Spotlight: On Developers and Technology
16 August 2001
H.Z. joined OpenOffice.org a scant six months ago. But in these six months he has contributed significantly to OpenOffice.org and has created a mirror site that offers multilingual builds (Chinese-TW and Chinese-CN) of OpenOffice.org code. Members are encouraged to visit his site, http://office.qkaka.com/. The following is a brief interview, conducted via email. I asked H.Z. to tell us something about himself and his project, and he generously acquiesced.
I have been on mailing list for six months; I am also Linux Star Office user for years. My interest in OpenOffice.org now is that it provides a structure that brings great good news to non-English speaking users, regardless of their operating system.
I live in China, in pretty rich area, but you know, people still can't afford a copy of MS Office, and the local Linux developers have a bad market: There are too few applications for the end-user. I think OpenOffice.org and Sun.com maybe could help lots on this. Furthermore, I hope this could be of interest to other local programmers, who will join with me in development, since so few people work on open-source projects here.
Externally, I spend most of my time on the Chinese-CN build, with the aim of studying it. My hope is that users from other countries and from other languages and platforms could help to make suggestions, such as which l10n translations we should work on and deploy. I have a small server online, on which I have set up a virtual host for that page.
Since 22 May 2001 there have been 120 downloads of the OpenOffice.org 627 Win32 build to China, mostly to Hong Kong. Because the Hong Kong government has made it a mission to enforce the law and punish software piracy, lots of users in Hong Kong have begun to look for a replacement to MS Office. I am sure that the Chinese-TW version will help to let more people know and use OpenOffice.org instead of MS Office.
Finally, I hope I could persuade PC manufactures bundle this office suite in the future. As well, I hope my work will give some needed assistance to the local Linux developer teams and distributors. I can help them with support and development, but we have a hard long road to walk.