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Corel To Test WordPerfect For Linux

simoniker posted about 10 years ago | from the we-have-a-corel-icon dept.

Corel 426

prostoalex writes "CNET News says Corel will introduce a native Linux version of its WordPerfect Office product on April 15th . This will be a pilot project, as Corel executives want to find out whether it's worth competing with the other products (namely StarOffice and OpenOffice)." The piece mentions: "Corel previously produced a Linux-native version of WordPerfect 8, released in 1998, and offered a Linux-translated version of WordPerfect 9 in 2000, when Linux was still a cornerstone of the company's broader strategy."

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Lets hope Corel doesn't screw this up. (5, Interesting)

jellomizer (103300) | about 10 years ago | (#8745544)

as a Beta Tester for Wordperfect Office 2000. And even the final version it just stank. It seemed to use Wine to emulate most of the program and what didn't work in wine they reprogrammed to work for Linux. So I wouldn't say that WP 2000 was a Native Linux App, It just kinda Ran in it barely. WP 8 on the other hand ran quite well because they ported the Unix version and not the windows version. I liked WP as a word processor much better then Word or Star/Open Office. It seemed to well designed for word processing and it did it well. But the WP 2000 for Linux was to sluggish and looked to much like the windows version to fit into the linux desktop, and it required a lot of junk most linux apps didn't need and made loading on a remote X difficult (Which is what I did a lot in college when I was beta testing it because I like to work on the schools Sun Workstations with the Unix Keyboard and the 19" monitors) so when a good version of Staroffice came out I started using that because it worked well with Linux and Solaris (even though the install was stupid at the time)
What I always found odd was the fact that WP hasn't been ported to the Apple Mac OS X environment. They could probably do some good business because a lot of the time the Apple users only use office is because there is no decent alternative. Appleworks just stinks, OpenOffice is not quite there yet for the mac. WP would be a good more affordable solution on the mac platform as well.

Re:Lets hope Corel doesn't screw this up. (5, Interesting)

DrXym (126579) | about 10 years ago | (#8745630)

Presumably though you could build a Win32 app against the Wine libs. It would still be a native Linux application (not emulated), just that it would use the Win32 API, instead of GTK for example.

Yes, you could... (4, Insightful)

Svartalf (2997) | about 10 years ago | (#8745669)

The problem with that is that it's still:

1) A Windows app. It doesn't use ANY special features of Linux/Unix

2) Still slower than GTK+ for many things because it's abstracting the Windows API to the X11 one and has to do many things in an inefficient manner to duplicate Windows behaviors.

Re:Lets hope Corel doesn't screw this up. (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#8745634)

I just heard some sad news on talk radio -- Horror/Sci Fi writer Stephen King was found dead in his Maine home this morning. There weren't any more details. I'm sure everyone in the Slashdot community will miss him -- even if you didn't enjoy his work, there's no denying his contributions to popular culture. Truly an American icon.

Re:Lets hope Corel doesn't screw this up. (1)

jellomizer (103300) | about 10 years ago | (#8745656)

Wow I haven't seen this in a while. Ahh the memories of the first time I saw it and actually fell for it. I didn't actually care much to make a really big deal out of it. But later that day they had a live interview with him or something like and I went to myself. "I though he was dead." Oh I guess I was tricked. Ahh to be young and gullible again.

Re:Lets hope Corel doesn't screw this up. (4, Insightful)

droleary (47999) | about 10 years ago | (#8745637)

What I always found odd was the fact that WP hasn't been ported to the Apple Mac OS X environment.

It's not just odd, it's downright brain-dead from a business perspective. I say it every time I see a game get a Linux port and not a Mac port, too. The Mac desktop market dwarfs Linux the same way that the Windows market dwarfs it. It's easy to see that anyone who can be satisfied with a Linux desktop is also probably satisfied with available free office suites, whereas Mac users don't have the same choices in native versions and are further used to paying for such software. So, what, their master plan is to throw millions at something with a market that is maybe in the tens of thousands? This is just a stupid move, and someone at Corel should almost certainly be fired over it.

Re:Lets hope Corel doesn't screw this up. (5, Funny)

cubicledrone (681598) | about 10 years ago | (#8745670)

This is just a stupid move, and someone at Corel should almost certainly be fired over it.

No. People don't get fired for reasons any more. They just get fired. Look at the Apprentice. The suffering and misfortune of the powerless is sport now. Televised sport.

Re:Lets hope Corel doesn't screw this up. (2, Interesting)

mattyrobinson69 (751521) | about 10 years ago | (#8745697)

Mac is for home users, Linux is better for compainies than mac.

also maybe theyre looking at the future. if linux ever does become main stream, and i believe it will (so do they probably), they will have made friends with the linux community, have a product that people know works on linux, and people wont just think they jumped on the band wagon when it suited them.

Problem is, if the "linux will be mainstream one day" is as accurate as "BSD is dying".....

Mac Desktop market (5, Interesting)

Decaff (42676) | about 10 years ago | (#8745787)

The Mac desktop market dwarfs Linux the same way that the Windows market dwarfs it.

Actually, No. In terms of sales, both Mac and Linux desktops are each 3-4% of the desktop market. Sales is not a good measure of Linux though, as its freely distributable. Also, a considerable number of desktop systems are purchased as Windows and then have Linux installed, so the Linux could well be at least a few percent higher. Incidentally, this implies that MS Windows sales don't correspond to use.

Re:Lets hope Corel doesn't screw this up. (2, Funny)

swv3752 (187722) | about 10 years ago | (#8745789)

Depending on the numbers used, Linux is equal or greater than Mac use.

Re:Lets hope Corel doesn't screw this up. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#8745736)

I use WP2000 on Win98 to publish a nonprofit's annual report with pix, tables, advertising, narrative, the whole nine yards of 76 pages. It's just great. The print-to-PDF needs work, I use our printer's copy of Acrobat Distiller to get them the PDFs.

I also use WP8 Linux on Libranet + PhotoPaint at home. Works better than any version of Word, and the output is the usual WP, that is, beautiful. Even though the old Cowpland Corel was a bunch of marketing screwups, the product itself was good.

My main complaint is with XFree, no integrated font management. Gotta install your fonts into each program separately. Not Corel's fault.

I would PAY for a new WP Linux. After all, I PAID for WP Win.

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Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#8745566)

Problems with i18n'ed versions (4, Interesting)

yanestra (526590) | about 10 years ago | (#8745548)

The main problem problems with WordPerfect in the past were IMHO that the all (even i18n'ed) versions had problems with X11 international keyboard codes. There were some funny (or destructive) effects, and several key combinations weren't working at all.

You could say that WordPerfect was effectively unusable. As this didn't change with the update of WP 7 to WP 8 (AFAIR), I stopped trying. At that time, I got the impression that Corel was not quite sure about the competitiveness of their own product and preferred the option of letting it die slowly.

I hope that the people at Corel finally understand that there IS a problem and start fixing it.

To little to late? (3, Insightful)

rf0 (159958) | about 10 years ago | (#8745549)

Prehaps as Corel see that the Windows market is lost they are trying to made headway back into the Linux market when Open Office is the leader. Will it be back to a world of incompatible filetypes again?


Re:To little to late? (4, Insightful)

jellomizer (103300) | about 10 years ago | (#8745558)

Will it be back to a world of incompatible filetypes again?
It never ended. Just because most people decided on the Word Format it is just as bad as using a WP format and others. They still really haven't came out with a good Open standard for word processing except for richtext.

Re:To little to late? (4, Informative)

cozziewozzie (344246) | about 10 years ago | (#8745764)

Well, OASIS [openoffice.org] file format is nearly finished and open for anyone to use. So far, OpenOffice.org, StarOffice and KOffice are set to standardise on it as their native file format. As long as WordPerfect offers a possibility of reading/saving this format flawlessly (which is certainly doable as the format is open), they will score many points in the Free Software community. This would be the real signal that Corel is taking us seriously.

Re:To little to late? (1)

smitty_one_each (243267) | about 10 years ago | (#8745765)

OK, so why is the world focused on .doc and not .rtf? Is XML your silver bullet?
I, for one, have been luke-warm on the various open source word processors. The thought of buying (and I don't mind parting with cold, hard cash when there is product to back it up) a word processor that is feature-full (outlines?), reads .doc with some fidelity, and starts in less time than it takes to brew a pot of coffee is interesting.

Re:To little to late? (2, Interesting)

Dreadlord (671979) | about 10 years ago | (#8745574)

From their FAQ [corel.com]:

Is WordPerfect Office 11 compatible with other office suites and file formats?
Yes, WordPerfect Office 11 lets you share files with people and organizations using other applications and suites - including Microsoft Office. The flexible file-sharing capabilities of WordPerfect Office 11 allow you to publish to XML, PDF and HTML. Plus, enjoy support for many open standard technologies, including ODBC, SGML and OLAP.

So even if WordPerfect Office has its own file formats, it can export files to XML, making it easier for other Office Suites to open the files.

And there are HTML and PDF, which work nearly everywhere.

Re:To little to late? XML means nothing (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#8745607)

Saying that WP files can be read elsewhere because they use XML is like saying one IM program can connect to all others because it uses TCP/IP, or configuration files for one program will work for all other apps because they're plain ASCII.

XML, by itself, is not a format, people!

Yes, but... (4, Insightful)

Moth7 (699815) | about 10 years ago | (#8745621)

Using XML makes it far easier to write the code that reads the format. If you use an XML format you can't be acc#used of lock-in because if a developer wishes for his app to read your format then all he has to do is hook an xml parser and interpret it. Now take that in comparison with an encrypted binary format...

Re:Yes, but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#8745717)

It's easier to code a program for reading a binary file than an XML file.

And to be fair, you should compare an encrypted binary file with an encrypted XML file.

The only time where XML is an advantage is where the XML structure itself (or DTD) is used as a form of documentation, and the binary format is undocumented. But then, it's not the XML that makes it easier, it's the documentation.

Re:To little to late? XML means nothing (2, Funny)

Dreadlord (671979) | about 10 years ago | (#8745635)

If WordPerfect Office uses XML, then most likely the formats will be well-documented, making it relatively easy to convert files from one format to another.

If Corel don't want this to happen, it'll use binary formats and not XML.

Re:To little to late? (1)

cozziewozzie (344246) | about 10 years ago | (#8745769)

Wouldn't it be great if this XML format they mention were in fact the OASIS format. If not, then why not?

Re:To little to late? (4, Interesting)

13Echo (209846) | about 10 years ago | (#8745760)

Maybe they should have considered this a few years ago before all of the free and multiplatform office suites got to be as good as they are.

I would have paid Corel a few years ago for a *good* release of their software, but what they created with WINElib was just total crap. Now, we have OpenOffice, Star Office (free for education and research), KDE's Office suite, Gnome's Office software, and several other alternatives that really negate the need for Corel's software.

I could potentially see Corel's software as an alternative to Sun's supported software for business use. Howver, it is very doubtful that Corel will be able to persuade people to use this unless they convince OEMs to pack it in as an inexpensive alternative like they did two years ago on low end HP Pavillion PCs.

Maybe they'll be smart and support SXW and other open source office suite formats.

Re:To little to late? (4, Interesting)

tverbeek (457094) | about 10 years ago | (#8745761)

Will it be back to a world of incompatible filetypes again?

At least the WordPerfect document format is A) stable (WP6 can open documents created by WP11 without any Save As translation), and B) available to software developers.

I've rarely heard of users having difficulties opening WPD files with Word; the only problems I hear about have been going in the other direction... but Corel's gotten pretty good lately at overcoming the fact that Word's DOC format has been neither A nor B. The issue of file-format "incompatibility" is largely a matter of strategic obfuscation and FUD.

Too little, too late ? Hopefully not (4, Insightful)

Space cowboy (13680) | about 10 years ago | (#8745555)

I remember trying out WordPerfect 8 for Linux back when it was first released, and being shocked at just how awkward it was to use. The port had obviously just been a code-for-code translation from the original WP, and although experienced WP users would probably feel at home, it felt less attractive than writing in LaTeX to me!

I think Corel wants to expand their market share, not just port users across to a new OS; to do that, they need to compete with the others named (Staroffice, Openoffice) and not just turn up. IMHO Corel will have to have put a far nicer UI on top of their product before it'll get accepted by anyone not already a WP nut...

If WP9 was far superior to 8, then I apologise to Corel (and hope 'office does well) but I didn't even try 9 because of how awful 8 was. That's the danger in bringing an externally-developed product into a new marketplace - it needs to sing its own strengths whilst merging into the choir... Hopefully Corel has got it right - more competition can only strengthen all the players.


Re:Too little, too late ? Hopefully not (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#8745569)

> it felt less attractive than writing in LaTeX to me!

And we've all seen fat cyclists in latex and yes, it's a pretty disconcerting sight!

Re:Too little, too late ? Hopefully not (0)

evilviper (135110) | about 10 years ago | (#8745728)

it felt less attractive than writing in LaTeX to me!

I hear people praising latex quite a bit, but I don't know what the attraction is. Writing in latex to me feels like writing by putting magnetic letters on the body of a car... It's never a plesant experience.

wordperfect for DOS and DOSBox emu, thanks (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#8745556)

everyone knows any wordprocessor since the DOS days has just added bloat and instability

Corel still exists? (4, Insightful)

rm -rf /etc/* (20237) | about 10 years ago | (#8745557)

Wow, what's the point of this? OpenOffice has already made strong headway in the linux market, and from what I remember Corel wasn't that great the last time they put it out for linux. Given their dismal market share I doubt there is going to be much of a market on linux...

Re:Corel still exists? (1)

evilviper (135110) | about 10 years ago | (#8745704)

Wow, what's the point of this? OpenOffice has already made strong headway in the linux market

Wow, what's the point of selling nail-pullers? Hammers are already firmly planted in the construction market.

"right tool for the job" anyone???

Re:Corel still exists? (4, Informative)

GreyPoopon (411036) | about 10 years ago | (#8745719)

Wow, what's the point of this?

People may adopt this for the same reason that they refuse to switch from Microsoft Word to OpenOffice -- familiarity. Even though OpenOffice provides all the functionality the vast majority of people will ever use, they stay with what they are familiar with, and at rather high costs. There is a rather large group of users who "grew up" on Wordperfect, and that's still what they prefer today. If this crowd decides to transition to Linux, and the price for WP on Linux is right, they may choose to use it.

Now, my personal opinion is that this attempt to re-enter the market will be unsuccessful. First off, the number of Wordperfect users has dwindled. Second, the adoption rate of Linux on the desktop is still too low. My guess is that the number of Wordperfect users who are switching to Linux is very low (although not non-existant). The second barrier to success comes, as you said, from OpenOffice. But more importantly, Sun offers Star Office. With Star Office, you get all the features of Open Source (a la OpenOffice) with commercial-level refinement and the backing of a large company. Those who want free can choose OpenOffice, and those who want support (or don't trust free) can choose Star Office for a reasonable price.

I think the only chance WP for Linux has is if Linux adoption on the desktop gains some serious momentum -- probably exactly what they are hedging their bets on. That will allow them to take advantage of the non-techie users who are a little apprehensive already about switching, and promise them that at least SOMETHING about the new environment will be familiar. Good places for them to start are with Linux distributions that have made it into the retail space at stores that target the thiry- and forty-something crowds, as well as some of the distributions that stores like Wal-Mart are offering on their low-cost PC's. Another possible idea is to approach retail stores like K-Mart or Target, and then team up with a Linux vendor and hardware vendor to offer a low-cost PC that includes WordPerfect. Finally, if they can conquer the internationalization problems that others have mentioned, they may have a real chance for market penetration in some of the developing countries.

OK. I'm out of breath now. :-)

Re:Corel still exists? (1)

rusty0101 (565565) | about 10 years ago | (#8745748)

The "Point" is to see if there is a market.

We have been reading stories of cities, businesses, and occasionally even entire govornments converting to Linux at a variety of levels, including the desktop. Some of those entities very well may have been using WP extensively in the past. I know that there have been a lot of Law offices that standardized on WP for internal documents, and some of those same Law offices are possibly looking at converting to Linux.

Corel is very possibly thinking that there is a large enough population of people who have used their products in the past, who would be interested in continuing to use their products, that they may have a viable market.

I don't know, but I think their idea of putting a product out to see if there is a viable market is a lot better than writing it off as not worth the effort, which seems to be a more common attitude.


Re:Corel still exists? (1)

blackbear (587044) | about 10 years ago | (#8745767)

I bought some Corel stock back when they were botching their Linux strategy. I thought they might be able to pull it off. Guess not. I also bought Corel office. Another bad move.

That won't happen again. The product was unstable and slow. And I barely got the stock sold for what I paid, before it tanked. I no longer trust Corel to run their company profitably, and I seriously doubt that they can put out even moderately good software any more. After all, they didn't create WP. They purchased it.

Besides, OOo is much better than WP Office ever was. OOo is a key part of my business and I find that I'm very productive because such good tools are available.

Welcome Corel! (3, Insightful)

Hekatchu (684465) | about 10 years ago | (#8745561)

Definitely worth of competiting, even with OO and Star Office in the field. More competition means more innovation ... competition in Linux market may also boost creativity in other markets more important to Corel at the moment ... you never know until you try.

Can it check your msil? (4, Funny)

Yonkeltron (720465) | about 10 years ago | (#8745562)

Yeah but can it check your mail, manage your datebook, provide emotional support, evaluate elisp, surf the web, read Usenet and fix your car like Emacs can?

YUO = TEH SUX0RS (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#8745576)

teh wors joke i haev ever herd. i fully intend to do yuor butt

Re:YUO = TEH SUX0RS (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#8745617)

teh wors joke i haev ever herd. i fully intend to do yuor butt

Yeah, but I hear that even when you're "fully intended" you don't have much reach.

Re:YUO = TEH SUX0RS (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#8745619)

..and you obviously need Word Perfect for the spellchecker.

Re:Can it check your msil? (1)

MrRTFM (740877) | about 10 years ago | (#8745654)

hmmm. I'm looking for a phone that does all these things.

Maybe emacs is the answer to my problem :)

Re:Can it check your msil? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#8745655)

Have you ever *tried* change your spark plugs with EMACS? The hexnut.el macro just isn't deep enough, and keeps getting hooked in the wires and yanking off the alternator cap!

Re:Can it check your msil? (1)

bigbaloney (767817) | about 10 years ago | (#8745673)

Additionally, can it be used as a Sybase client? If not, I am sticking to Emacs until it can.

April Fool (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#8745564)

Ha ha ha, real good one guys, is this idiot holiday OVER YET?

One Major advantage. (4, Interesting)

jellomizer (103300) | about 10 years ago | (#8745567)

Lawyers tend to use WP verses the rest of the world. So perhaps that could get the lawyers to switch to Linux and like Linux then we could have a powerful allies who can say IAAL.


Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#8745577)

and .sig is an advert

Parent = Dickhead. (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#8745624)

Say something obvious, get marked interesting. Say something unfunny, get marked funny. Say something droll, get marked insightful. Say something stupid, get marked informative. Say something truthfully, get marked troll. Say your opinion, get marked flamebait. And inevitably, make a reference to something in the article, get marked offtopic.

Ahhh, this place definitely grows on you.

Re:One Major advantage. (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#8745633)

Lawyers used to use WP. With Office coming standard with new computers and the US Government (especially DOJ) shifting to Word, MS Word is becoming more of the standard. Corel had a very good and devoted user base with the legal community, but seems to have lost it the last few years.

The retraining is being done. People are migrating. It would be harder to remain with WP when the focus is on Word in that community.

Re:One Major advantage. (1)

jellomizer (103300) | about 10 years ago | (#8745666)

But the lawyers are bitching the hole way.

Re:One Major advantage. (4, Interesting)

Some Bitch (645438) | about 10 years ago | (#8745783)

Lawyers use Word Perfect because it counts words properly, unlike Word which excludes footnotes etc. When a judge says he wants a 2000 word brief he does not mean 2000 words plus 500 words of footnotes. Word can be configured to do this properly but by default it does not. See here [findlaw.com] for full details.

Just wondering (2, Interesting)

Underholdning (758194) | about 10 years ago | (#8745568)

Ok, I always welcome new serious products for Linux, but this seems very odd. WP doesn't even sell well in the win32 version. What makes them think it will be any different on Linux? Just wondering

Re:Just wondering (1)

flossie (135232) | about 10 years ago | (#8745593)

WP doesn't even sell well in the win32 version. What makes them think it will be any different on Linux?

They don't have to compete with Microsoft Office.

Re:Just wondering (1)

iwein (561027) | about 10 years ago | (#8745639)

yeah, but they have to compete with that hilarious paperclip though...

lets start with the word milk. and sponge, i like sponges.

source [deanliou.com]

Native? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#8745584)

Does that means xlib, qt or gtk?

WP 5.1? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#8745585)

I just heard some sad news on talk radio - Horror/Sci Fi writer Stephen King was found dead in his Maine home this morning. There weren't any more details. I'm sure everyone in the Slashdot community will miss him - even if you didn't enjoy his work, there's no denying his contributions to popular culture. Truly an American icon.

April Fool's Day was yesterday (-1, Offtopic)

beamin (23709) | about 10 years ago | (#8745618)

not true

Re:April Fool's Day was yesterday (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#8745623)

It's an ages-old troll you fucking moron, not an April Fool's joke. You know how long people have been posting that exact text? Forever.

How about Corel Draw? (4, Interesting)

Qbertino (265505) | about 10 years ago | (#8745587)

I'm one of the lucky few to get one of the last copies of Corel Draw 9 for Linux.
It makes up for one of the largest gaps on Linux to date. Professional grafics tools.
It's also heavyly base on Wine, but it runs smooth and over the course of the last 2 years I've done some serious work with it.
I'd wish Corel would join with Trolltec and start porting their apps to QT, making them copmletely plattform agnostic. A lot of people would be willing to make the switch from Macromedia and Adobe back to a solid Draw and Photo Paint if only they would run on Linux.

Re:How about Corel Draw? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#8745620)

Now all we need is professional spell checking software...

Re:How about Corel Draw? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#8745713)

Or professional therapy for anal-retentitve trolls who just can't help but criticize and/or correct everyone else all the time.

Re:How about Corel Draw? (1)

Spacejock (727523) | about 10 years ago | (#8745681)

I'd be in on that. One of the few apps I use on Windows is Corel Draw 9. I've been using Corel since version 2, so I really have no desire to learn another program, although I update scribus and sodipodi the minute a new version comes out.

On a related note, does anyone know why Wine gives this error on the Windows version of Corel Draw?

X Error of failed request: BadDrawable (invalid Pixmap or Window parameter)
Major opcode of failed request: 70 (X_PolyFillRectangle)
Resource id in failed request: 0x3600102
Serial number of failed request: 3918
Current serial number in output stream: 3977

Re:How about Corel Draw? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#8745746)

switch from Macromedia and Adobe back to a solid Draw and Photo Paint if only they would run on Linux.

I have only 4 words.

Gnu Image Manipulation Program


Re:How about Corel Draw? (3, Interesting)

Lumpy (12016) | about 10 years ago | (#8745753)

I also agree with you, I have one of those rare copies of Corel Draw for linux. And it is purely stupid for Croel to even try to compete in the Windows market. There are way too many big-guys in the windows market that will crush them like a bug (and have been)

corel could become big by making apps for linux that are sorely needed. wordperfect and the wordperfect suite are not sorely needed, to compete with a OSS and free package is pure suicide under linux. they need to fill the gaps that are there or are filled with really low quality or very very early but being developed super slow. Graphics and Video editing along with a desktop publishing is a place they could explode and ride the wave. video editing on linux is toy-like at best and wirks fine for someone messing with home movies or cutting commercials. trying to edit a full length feature or anything serious is impossible as the tools are not there or are very early alpha. Desk top publishing, there is one app for that and it doesn't compile on most distros without a dependancy hell that nobody but the linux experts are willing to tackle. Gimp 2.0 is a super step foreward but it is moving very slow and does not fill the need for a pure DRAWING app specifically a vector drawing app like corel draw.

I highly doubt that corel wil have the chutzpa to step up to the plate and make the decisions needed to try and become the company they once were in the late 80's early 90's.

April 1 (too good to be true) (1)

tomrud (471930) | about 10 years ago | (#8745588)

Does anybody have a non April 1 confirmation on this?

I have read two annuncements on this and both were date April 1.
Personally I think it sounds "too good to be true". Maybe it is?

Re:April 1 (too good to be true) (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#8745726)

"Too good to be true"? We already had WP a few years ago, and it sucked so bad that some of us went back to /bin/vi and troff!!!

I also thought "april fools" when I read it, simply because they already did that. Nobody liked the result.

Give me WP 5.1 for Linux (4, Interesting)

Moderation abuser (184013) | about 10 years ago | (#8745589)

I can get *serious* amounts of work done with WP5.1. Everything since has been downhill. So how well does the classic mode work on WP11?

Re:Give me WP 5.1 for Linux (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#8745602)

um, see my post "wordperfect for dos and dosbox emu" (LINUX VERSION AVAILABLE)

Re:Give me WP 5.1 for Linux (2, Insightful)

gator_linux (49553) | about 10 years ago | (#8745685)

This is being moderated as funny but I think active posters are generally too young to realize what great software WP5.1 is. You had to memorize shortcuts (or use some paper cutouts as reminders) but you learned those quickly and productivity was excellent.

Nobody worried too much about formatting, you were typin content.

Re:Give me WP 5.1 for Linux (1)

lintux (125434) | about 10 years ago | (#8745688)

When I heard about the WP5.1 classic mode, I (and especially my mother) was quite interested. So I downloaded a demo from Corel and installed it, and was quite disappointed.

All it can give you is a White-on-Blue screen with WP5.1-like keybindings. But as soon as you open a dialog, you'll have to grab the mouse anyway.

It could've been a lot better... :-(

Why the animosity? It's a good thing! (4, Interesting)

rmm4pi8 (680224) | about 10 years ago | (#8745596)

Seriously, WordPerfect has a number of functions with regard to advanced document formatting that Open Office.org, for all of its usefulness, lacks. Plus, there's the ever-wonderful option to actually view the document code, and manually correct the hidden formatting bugs that inflict themselves on my Word and OpenOffice.org use from time to time.

It will also be a boon as I ease my mother's business onto Linux, since they interface with a number of law offices who still use Word Perfect.

Finally, I've had good luck with the WP file format and KWord, my preferred word processor (because I use Qt and am a bit lacking in the ram dept for OOo's liking), easing both file exchange with my mother and providing a convenient power-formatting application for stuff i've sketched in Kword (no, it isnt framemaker, but i'm a college student who has to write 30 page papers, not a doc writer). So i'm all for it.

The worst that can happen is that it fails, and since Corel isnt exactly a huge F/OSS contributor these days, that's no major loss either.

Re:Why the animosity? It's a good thing! (1)

leandrod (17766) | about 10 years ago | (#8745680)

WordPerfect has a number of functions with regard to advanced document formatting that Open Office.org, for all of its usefulness

For example?

there's the ever-wonderful option to actually view the document code, and manually correct the hidden formatting bugs that inflict themselves on my Word and OpenOffice.org use from time to time.

That'd be great, and even more if make an OOo feature. Perhaps that's already in some whishlist? Only that OOo and KOffice have settled with supremely verbose and user-unfriendly XML as a file format... hopefully they're using CSS so as to make it better.

In the end, the fact is that we already have nearly good enough free software, a proprietary package won't add much now. We could use reveal codes and some document filters, but that's about it.

If it didn't fly when they tried first, had a focus on GNU/Linux and there was no OOo, it won't fly now probably.

Re:Why the animosity? It's a good thing! (3, Insightful)

Aneurysm9 (723000) | about 10 years ago | (#8745684)

The show codes feature is probably the only good think WP has going for it. It can be a lifesaver a times though. Much of the secretarial staff at the various law offices I've worked at refuse to use anything but WP for precisely that reason.

Re:Why the animosity? It's a good thing! (1)

wine (211387) | about 10 years ago | (#8745703)

Seriously, WordPerfect has a number of functions with regard to advanced document formatting that Open Office.org, for all of its usefulness, lacks.

I would be very interested to know which functions those are. Could you elaborate on that for a minute?

Plus, there's the ever-wonderful option to actually view the document code, and manually correct the hidden formatting bugs that inflict themselves on my Word and OpenOffice.org use from time to time.

A word processor should be able to optimise the code by itself. Being able to fix the bugs yourself by editing hidden code might be quite nice, but it would far better if a word processor didn't ran into those problems in the first place. I've never encountered those bugs in OOo either.

If I wanted to look at the code, I'd use tex or docbook xml or something like that. I've used those for specific tasks and found them very useful, but a general word processing task should not need those tight control over underlying code. But that is just MHO.

format? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#8745601)

Is the wp document format more standard then the rest?
If not then well, we have ms,staroffice, lotus, wp file formats.

Re:format? (0)

the_unknown_soldier (675161) | about 10 years ago | (#8745613)

We all know htat the only relavnt format is .doc and we all know that until other programs can emulate doc files and not lose formatting office will reign supreme

This would round out the choices (4, Interesting)

krygny (473134) | about 10 years ago | (#8745612)

The only versions of WP I've used were version 3 (on DOS) and versions 7 and 8 on Solaris (and never used any of them extensively). But I think WP now supports the OASIS Open Office XML Format [oasis-open.org]. If so, what's to prevent me from moving seamlessly between OO.org and WP, depending on the job?

I think there's a market.

Corel Office (1)

StormReaver (59959) | about 10 years ago | (#8745628)

I bought WP8 when it as first released for Linux, and I had mixed opinions. On the one hand, all the WP features were there. On the other hand, the GUI was the bastard child from Hell; absolutely awful.

I very intentionally did not buy the version 9 suite since it was not Linux native. I would buy the Corel Office suite if three conditions were met:

1) All Corel Office applications were present and fully functional.

2) All the applications were Linux native.

3) The applications did not use that horrendous looking Motif toolkit. Qt would be the ideal framework to use for this.

My workplace uses Corel Office, so I would buy the Linux version just to be able to use it at work (I do all of my new work on Linux) instead of having to go into Winblows.

The Corel stable of products (5, Informative)

Bushcat (615449) | about 10 years ago | (#8745629)

Corel's always been a strange company. They've had products that have had potentially fine futures, but they've ALWAYS been as buggy as hell. I had a company that did wonderful things with Ventura Publisher many years ago, way back when VP was being spun off and relocating to California. It was robust and clearly authored by people who understood publishing. We did some seriously large projects with it, I even wrote a tagging preprocessor for it. We could lay out 1000 pages and it would look pretty good the first time a human opened the document.

Then Corel got ahold of it, and the added feature sets were late in coming but full of promise, but the damn program just never worked. We got accidentally on some kind of instant-updates-at-all-costs program, maybe because I was vocal on Compuserve at the time, so I can't fault Corel on the number of update CDs we received each month. But the thing just didn't work.

Our word processor was WordPerfect. It was wonderful around 5.1. I beta-tested its Postscript drivers and this was in the days when the Apple rep ran away because he couldn't believe a Laserwriter was being driven by a PC through the serial port. We loved WP. Then Corel got ahold of it, and we had to move on to a product that, well, actually worked most of the time. So we went to Word, but it was a struggle because everyone tried to use WP secretly. What's wrong with a "Reveal Codes" option? Nothing. Why doesn't Word have one? Because the people who design it don't use it for creating pretty language. But we simply couldn't keep using WP, because it broke enough files to affect our ability to perform as a publishing house.

We also used Xara, which was cheap and powerful. Bugger me, Corel got ahold of that, too, and killed it.

Corel's the sort of company that one would love to support as a kind of perpetual underdog, but the reality is that there's been something perpetually wrong with their development cycle: stuff just gets buggier, and buggier, and buggier until it's too frustrating to use.

I'm sure there's room for a Wordperfect-like product, but it's a real shame Corel is the vehicle to provide it.

Room for the proven formula here, though (1)

Phekko (619272) | about 10 years ago | (#8745715)

1. Fire entire development team
2. Develop good, stable word processor that supports open formats for Linux
3. Port abovementioned to MacOS
4. Market effectively
5. No need for ???, just profit!

Seriously, I always liked Corel products. I used CorelDraw 3 and 4 (I think, could have been 4 and 5) for quite a while. Yes, they were buggy as heck, but they were nice programs otherwise. When they ported CorelDraw to Linux I was extatic... for about an hour or so. Then it crashed. And crashed. You get the picture.

I just wish they would hire someone that understands something about software development. Yes, it's great to have a new version of your software to sell every 9 months or so, but if people stop using it, the porfitability suffers a tad.

I've got mixed feelings about this whole thing. On the other hand I hope they pull it off just to see another major player enter the Linux field properly, but on the gripping hand I believe their abysmal stability will kill this off fast and effectively. All the best to everyone on the team if anyone happens to read this. Please tell your boss the public wants stable software

Re:Room for the proven formula here, though (1)

hub (78021) | about 10 years ago | (#8745795)

Why not sponsoring AbiWord in this case ? It has almost all the feature you want, but really need some development task force, and marketing. It is even compatible with WordPerfect :-)

Re:The Corel stable of products (1)

kalidasa (577403) | about 10 years ago | (#8745743)

Exactly. I'll admit that WP8 was good, though (not WP7!). WP9 broke all of our embedded eps graphics, they failed to fix the problems that concerned us, and they pretended to support Unicode while working exclusively with 8-bit encodings. That was the end for me. It was downhill from there. The only thing that would save WordPerfect as a product is 1. a buyout from a company with a good reputation, 2. move exclusively to the Linux and OS X platforms, 3. bring the code into the 21st century, already: it's still a 1990s product.

I for one look forward to this (5, Interesting)

MichaelJ (140077) | about 10 years ago | (#8745641)

If it's a decent, usable port (ie, printing and fonts don't require a PhD to set up), and doesn't have a myriad of libc-version-compatibility problems (something that people seem to ignore, but is a valid, serious issue with distributing software for Linux), then I will be one of the first in line to buy WP/Linux. I started with my thesis on WP5.1 for VMS and for DOS. I used 6 for DOS professionally, and skipped the first few Windows versions.

8 for Linux was a bit awkward but it worked, reliably, and I enjoyed it until suddenly it wouldn't work anymore because of my libc version. 2000, well, I really liked the consistency of the Linux and Windows versions; however, printing was difficult and reliability was awful (most crashes were font-related, though, and I blame Wine for many of them).

Another post asks "Why WP when OpenOffice is out there?" You might also ask "Why OO when Word is out there?" or "Why Gnome when there's KDE?" or even "Why Linux when we have Windows?" It's about choice. Some people, myself included, dislike OO immensely. Why? Because it imitates Word, both the UI and the underlying structure of how it formats documents. I've hated Word and its imitators since the DOS version.

I'm not going to argue about whether or not Reveal Codes is philosophically correct or not. *I* like it. *I* am the consumer, and it's what I prefer to use. I hope it's successful; right now I use VMware to run the Windows version, but would much prefer to run natively.

Price? (2, Interesting)

sadangel (702907) | about 10 years ago | (#8745663)

I sure hope WP for Linux is cheaper than what they're asking [corel.com] for what they've got now. I love wordperfect. For Windows, it's my word processor of choice. My main gripe about OO.o [openoffice.org] is that it tries to mimic Word's organization and functionality rather than WP's, but for $300 (USD), I'll stick with OO. I think most Linux users are with me. Maybe they'll have a student discount or allow you to pick it up for a measly $20 when purchased with hardware like you used to be able to with WP 10. I'm hoping. I'd really like to see this take off.

Management failure (0, Troll)

dnoyeb (547705) | about 10 years ago | (#8745668)

Probably this will be written in Russia soon with the rest of the B shelf software.

5.1 was the best version ever, by concesus.

This goes to show that programmers are more valuable than the programs they produce. And that the "India pipe dream" is ignorant.

This is Timely (3, Funny)

ReadParse (38517) | about 10 years ago | (#8745687)

For once something is happening on Linux just in the nick of time. WordPerfect is just starting to make its mark out there on the street. It should be in a position to give Microsoft a run for its money.

It also looks like Back to the Future Part II will be a big smash this weekend and OS/2 should revolutionize desktop computing.

Looks like the 90s are going to be almost as exciting as the 80s have been.


Just a rewarming of old WP8? (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Bullard (62082) | about 10 years ago | (#8745690)

There was a story about this in LinuxJournal over a week ago titled "WordPerfect 8 for Linux Redux?" [linuxjournal.com].

I fail to see what the point is though, especially after Microsoft used their devious October 2000 investment in Corel to turn the then-Linux powerhouse into a submissive .NET supporter and last year Microsoft engineered the even more devious privatization of Corel using Paul Allen's money and a motley crew of former Microsoft executives, "joint Corel and Microsoft consultants", all apparently planned by Microsoft's investment and business development unit (which makes MS money work for MS business strategy), made infamous by the recent SCO funding revelations.

Is the Corel management perhaps finally under some kind of investigation and this "proof-of-concept" WordPerfect (wordprocessor only?) dealie is supposed to prove the new MS-leaning owners' credentials as "genuine independents"?

Will Microsoft be soon promoting a new Gartner study claiming that Linux productivity app market is dead because nobody is buying a recompiled and nearly 10 years old WP8?

Commercially viable? (3, Insightful)

gilesjuk (604902) | about 10 years ago | (#8745699)

Given the low cost of Star Office and Open Office is this venture commercially viable? Word Perfect needs to offer a much higher quality product to be good value. Star Office and Open Office use freely available file formats, does Word Perfect? vendor lock-in is something people are trying to avoid by moving away from Microsoft Office.

Better strategy for Corel is... (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#8745707)

Linux users will probably stick to OpenOffice/StarOffice.

They should release WordPerfect that is native to Mac OSX.

The geniuses at Corel will probably wait until they discover on their own that Linux users will refuse to pay for WordPerfect--by then Mac OSX will have an office suite distributed by Apple and their window of opportunity will be gone.

This is almost as stupid as Borland not making their C++ compilers use the same name-mangling & object format as Visual C++ (doesn't matter who's is better, go with the defacto standard you morons because there's no telling how many developers stayed away from C++ Builder because of .lib incompatibility).

OK, help me out... (3, Informative)

Scratch-O-Matic (245992) | about 10 years ago | (#8745710)

I have yet to find a word processor that I like for serious work that runs on Linux. I'm by no means a "feature cripple," and I do a lot of stuff with a text editor, but sometimes I need more. OO.org, in my opinion, is unbearably clunky and just weird. KWrite is fine for my own stuff, but not if I plan to give it to anyone else (in soft copy, that is.) Abiword or whatever it's called was about the same as KWrite when I used it a few times. I'm currently happy with MSWord for Mac running under Mac-On-Linux on my yellowdog machine. That way I get the refinement of Word without having to bow down to the evil master (or at least, bow down as far as having to actually try to boot a windows machine.)

Am I missing something? Maybe this Corel thing will fill the bill.

(and by the way, O.T., yellowdog linux + simultaneous OS X + ibook = Nirvana.)

Re:OK, help me out... (2, Informative)

X-Nc (34250) | about 10 years ago | (#8745768)

Abiword has come a long way recently so you might want to check it out again. TextMaker [softmaker.de] is very good if you want to exchange files with that other OS.

Google to electronically 'read' subscriber's email (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#8745741)

Google's Gmail Raises Privacy Concern [drudgereport.com]
See also LA Times [latimes.com]
Fri Apr 02 2004 00:33:23 ET

Privacy advocates are concerned that there's one big flaw with Google Inc.'s free e-mail service: The company plans to read the messages.

LA TIMES reporting on Friday: The Internet search firm insists that it needs to know what's in the e-mails that pass through its system -- so that they can be sprinkled with advertisements Google thinks are relevant. After all, revenue from those targeted ads will pay for the Gmail service, which began a limited test Thursday, offering up to 500 times as much e-mail storage as competing Web e-mail programs from Yahoo Inc. and Microsoft Corp.

The TIMES adds: The electronic letters won't be read by Google employees; computers will handle that chore. Nonetheless, the spector of seeing an ad for an antacid beside a message from a friend complaining about stomach pain is enough to make some people nervous about the e-mail service.

"There will undoubtedly be some folks that will see this and freak out," said Ray Everett-Church, chief privacy officer for TurnTide Inc., an anti-spam company in Conshohocken, Pa. The aggressive advertising strategy may put a damper on Google's biggest move yet away from its core business of Internet search. After reading the privacy policy on the Gmail website Thursday, consumer-rights groups began sending complaints to the privately held Mountain View, Calif., company and preparing to warn users to stay away.

"The privacy implications of going through and perusing a customer's e-mail to display targeted advertising could be the Achilles' heel for Google's services," said Jordana Beebe, the communications director for the Privacy Rights Clearinghouse, an consumer group in San Diego.

The consternation caught Larry Page, Google's co-founder and president of products, off guard.

"I'm very surprised that there are these kinds of questions," he said Thursday.


The file format was OPEN and it was great... (4, Informative)

crovira (10242) | about 10 years ago | (#8745747)

We used it to scan specs and generate a Smalltalk/V Win "Proof of Concept" on the CommonDepartmentalFinancialSystem I was working on back in the early '90s.

It was an open file format and I could strip out all the formatting code and parse just the content.

There were other things about that were good, like linking files and so on, but the open files were great.

Word Perfect had the greatest feature ever... (5, Funny)

Colonel Cholling (715787) | about 10 years ago | (#8745754)

"Make it fit." Many an undergraduate's paper has been stretched from seven to ten pages with that little gem, and it's so much more visually innocuous than the standard tack of big chunky margins and 14-point font.

I used WP8 on Linux... (1)

jimfrost (58153) | about 10 years ago | (#8745771)

I bought a copy of WP8 on Linux. It produced very nice looking documents (beat the tar out of StarOffice at the time, and Applix was just all around bad) but it was the worst thing out there in terms of actual interface.

Oh, the interface itself wasn't too horrible, but it had loads of very irritating screen repaint problems.

I hope they do better this time, although Open Office and others have progressed to the point where it's kind of hard to see why you'd pay money for an office suite -- especially for Linux.

I'd love to see (native GUI) WP on Linux & Mac (2, Informative)

bigberk (547360) | about 10 years ago | (#8745774)

I did use WordPerfect (I guess it was version 8) back when a Linux version was available. It worked great for me, and I still think WP is the best word processor.

People seem to complain when it looks like the GUI is hacked to work with Linux or whatever... sounds like something like this calls for wxWidgets (formerly wxWindows) [wxwidgets.org], since this toolset provides native GUI elements on Windows, Linux, and Mac OS X.
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