The Free and Open Productivity Suite
Released: Apache OpenOffice 4.1.11
Development digest
19th January 2004

by C.P. Hennessy

So whats currently being implemented for OOo 2.0?

The next major version of is currently planned to be 2.0 and is hoped to be released sometime in early 2005.

So what features are planned for version 2.0 ?
There are alot of features planned, many of them to help with the compatability with MSOffice, many to improve performance (especially startup performance), more usability improvements, better desktop integration, easier administration, and some extra XML features. The general concept document giving more context and a bit more detail for all of this is available in the Product Concept Document (OOo 2.0 is also codenamed "Q" similarily to OOo 1.1 being codenamed "Geordi")

The Specification Project currently contains over 70 document which explain exactly how these concepts will be implemented.
Many of these documents contian very specific implementation details with proposed screen shots, shortcuts, and APIs. You can comment on all of these documents, but be aware (and have a look at the CVS digest) that many of these features are currently being implemented. The categories available are : Writer(24 documents), Application Wide(14), Calc(12), (data)Base(10), General User Interface(6), Globalization(3), Scripting Framework(1), and Installation(1). There are currently no specification documents available for the other projects.

In Other Development News

Release of developers snapshot m20

The developers snapshot m20 has been released. Changes in most areas including new controls, a dialog factory which will be used to improve performace by loading dialogs only when they are first needed, many improvements to controls, continues improvement in compatability for MSWord files and RTF files.

OOo thesauri development

Giuseppe Modugno has written an application (called thescoder) which creates the files needed by the thesaurus in OOo from a simple list of words in text format.

The advantages of thescoder in comparison to previous solutions are:

This tool is already being used by the Italian Lang Project

Native Lang Translation Tools

The project has been working on the localization for several South African languages including Zulu, and Africans. Many of these tools may be useful for other native-lang teams.

Some of these tools include:

And of course tools to convert these back.

Dwayne Bailey writes:

The team also have started work on a portal to allow easier web-based translations and they have a preliminary patch againts OOo to allow it to use GNU Gettext for localisation. This makes OOo much more usefull and usable on a Linux in that new localisations can be easily installed and seperate from the main OOo build. Although this is not necessarily the direction that will occur in for 2.0 as this approach is seen as quite specific to Unix/Linux platforms.

The start of a grammar checker?

Many people request that a grammar checker be added to OOo, but as many would remain quite happy without it as they consider most languages to be much more complex than a grammar checker could really deal with. They say that in general grammar checkers give as many false warnings and many people also complain that they do not give warnings when they should.

However, as we are dealing with open source software, if there is an itch it will get scratched. As reported on the native-lang list, in this case Kevin Patrick Scannell, the author of the myspell-ga package for openoffice, has written a GPL grammar checker for Irish called An Gramadóir (and for those of you who are unsure that is Gaeilge Irish).

The newsletter

The mailing list is used to ask questions about using the OOo object model and associated APIs. Michael Hoennig posted the December API newsletter to the list. Topics include:

Developers Guides in multiple languages

The StarOffice 7 Software Basic Programmer's Guide provides an introduction to StarBasic and the API and provides a lot of useful hints for migrating from another well known Basic language to StarBasic/ Basic.

This document is now available in : English | German | French | Spanish | Italian | Swedish | Japanese | Simplified Chinese | Traditional Chinese | Korean.

Separation of icon set from build process

On the installation project dev mailing list there was a short email on how to deal with different icon set in OOo in the future.
The idea is to separate the different sets of pixel graphics in a zip-archive. This probably also means separating these graphics from the build process. But this conversation is not finished yet, so stay tuned.

Separate builds of 1.1.1 for Mac OSX 10.2 and 10.3

Kevin B. Hendricks mentions that for Mac OS X we are going to need to have separate Panther and Jaguar builds in the long run anyway. Right now a build on Panther it will not run on Jaguar and a Jaguar build will probably not run on Panther either.
If you are an Apple developer and would like to see on Mac OSX why not contribute a small amount of time and see how you can help on the porting dev mailing list.

MinGW + tcsh build efforts started

The MinGW compiler is a "collection of GNU toolsets that allow one to produce native Windows programs that do not rely on any 3rd-party C runtime DLLs". With this work it be should be possible to compile OOo code on Windows without having to have the latest version of Visual .Net tools from Microsoft.
A few patches are currently needed and they are listed in IZ#24588. If you want to comtribute or to ask a question the porting project dev mailing list is the right place to ask.

Multiple-Inheritance Interface Types

On the UDK dev mailing list Stephan Bergmann wrote to tell us about the Multiple-Inheritance Interface Types for UNO APIs.

This weeks Issuezilla summary

Many bugs have been worked on and resolved (as of Monday Jan 19 2004 ):

 No this week  Change from last week
Issues which have the status UNCONFIRMED 390
Issues which have the status NEW 952
Issues which have the status STARTED 1035
Issues which have the status FIXED 7585
(a more detailed set of statistics is available here)

Some of the more interesting developments over the last week include:

week 3 (2004):

Apache Software Foundation

Copyright & License | Privacy | Contact Us | Donate | Thanks

Apache, OpenOffice, and the seagull logo are registered trademarks of The Apache Software Foundation. The Apache feather logo is a trademark of The Apache Software Foundation. Other names appearing on the site may be trademarks of their respective owners.