- Mail chew; sync. with Miklos, consulting call. Lunch. BoD call.
While most of the posts on this blog are about LibreOffice, another project overseen by The Document Foundation is DLP – the Document Liberation Project. Whereas LibreOffice is an end-user application, DLP is a collection of free and open source software libraries that help to convert document formats. Developers can use these libraries in their programs, in order to import and export a large variety of files – including proprietary formats. Many well-known applications use DLP libraries, including Inkscape, Scribus, Calligra and of course LibreOffice.
So, what happened in DLP throughout 2017? Read on for our round-up of the year’s news…
Aleksas Pantechovskis, as part of the Google Summer of Code, worked on a new import filter for QuarkXPress documents: libxqp. It currently supports QuarkXPress 3.1 – 4.1 documents, and this image shows it in action (original QuarkXPress file on the left, and how it’s converted into OpenDocument on the right):
Laurent Alonso made some major improvements to the Lotus 123 filter, adding support for many formatting and layout options. Check out these pictures as an example – the top shows a Lotus 123 file in LibreOffice 5.3, missing almost all of its formatting. Underneath, however, you can see how it’s rendered in LibreOffice 5.4, with much more of the formatting present (click for bigger):
Throughout the year, many libraries were updated as well. Here’s a summary:
For details on the libraries mentioned above, see the projects page on the site. And check out the contribute page to see how you can help – because even if you’re not a developer, you can prepare sample documents for testing. Oh, and to learn more about DLP, watch this short video!
I worked on two new Python scripts for the administration of the LibreOffice extensions and templates website. I need a list of projects that are in the review state private. The second new script lists all releases that are only in the review state pre-release. This means they have not published yet and are not visible for the user of the website. I published the scripts in my repository on Github.com.
LibreOffice has turned seven on September 28, 2017. When we launched our first press release on September 28, 2010, our entire mailing list was quite small: 200 recipients gathered from different sources with journalists and media contacts from all over the world.
During these seven years, my main task has been media relations. One of the most important objectives has been the improvement of the mailing lists, both in terms of quantity and quality.
Today, after seven years, the size of the database has changed dramatically, as we have almost 19,000 email address in our mailing lists, which are targeted based on country, platform (desktop, iOS, Android, mobile, cloud) and focus (security and reviews). In 2017, we have started to target industry analysts, but this list is far from being complete.
Based on geography, we have 6 global lists (journalists, analysts, teams), 70 lists for Europe, 30 lists for the Americas, 5 lists for Pacific, 21 lists for Africa, 18 lists for Asia Middle East, 17 lists for Asia, and 24 lists for Asia Far East. In addition, around 5,000 records are updated and 2,500 are added each year.
Lists are global by country, plus each country – when possible – has a specific list of people who opened a previous press release. Thanks to this targeted database, we have a hit rate around 30%, twice as much as the global PR industry.
For major announcements, individual emails are sent to friendly journalists with a specific angle. I am connected to over 2,000 journalists via LinkedIn, and I have regular contacts with many of them.
Of course, taking care of mailing lists would not be enough without a monthly average of 50 personal contacts with editors, via email and/or phone, and over 100 answers to specific requests (pictures, statistics, review related questions and other info about TDF and LibreOffice).
Another project I have been working at is the production of basic slide decks on different subjects, which can be used by community members to create their own slide decks for presentations. At the moment I am working at updating the following slide decks: Project History & Background, LibreOffice & Competitive Presentation, Document Standards & Open Document Format, Advantages of ODF vs OOXML, Migration Protocol & Training Protocol, plus Useful Slides for Presentations. I also have less organized slides about Digital Citizenship, or the relationship between Technology and Individual Freedom of Choice.
Community members are warmly invited to send me an email to check if I have something which can help them to add some beef to their presentations. In fact, in some cases I test slide decks – adding new angles and concepts – in front of small audiences, before releasing them “officially” on the wiki.
Looking forward, I plan to bring analyst relations up to speed (as media), and improve community-focused activities, supporting the organization of local events and participate when it makes sense budget wise. I would also like to facilitate NLP (native language projects) involvement in the project, helping the integration of local communities within TDF and fostering their growth when they are small or even completely missing.
Two months ago I start to finalize the existing Elementary icon theme for LibreOffice. It’s about 2.000 icons and now they are available in LibreOffice 6.0 beta. In addition all icons are available as svg file so it can be used and edit in an easy way.
Please download and test LibreOffice 6.0 beta to give feedback. You switch the icon theme with Tools -> Options -> View -> Icon Style. We talk about a lot icons not all are perfect. Feedback is always welcome.
Mary Christmas and an shiny new year with LibreOffice 6.0.
I worked on my Python script to get a list of active and not active users out of the Plone instance that is running the LibreOffice extensions and templates website and finished this script today. I run this script and got the list of currently active versus nonactive users. I’ll use the results of today to compare them with the results which I get in about two weeks. I’ll use the findings to have a closer look onto some accounts.
I worked on improving the EPUB3 export filter in LibreOffice recently. First, thanks to the Dutch Ministry of Defense in cooperation with Nou&Off who made this work possible. Since the previous blog entry there have been a number of improvements around 4 topics.
The character properties of link text is now handled correctly, in the above example you can see that the text is red, and this comes from a character style.
Previously the support for tables was there just to not loose content, now all kinds cell, row and table properties are handled correctly. A few samples
custom cell width:
custom row height:
So the table support should be now decent, covering row and column spanning and various cell border properties.
Previously only the simplest as-character anchoring was supported. Now much more cases are handled. Two examples:
image with a caption:
This includes various wrap types (to the extent HTML5 allows representing ODF wrap types).
If the user chooses to embed fonts (via File → Properties → Font → Embed), then the EPUB export now handles this. Here is a custom font that is typically not available:
(The screenshot is from the Calibre ebook reader.)
All this is available in master (towards LibreOffice 6.1), or you can grab a daily build and try it out right now. :-)
I uploaded my presentation (in German language) that I gave at the Open Rhein Ruhr in Oberhausen today. You could find it here:
How to Prepare Labels with Libreoffice.org by Bruce Byfield.
This tutorial covers using templates, how to import images and use text, in-depth instructions on using mailmerge and more.
For more reading on using labels with Libreoffice:
Have more questions about using labels, feel free to visit the forums and engage the community in helping you
When we started flatpak’ing LibreOffice, we made builds of the LibreOffice “Fresh” stream available on the Document Foundation download pages. Since LibreOffice 5.4.2, we now provide such builds through Flathub.
The benefit to you as a user is that there are builds for more architectures (currently aarch64, i386, and x86_64), and that you need to keep track of one less single-app Flatpak repo. (Check out what else is available in the Flathub repo!)
The benefit to me as provider of the original Document Foundation flatpak builds is that the Flathub infrastructure now does those builds for me. We will stop providing the Document Foundation builds after the current LibreOffice 5.4.3.
Data.gov.il was created in 2011 after the Israeli social justice protests as part of the the public participation initiative and started to offer data held by the government. Back then the website was based on Drupal. In 2016 it was changed to CKAN, a designated system for releasing data. This system is licensed under the AGPLv3 requiring source code availability for anyone who can access the the system over a network, de facto for every user.
Since the change to CKAN, open source people asked the state to release the code according to the license but didn’t get a clear answer. All this time when it’s clear it’s violation. This led Gai Zomer to file a formal complaint in March 2017 with the Israeli State Comptroller. Absurdly, that same month the ICT authority mentioned a policy to release source code it owns, while failing to release code it has taken from others and adapted.
With the end of the summer break and Jew holidays, and after I wasn’t able to get the source, I decided to switch to legal channels, and with the help of Jonathan Klinger and my company, Kaplan Open Source Consulting, we notified they should provide the source code or we’ll address the court.
Well, it worked. In 3 days time the CKAN extensions where available on the website, but in a problematic way, so users weren’t able to download easily. This is why we decided not to publish this code release and let them fix it first. In addition we made it clear all the source code should be available, not only the extensions. Further more, if they already release it’s recommended to use git format instead of just “dumping” a tarball. So we told them if they aren’t going to make a git repository we’ll do that ourselves, but in any case, would prefer them to do that .
While this issue is still pending, the ICT authority had a conference called “the citizen 360” about e-gov and open government in which they reaffirmed their open source plans.
Now, a month later, after our second letter to them, the about page in data.gov.il was updated with links to the ICT authority GitHub account which has the sources for the website and the extensions. A big improvement, and an important mark point as the commit to the repository was done by an official (gov.il) email address.
Beyond congratulating the Israeli ICT authority for their steps forward and the satisfaction of our insisting on them became fruitful, we would like to see the repository get updated on a regular basis, the code being given back to the various CKAN extensions (e.g. Hebrew translation). In general, we hope they would to get inspired by how the how data.gov.uk is doing technical transparency. If we allow ourselves to dream, we would like to see Israel becoming a dominate member in the CKAN community and among the other governments who use it.
We’re happy to be the catalyst for open source in the Israeli government, and we promise to keep insisted where needed. We know that due to other requests and notifications more organizations are on their way to release code.
(This post is a translation from Hebrew of a post in Kaplan Open Source Consulting at https://kaplanopensource.co.il/2017/11/20/data-gov-il-code-release/)
(Not so) recently I upgraded a Debian system from Jessie to Stretch. Along with that came an upgrade of the Digikam photo management application from version 4.x to 5.3. After starting that the first time the albums were empty. WTF? Putting the modified digikam4.db aside, creating a fresh one and restoring the old one and comparing those revealed that they differed in how the AlbumRoots path was stored. Digikam 4.x stored it as volumeid:?path=%2Fhome%2F... (with URL encoded %2F as / slashes) where Digikam 5 stores a literal / slash. Changing that to what Digikam 5 expects did the trick and the albums were there again. So when upgrading, before you start Digikam 5 for the first time, do the following (assuming the database is /home/you/Pictures/digikam4.db)
sqlitebrowser ~/Pictures/digikam4.db &
Start digikam. All good (hopefully ;-)
Forgot to mention that when starting Digikam 5 the first time a dialog appears offering to migrate from version 4, it advises to not do so but has migration preselected, do not migrate there or it will mess things up. You may lose some existing personal preferences, but the migration for me at least simply did not work.
Related seems to be KDE bug 364258 though claimed to be fixed.
I worked a bit further on my Python scripts to manage some admin tasks on the LibreOffice extensions and templates website. I had to search for an issue in one of the scripts, because I got not the expected data. I found the first issue and got a step further. I’ll work on this further during the next days.
At the Rome Conference venue was a seat in the front row of the audience reserved for women who have been victims of violence and were killed.
I had a longer list of potential user that tried to create an account on the LibreOffice extensions and templates website but submitted no valid email address. I had to delete this accounts – currently manually -, because they blow up the database of the site without any value to the project (and potential user, because there is no way to activate them).
"one of the great events for openSUSE community (i.e., both contributors, and users) in Asia. Those who usually communicate online can get together from all over the world, talk face to face, and have fun. Members of the community will share their most recent knowledge, experiences, and learn FLOSS technologies surrounding openSUSE."This year hosted this event at the University of Electro-Communications (UEC) in Chofu, Tokyo, and I was honored to be a committee member.
|Sponsor board and event board. See "LibreOffice: The Document Foundation" logo!|
|Not only the full talk in mini-conference, but he also had a lightning talk on 21st Oct evening. by hisa_x. Flickr link|
|Shinji wearing Rome conference T-shirt. Cool! by hisa_x. Flickr link|
WE COMMIT OURSELVES: to support the preservation of mother tongues by encouraging all peoples to translate, document, support, and promote our office productivity tools in their mother tongueThen, not only UI/document translations but language-dependent features work well is also important. But sometimes it is quite hard for developers to understand what is "work well" in language which is not his/her mother tongue. Especially CJK, RTL for a developer who uses latin language. So we, Asian users have to improve LibreOffice by ourselves and to help developers to go the right way.
|Rin Nakamura talking about Excel Houganshi. by hisa_x. Flickr link|
|Umul talking with demonstrations. by Edwin Zakaria. Flickr link|
|TRABELSI Mohamed talking about Tunisia and LibreOffice, by hisa_x, Flickr link|
|Aschalew Arega Ademe talking about Ethiopian IT / FLOSS includes LibreOffice, by hisa_x, Flickr link|
|Speakers group photo in our booth, by Edwin Zakaria. Flickr link|
On Thursday, we came to the conclusion to close voting for the LibreOffice mascot in advance of the planned schedule in December. For a number of reasons, the process has evolved in a direction we were not expecting. When we started, we were looking for a visual image which could represent LibreOffice, a free office suite developed by an international and diverse community of friends, and not for a subject of heated discussions between groups and individuals.…
As you’ve no doubt seen, over the last few months we’ve been looking for a LibreOffice mascot. This is just something fun for our community to use, for instance on T-shirts at events, so it doesn’t have to be ultra slick and professional – it isn’t a replacement for the official branding and logos that we use in the software, website and marketing materials.…
tl;dr: Please comment at https://imageboard.documentfoundation.org/posts
The voting phase has been conducted with great success. More than 27,000 people had a look at the submissions and many voted on all items. Thanks a lot for your interest and contribution! There has also been some discussion on various social media channels about the procedure.…
I worked on a new EPUB3 export filter in LibreOffice recently. First, thanks to the Dutch Ministry of Defense in cooperation with Nou&Off who made this work possible. The current state is that basic features work nicely to the extent that the filter is probably usable for most books (they typically mostly have just text with minimal formatting), so this post aims to explain the architecture, how the various pieces fit together.
The above picture shows the building blocks. The idea is that nominally EPUB is a complete export filter, but instead of doing all the work, we offload various sub-tasks to other modules:
First we invoke the existing (flat) ODT export, so we can work with ODF instead of with the UNO API directly. This will be useful in the next step.
Then we feed the SAX events from the ODT export to a new librevenge text export. Given that the librevenge API is really close to ODF (and xmloff/ has quite some code to map the UNO API to ODF), here it pays off to work with ODF and not with the UNO API directly.
The librevenge text export talks to a librevenge generator, which is David Tardon’s excellent libepubgen in this case.
Finally libepubgen calls back to LibreOffice, and our package code does the ZIP compression.
The setup is a bit complicated, but it has a number of advantages:
Instead of reinventing the wheel, LO and DLP now shares code, libepubgen is now a dependency of LibreOffice.
libepubgen doesn’t bring its own ZIP writer code, it can nicely reuse our existing one.
This is a great opportunity to finally write an ODT→librevenge bridge, so other DLP-based export libs can be added in the future (e.g. librvngabw).
If we ever want to export to EPUB from Draw/Impress, libepubgen will help us there as well.
As a user, here is a list of features you can expect working:
plain text should work fine (formatting may be lost, but content should be fine)
table of contents, as long as you properly use headings or you separate chapters by page breaks
export options: EPUB3 vs EPUB2, split on headings vs page breaks
basic set of character and paragraph properties should work
During development I regularly used epubcheck, so hopefully the export result is usually valid.
All this is available in master (towards LibreOffice 6.0), or you can grab a daily build and try it out right now. :-)
broadwayd :5 &
firefox http://127.0.0.1:8085 &
GDK_BACKEND=broadway BROADWAY_DISPLAY=:5 soffice --nologo &
The new release 6.0 of LibreOffice is just around the corner. And we also want to update the documentation for this release. We have three proposals for new covers and would like to know which one you prefer.
Please vote by clicking option 1, 2 or 3 below and submit per “vote”.…
The post Community-vote for the new ‘Getting Started Guide’ cover appeared first on LibreOffice Design Team.
Last week I had fixed a trivial bug (a leftover from a former change where a function’s return was changed, but one place of its usage managed to escape to be not converted to properly treat the changed return). It seems to simultaneously have fixed a number of other bugs (the discussion may be found in the bug tracker issue). The little (a few characters) bug turned out to create both performance issues, and clipping of characters, so it had big impact on LibreOffice on Windows (with DirectWrite, e.g. when OpenGL is used).
The problem became trivial both to find and fix, because of great bug report by Telesto, who not only filed the report, but also had provided every relevant piece of information, including terminal output accompanied the problem manifestation. I cannot emphasize enough the importance of this: the effort of the bug reporter makes a difference. Without the effort, some problems remain very difficult for developers to be tracked down and get fixed.
I write this to praise Telesto‘s great job, and urge every reporter of a bug to follow this great lead.
Enumeration of lists is one of the most struggled features in LibreOffice Impress. That is clear from the issues reported on Bugzilla tdf#103364 and tdf#103369 with over 100 bugs and enhancement requests, but also when asking users. A usability test was conducted at the city of Nantes revealed some of the major problems that we want to tackle now.…
He took the small bundle from Karlsson and held her tenderly in his arms.
"Don't cry, there's a good baby", he said.
Astrid Lindgren "Karlsson on the Roof"