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Re: [tdf-discuss] Replacing OpenOffice.org with LibreOffice much easier than expected.






I have a few observations to make, as to future changes/improvements. I for one am very reluctant to frequently upgrade any major software application that must be downloaded and replaced in its entirety, particularly if there is not a published list of the improvements in the new release. This is why I do not upgrade my copy of Apple iTunes, particularly when it is an incremental upgrade, for example version 5.3.7 to 5.3.8 as opposed to major upgrades like from 5.x to 6.x. This is particularly true when there are components you could loose like the personal dictionary that goes with the spell checker.

Yesterday I finally decided to replace OpenOffice.org on my laptop with LibreOffice, even if I had to rebuild my personal spelling dictionary by spell checking 3 huge documents. I did as recommended and started by deleting OOo first, then downloaded and installed LO. What I was surprised to discover was that I never lost my personal spelling dictionary or the huge body of enhancements I had added to the Auto Correct applet. So why am I telling everybody on the Discuss list this? Because I think it might be a good idea to put a note on the Download page explaining that anyone thinking of upgrading is not risking all their personally added enhancements by replacing OOo with LO. Apparently these things are stored somewhere where they are safe from deletion when you remove OOo, and LO then will incorporate them, for full usability. It would have been nice to know that, I probably would have upgraded long ago.

I really think that it should be made a priority at some point to get LO to where "Incremental Upgrades" are possible, that is only the parts of the entire office suite that are actually being changed would be downloaded and installed, not the entire thing, and personal modifications, like settings and personal dictionaries would be left undisturbed.
I see now, that those personal modifications are in fact left undisturbed, still, it would be nice to be able to download only those lines of code that are actually changed, or at least just a single file for each change, so that a change from one release to the next would be a download of at most a couple of megabytes, rather than over 200.

I think that it would be a good idea at some point to do a survey of users to find out how many of them actually use only one of the modules of the suite, example Writer, Calc, Math, Base, and which one that is. For example, I use only Writer, I never use any of the other modules. So that if we were to find that a large percentage of users only use Writer, or Calc for instance, it might make sense to break those modules out and offer them as a separate program without any of the other modules. I know that this was frequently discussed on the OOo Discuss list, and the OOo suite was too highly integrated for this to be practical, but perhaps at some point this might become feasible with LO.


Finally, I would like to be able to help with semi-technical improvements to LO Writer, like getting a better word list into the Spell Checker, or adding more functionality to the Auto-correct function, like having it automatically capitalize all the days of the week, and the months of the year, as well as many other automatic corrections. I know that it only takes a couple of hours of adding things to the Auto-correct to turn it into a fair grammar correction function. It would be nice if ordinary users like me could be able to help with this kind of thing.
I have done this with my Auto-Correct, and would like to be able to share such enhancements with others.

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