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2011/8/11 e-letter <>

A recent feature request prompted the strategic question: what is more
important, minimising bugs or adding new features?
Of course, the ideal answer is to do both (;)), but remember, the
question is to choose only one answer...

Maybe the dilemma can be solved differently for different features / bugs...

To shed some light on the feature request that I submitted recently:

1. X error bars for XY scatter plots
I feel this feature is really important and possibly not that difficult to
implement by adapting the code that already exists for Y-error bars  (but I
am not a code developper!) .
In my university environment with students and scientists, LO is not used at
the moment (LO is even not known by most of the 30 collaborators around
me!), but thing can change just with this X-error bar feature!
With respect to scientific graphs, the lack of X-error bars feature
restricts the potential use of LO to only (let's say) 80% of the graphs to
be drawn. This means that people need to use another software for 20% of the
graphs. If they need to learn a specific graph software, they use it for
100% of their graphs... and LO is not used at all (this is the present
situation in my professional environment).
Just adding the X error bars feature would allow to raise the potential use
of LO to at least 95% of the graphs, and LO can be used to  turn around most
of the remaining 5% cases. As people like to remain in the same environment,
if they would be able to draw more than 95% of their graphs in CALC, they
would also treat their data directly in Calc spreadsheets, and then they
would also discover that Writer and Impress are available in the same
suite... (Word, Excel, Powerpoint, and a graph software cover more than 99%
of what we use (e-mail and internet excluded), so LO can really meet our
needs; some features in CALC are already better than in Excel).
With the X error bar feature included in Calc, I would have strong arguments
to suggest the use of LO for our scientific activities; students and
collaborators would not raise arguments to argue against it, just because
treating their data, drawing graphs, presenting them and writing reports
would be simpler than what they are doing at present: with LO, no need to
master several softwares or to manage import/export processes between
unrelated softwares

So, I consider this feature is really important!

2. Broken axis option
There are ways to turn around the use of broken axes. This feature has
probably less priority than solving some bugs.

3. Y-error bar for Net chart
This feature has probably less priority than solving some bugs.

Hope this can help in the debate!


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