.

Remember, kids... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#34093368)

Anything that Mark Hurd touches looks great to Wall Street and turns to shit for everyone else.

Example: HP

Up Next (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#34093384)

VirtualBox please!

Good? I guess? No? Maybe? Whatever (1, Interesting)

glwtta (532858) | more than 2 years ago | (#34093448)

Am I the only one with serious case of Oracle-vs-Free-Software drama fatigue? At a certain point I stopped caring about the projects and languages I used to think I cared about, and kinda wished that somebody would just give me an executive summary in a few months (eg "Java's dead, we're all back to using COBOL now"), so I can just get back to work.

Also, are full-blown office suites all that relevant anymore? Aren't the only places that still heavily rely on those the same ones that will never (ever) migrate away from MS Office 2000?
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