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Re: [tdf-discuss] Re: Remove ActiveX from LibreOffice

On Tue, Jan 12, 2016 at 10:36 AM, timofonic timofonic <>


I'm an humble and unskilled user, but here's my opinion:

- I personally think technologies like ActiveX are a double sword, they
help others to get attached to the Microsoft ecosystem. This technology
isn't an open standard and has potential security risks.
- I see this issue is taken serious with ActiveX, but there's another
dangerous technology: Java.
* Do you remember what happened with Oracle vs Java? They are switching to
OpenJDK, but personally I think that environment is poisoned by a
corporation as greedy and corrupt like microsoft.
* I think Java is a security risk, not so multiplatform in reality and not
so efficient. It should be avoided and eliminated from LO codebase.

What about making Python and Lua more important in LibreOffice?

My first thoughts:  Python and Lua are languages.  Windows is an OS,
meaning ActiveX works on Windows with any language that supports it,
allowing the code which runs under ActiveX to be ported to any other
application natively on Windows.

Windows is no small OS.  In 2015, it still maintains over 80% marketshare
of all desktop OSes:

Plus, Python directly supports ActiveX and can import into itself, and I
believe with ActivePython can also export:

- Lua:
* It's extremely lightweight and it did born for configure files.
* It can be used to replace certain native code that is difficult to
maintain or prone to lots of changes.
* You can use a JIT or compile it as native code, there are different
* It could make LibreOffice more customizable: Do you think LibreOffice UI
is awful? Are you a keyboard junkie that is used to console text editors?
Do you have some disability that requires a specific interface (visual,
tactile, eye movement, voice...) No problem if the UI could be easy to
adapt to make it work in different ways.

I have no experience with Lua.

- Python
* There's UNO: Who uses it?
* What about using the more faster Python implementations?

Blender uses a background python interface.  It allows for some really nice
features, though most everything is done through the GUI for most users.

I think LibreOffice needs to have a more disruptive and innovative

- I always considered emacs something very interesting, but not practical.
* elisp and lack of multithreading make it very unusable.
* It's unusable until you master it. It's good you can do some magic with
programming skills and get used to keyboard use, but there should be a
friendly start and the default mode should be easy for unskilled computer
* Despite of that, the Emacs community is impressive: There's constant
loads of new extensions for it, very enthusiast users t the level some of
them are unfortunately zealots.

- I'm jealous of Atom, despite being "just" a text editor:
* It has loads of extensions.
* It could be used as an IDE for programing, web development and design.
* But I consider the "web native" apps really resource eaters.

What's the future of LibreOffice? Does it want to be just a Microsoft
Office clone?
- Why not make it a more flexible but lightweight at same time?
- What about niches? Engineering, sciences, education, programming.
- What about making it not freeze while saving and all these annoying

I would love:

- Writer: The best of a "text processor". Become a powerful ide. Able to
edit using markup languages. Able to use DVCS like Git.
- Calc: Make it more advanced
* Stadistic features of the old SMPS one or even better.
*  Integrate CAS (Computer Algebra System) in some reliable and flexible
approach: Maxima, SageMath integration, resurrect CmathOOoCAS (it uses
Xcas/Giac), CoCoA.
- Make Math a real scientific tool.
* What about merging it with some CAS tool?
* What about provide RPN?
* What about making it able to be used as an advanced scientific
calculator and even interoperability with commercial ones?
* It needs some love in the boolean logic features, too.

- All: What about RTCE? Interoperability with e-learning systems like
Moodle? Able to be used to embed scientific/technical information like CAD,
EDA, 3D?

I know my ideas are insane, but that's what my insane mind think about the
ideal LO :)

Kind regards.

LibreOffice only goes to get the low hanging fruit. It may seem a good
approach, but makes it a curse.

On Tue, Jan 12, 2016 at 2:03 PM, Rick C. Hodgin <>

If you search for "Microsoft Excel Automation" you'll find many references
online of how ActiveX is used in other applications to allow the Excel
engine to compute things in a spreadsheet form.  Were the same ability
well-documented in LibreOffice, many people would switch as LibreOffice is
free, and Excel costs hundreds of dollars.

I urge you not to remove it, but to improve it for simpler integration.
should work like this:

lo = CreateObject("libreoffice.application")"c:\path\to\my\document\file.ext")
lo.visible = .t.

And in that way, an application can directly integrate operations into
their app which loads LibreOffice.  Note that these examples are in Visual
Basic, but the same general form works from any application, including C++
(see below):

Here are some automation examples for Excel, Word, Outlook, and

A more example-by-example based tutorial:

Here's a code snippet on how to access ActiveX from another application
using C++ from MSDN:

ActiveX allows applications to integrate each other, and to have windowed
portions within an application which are actually a "portal" through to
other application, though it appears to be fully integrated.  It is a
powerful tool.  And as I say, I have not used LibreOffice for integration
because I could not find good documentation on how to do it, whereas there
are many online resources on how to use Microsoft Office integration.  If
the documentation were better, Windows people would use it as it is highly

Best regards,
Rick C. Hodgin

On Mon, Jan 11, 2016 at 9:52 AM, James E Lang <> wrote:

-----Original Message-----
From: Bryan Quigley <>
To: libreoffice <>
Sent: Sun, 10 Jan 2016 15:41
Subject: Re: Remove ActiveX from LibreOffice


My position on ActiveX is to leave it (lest we break applications in
wild,) and to *announce its deprecation* with two goals: first, solicit
feedback of LO ActiveX consumers and, if so inclined to continue using
help in its support. And second, to flag a date in the future when
will be completely removed from LO codebase, pending sufficient reason
support by its consumers.

[Just to toss in a comment from a NOT NECESSARILY typical USER, I would
probably fail to see any depreciation notice unless it were thrown in my
face each time I used the feature until I say (in effect), "all right,
Enough Already, SHUT UP!" aka, "Don't show this notice again." The same
should apply to revising any existing menu accelerators. --jl]


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