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Oracle Open Source Software

OpenOffice.org Declares Independence From Oracle, Becomes LibreOffice 648

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the because-they-can dept.
Google85 writes "The OpenOffice.org Project has unveiled a major restructuring that separates itself from Oracle and that takes responsibility for OpenOffice away from a single company. From now on, OpenOffice's development and direction will be decided by a steering committee of developers and national language project managers. Driving home the changes, the OpenOffice.org project is now The Document Foundation, while the OpenOffice.org suite has been given the temporary name of LibreOffice."
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OpenOffice.org Declares Independence From Oracle, Becomes LibreOffice

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  • by desertrat_it (650209) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @10:51AM (#33722322) Homepage

    You're kind of... wrong.

    It's taking a vitally important piece of software out of the hands of a commercial company which has not shown a great deal of respect for the principles of free, libre, open source software.

    If you RFTA, it states that they have asked Oracle to donate the OpenOffice.org name to the project. Oracle's response to this request will really define Oracle's relationship with the FLOSS community.

  • Re:Why the new name? (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @10:56AM (#33722430)

    Yes, OpenOffice trademark is owned by Oracle.

    Oracle own the OpenOffice.org trademark (not OpenOffice), OpenOffice.org is OpenOffice,org because another group already owned the OpenOffice trademark.

    http://www.openoffice.org/about_us/summary.html

  • by Steve Max (1235710) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @11:00AM (#33722476) Journal
    That's exactly what TFA says they've done. Actually, they even invited Oracle to join the new community and donate the OpenOffice.org name.
  • by loftwyr (36717) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @11:02AM (#33722520)

    A large number of Sun developers worked on OOo but there was also a large number of other devs willing to work that couldnt' get their patches committed. That's why go-oo.org was created with a huge patchset. Sun had a large "not invented here" mindset that stopped a lot of open source devs from continuing to work on it.

    Now that OOo is LibreOffice, perhaps the huge go-oo patchset can be committed and the unofficial "not-a-fork" can end.

    I'm looking forward to all the new features and such that will be able to be added.

  • by neothoron (1402383) <neothoron@@@gmail...com> on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @11:06AM (#33722590)

    There are two enormous reasons OpenOffice has always failed to attract developers outside from Sun:
    - Copyright assignment: if you don't assign all copyright of your code to Sun, then it cannot be in OpenOffice.
    - Bureaucratic obstruction: Sun's QA had to validate your code through a lengthy process before you could even think about it being accepted.

    In short, Sun managed OpenOffice's development the same way any proprietary software's development would have been managed. Is it really surprising then, that Sun failed to attract outside developers?

  • by Vectormatic (1759674) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @11:07AM (#33722610)

    it is also spanish... which a significant amount of 'the population' (i assume you mean you americans) do speak.

    (also, get over yourself, encountering a single word which isnt in the american dictionary is no reason to panic)

  • by Bill Dimm (463823) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @11:11AM (#33722684) Homepage

    From the FAQ [documentfoundation.org]:

    Q: What does this announcement mean to other derivatives of OpenOffice.org?

    A: We want The Document Foundation to be open to code contributions from as many people as possible. We are delighted to announce that the enhancements produced by the Go-OOo team will be merged into LibreOffice, effective immediately. We hope that others will follow suit.

  • by yet-another-lobbyist (1276848) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @11:11AM (#33722686)
    That's why they say "temporary". They realize it's important, so they want to get it right and take their time (and possibly even involve some savvy people from the community). So what are you complaining about? OK, this is slashdot, so it's not cool to RTFA. However, not even reading the summary? That's taking it too far, dude (or duderette)...
  • by thethibs (882667) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @11:14AM (#33722726) Homepage
    Actually, the reference is to a drink--the Cuba Libre. What could be more evocative of the open source community than dictatorship, coke and rum?
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @11:16AM (#33722750)

    Make the mascot a Zebra, and the English speakers will suddenly pick up on it.

    Only the North American manglers of the English language will. (maybe)

    I for one don't say Zeeeeeeebra.

  • by xiando (770382) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @11:33AM (#33723000) Homepage Journal

    As far as I remember, one of the problems OpenOffice always had was that most of the developers were paid developers inside Sun who worked on OpenOffice full-time. I thought the code was kind of a mess and hard to decipher for anyone outside, so the project always fought for more volunteers, but could not get many. Has this changed?

    It has been hard for anyone "outside" to contribute a long time, but for other reasons. Great patches have long been rejected upstream for no reason. If you look at http://www.documentfoundation.org/faq/ [documentfoundation.org] you see that "We want The Document Foundation to be open to code contributions from as many people as possible. We are delighted to announce that the enhancements produced by the Go-OOo team will be merged into LibreOffice, effective immediately. We hope that others will follow suit. ". This is a big and very important change of attitude. We can at minimum expect that all the currently available patches who are available but have been ignored by "OpenOffice.org" will be added to LibreOffice, and I hope and suspect more developers will contribute now that they can.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @11:40AM (#33723132)

    The go-oo merge has already been confirmed [documentfoundation.org]:

    We are delighted to announce that the enhancements produced by the Go-OOo team will be merged into LibreOffice, effective immediately

  • by Jason Levine (196982) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @11:44AM (#33723200)

    From their FAQ ( http://www.documentfoundation.org/faq/ [documentfoundation.org] ):

    Q: What does this announcement mean to other derivatives of OpenOffice.org?

    A: We want The Document Foundation to be open to code contributions from as many people as possible. We are delighted to announce that the enhancements produced by the Go-OOo team will be merged into LibreOffice, effective immediately. We hope that others will follow suit.

  • by characterZer0 (138196) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @11:55AM (#33723362)

    Bell Atlantic to Verizon to quote a more well known example.

  • by jgagnon (1663075) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @12:02PM (#33723462)

    OpenOffice.org is trademarked, which is now owned by Oracle. Making the name OpenOffice could easily be crushed by Oracle if they chose to. Giving it a new name, however, would make it a lot harder for Oracle to get in the way of this move.

  • by gslj (214011) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @12:04PM (#33723488)

    Leebray Zeebray? I don't get it.

    It works if you pronounce it French-style instead of Spanish-style. Lee-BRUH, not Lee-BRAY. (Do Zebras bray?)

    -Gareth

  • by azahar31 (1492521) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @12:18PM (#33723724) Homepage
    From Wikipedia: The project and software are commonly known as OpenOffice, but this term is a trademark held by a company in the Netherlands co-founded by Wouter Hanegraaff and is also in use by Orange UK,[8] requiring the project to adopt OpenOffice.org as its formal name.
  • by arivanov (12034) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @12:19PM (#33723744) Homepage

    It has been steadily getting better since 2.4 and most importantly getting faster, not slower (as is the case with MS Office). I would not even try to run 2007 on a netbook while OO runs perfectly fine on anything down to around 400MHz.

    The problem with it is that import/export filters still suck bricks through a straw sidewise.

    If you want to keep your docs in its original format and produce PDFs and distribute finished docs as PDFs it has long been on par with MSFT office. If you are using low spec machines it has long exceeded it.

  • by cmiller173 (641510) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @12:19PM (#33723760)
    The project and software are commonly known as OpenOffice, but this term is a trademark held by a company in the Netherlands co-founded by Wouter Hanegraaff and is also in use by Orange UK, requiring the project to adopt OpenOffice.org as its formal name.
  • by desertrat_it (650209) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @12:25PM (#33723834) Homepage

    From Groklaw:

    "LibreOffice is being welcomed by Red Hat, Canonical, Google, and Novell, among others, and by both FSF and OSI."

    They will not lack for resources with that backing.

  • by DrStoooopid (1116519) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @12:39PM (#33724068)

    Z:\> apt-get install ms-office

    'apt-get' is not recognized as an internal or external command,
    operable program or batch file.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @12:39PM (#33724086)

    Making the name OpenOffice could easily be crushed by Oracle

    And the reason it was named OpenOffice.org in the first place was because OpenOffice is/was already trademarked : http://www.openoffice.org/FAQs/faq-other.html#7

      - Peder

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @01:02PM (#33724526)

    I am not from USA. French and Spanish has been useless in the last four countries I have been living in.

    English is the only language I could use in all of these areas on a daily basis: Scandinavia, South-East Asia, Australia, and the Middle East.

    Most of the people I communicate with in English are Indians, Arabs, Pakistanis, Chinese, Filipinos, and so on.

  • by tyen (17399) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @02:05PM (#33725570) Journal

    ...and Solaris instantly becomes next to worthless, except for Oracle DBs and big Corporation purchases...

    We use Solaris for its ZFS, as no one else has continuous integrity checking in a production-grade filesystem; for hundreds of terabytes, we don't feel comfortable with any other filesystem. FreeBSD is coming close, but ACL support is still very lacking.

  • by wastedlife (1319259) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @02:13PM (#33725690) Homepage Journal

    You should at least attribute that quote:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/OpenOffice.org [wikipedia.org]

  • by TemporalBeing (803363) <bm_witnessNO@SPAMyahoo.com> on Wednesday September 29, 2010 @10:20AM (#33734106) Homepage Journal

    Wasn't the whole point of Go-OO fork being a fork that copyright assignment was required for merging it upstream?

    From their FAQ [documentfoundation.org] (emphasis mine):

    Q: What difference will The Document Foundation make to developers?

    A: The Document Foundation sets out deliberately to be as developer friendly as possible. We do not demand that contributors share their copyright with us. People will gain status in our community based on peer evaluation of their contributions - not by who their employer is.

    So I'm guessing that was a Sun or Oracle requirement, probably Sun since they also had Star Office under a Commercial License so they probably wanted the copyright assignment so they could do Star Office, where as the Document Foundation seems to be set up so as not to have any kind of commercial offering, more like Mozilla; also from the FAQ [documentfoundation.org] (emphasis mine):

    Q: What difference will The Document Foundation make to users of LibreOffice?

    A: LibreOffice is The Document Foundation's reason for existence. We do not have and will not have a commercial product which receives preferential treatment. We only have one focus - delivering the best free office suite for our users - LibreOffice.

    So it looks like that should not longer be a concern, and if that was the only reason for Go-OO then there is no longer a reason for Go-OO to remain. However, I doubt that was the only reason (don't know, just my thought).

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