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On 14/11/10 11:25, Mirek M. wrote:
Hi everyone,
I've been meaning to write this e-mail for a while now, but haven't gotten
around to it until now -- I hope it's still relevant.

The Next Decade Manifesto and the recent press release (available at for those who
haven't read it yet) open up a lot of question and comments:

"TDF founders foresee a completely different future for the office suite
paradigm, which - in the actual format - is over 20 years old, to be based
on the document (where the software is a layer for the creation or the
presentation of the contents)."

What exactly does that mean for the internal structure of LibreOffice? Does
this mean that LibO will be more object-oriented?

"In addition, each single module of LibreOffice will be undergoing an
extensive rewrite, with Calc being the first one to be redeveloped around a
brand new engine - code named Ixion - that will increase performance, allow
true versatility and add long awaited database and VBA macro handling


Yep - that +does+ sound interesting. Any time-lines given for this or the other improvements?

"Writer is going to be improved in the area of layout fidelity and Impress
in the area of slideshow fidelity. Most of the new features are either meant
to maintain compatibility with the market leading office suite or will
introduce radical innovations."

Can't wait to see it. I'm very curious as to what the "radical innovations"
will bring.


"The Document Foundation is going to be at the heart of the Free Software
universe, where users want to build a different future for office suites,
working together with developers."

It'd be great if TDF focused on integration and interoperability with other
open-source projects.


I'd really like to see Linux become the primary platform to focus on (yes,
Linux has a much smaller user base than Windows, but that will never change
if software companies keep favoring Windows). For Linux,
(going forward LibreOffice) is vital.


It would also be great if LibO, KOffice, AbiWord, Gnumeric, Ease, and all
the other open-source editors worked together to set standards. It'd be
great, for example, if you could choose a standard open-source font triad that
was bundled with all (relevant) open-source software (and closed-source
software too) to counter MS's Times-Arial-Courier triad (and the rising
Calibri-Cambria-Candara triad). Or if you could agree on the same keyboard

Personally, I couldn't care one way or another - I just want crisp and clear fonts and a suitable range.


"Users read, write, modify and share documents, and are focused on contents
rather than software features. After 20 years of feature oriented software,
it is now the right time to bring back content at the centre of user focus".

Does this mean that the ribbonesque UI that came out of OOo Renaissance will
be abandoned in favor of a more efficient and less distracting UI?


This is a great aspiration: the art of software design would be similar to the contribution the drummer makes to a song: reliable, robust, and not too much in the way of the rest of the music.[1] In the same way, in order to help the user focus on the content, the workspace needs to be paramount with the tools and options accessible and intuitive so that the user can get on with the work and not worry about how things work and how to accomplish common tasks.

And what I would really appreciate is a help guide that suggests *why* someone might want to use a particular tool (especially for the more esoteric options). This would certainly help expand my usage of the suite and tap into its power more effectively.



[1] Gratuitous information dept: metaphor inspired by listening to the great grooves of Grand Funk Railroad's 1971 tour with drumming by Don Brewer.

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