Welcome to The Document Foundation Planet

This is a feed aggregator that collects what LibreOffice and Document Foundation contributors are writing in their respective blogs.

To have your blog added to this aggregator, please mail the website@global.libreoffice.org mailinglist or file a ticket in Redmine.


Tuesday
23 January, 2018


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LibreOffice’s design community works on the software’s user interface (UI), improving its usability and accessibility. With LibreOffice 6.0 due to be released at the end of the month, we talked to members of the community to get their perspectives on the new version…

What have you been working on in preparation for LibreOffice 6.0?

Various things, including:

  • New table styles and new gradients (click for bigger):

  • The LibreOffice 6.0 motif/splash screen:

  • And menu and toolbar improvements

What are your favourite new features in this release?

Both GSoC (Google Summer of Code) projects are really nice: the revamped customization dialog, and the special character dialog with quick access from the toolbar. In addition, there’s the ability to rotate images to arbitrary degrees, and many other small improvements.

What tools and services do you use in the design community?

At the moment we use Balsamiq Mockups, but next we switch to Pencil. In addition, we use LibreOffice Draw (eg for the new motif) and Inkscape. For communication, we are active on IRC (in the #libreoffice-design channel on Freenode) and Telegram.

Finally, how can people get involved with the design community?

A big thanks to the design team for their input and improvements in LibreOffice 6.0. For our final Community Focus, we’ll talk to the development community – more on that soon!


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Do you like to use nice bitmap pattern in LibreOffice for area fill. So if you draw a rectangular, a start, … whatever you can use this bitmaps.

With the help of designers from openclipart, pixabay, publicdomainpictures, … I made 42 seamless area bitmap pattern but only 50% are needed. So which one do you like which one can be dropped.

Please comment to the bug reportt tdf#114817 or in the comment section. If you’d like to test them feel free to download the LibreOffice writer dokument.


Monday
22 January, 2018


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Berlin, January 22, 2018 – The Document Liberation Project announces five new or improved libraries to export EPUB3 and import AbiWord, MS Publisher, PageMaker and QuarkXPress files. The libraries have been originally developed for the LibreOffice 6.0 major release, but can be used by any other software thanks to the OSI (Open Source Initiative) compliant license.

libe-book exports LibreOffice ODT files to EPUB3. At the moment it offers just basic features, but development is still undergoing and new features will be added before the next major release. The library can be downloaded from https://sourceforge.net/projects/libebook/. A description of the architecture and the features is available here: https://vmiklos.hu/blog/basic-epub3-export.html.

libabw imports AbiWord documents, and can be downloaded from http://dev-www.libreoffice.org/src/libabw/. The library home page is at https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/DLP/Libraries/libabw.

libmspub imports MS Publisher documents, and can be downloaded from http://dev-www.libreoffice.org/src/libmspub/. The library home page is at https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/DLP/Libraries/libmspub.

libpagemaker imports PageMaker 6/7 documents, and can be downloaded from http://dev-www.libreoffice.org/src/libpagemaker. The library home page is at https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/DLP/Libraries/libpagemaker.

libqxp imports QuarkXPress 3.1/4.1 documents and templates and can be downloaded from http://dev-www.libreoffice.org/src/libqxp/. The library home page is at https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/DLP/Libraries/libqxp.

The Document Liberation Project was created to empower individuals, organizations and governments to recover their data – hidden inside obfuscated proprietary file formats – and migrate them into perennially accessible standard file formats.

To return effective control over content to the real authors, the Document Liberation Project develops software libraries that can be used by applications to read data in proprietary formats. The libraries are currently used by Calligra, Inkscape and Scribus.


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Google Trends is a service which compares end user searches for specific terms, and as such is a useful marketing tool to get some insight on the awareness of LibreOffice in comparison with other applications. I have compared the five alternatives to the leading office suite during the last 12 months: LibreOffice is leading, followed – as expected – by OpenOffice and WPS Office. LibreOffice is also leading in term of geographical coverage.


Sunday
21 January, 2018


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It was a pleasure to have been given an opportunity to talk about LibreOffice development the other day at the Triangle C++ Developer’s Group. Looking back, what we went through was a mixture of hardship, accomplishments, and learning experience intertwined in such a unique fashion. It was great to be able to talk about it and hopefully it was entertaining enough to those of you who decided to show up to my talk.

Here is a link to the slides I used during my talk.

Thanks again, everyone!


Thursday
18 January, 2018


[en] Michael Meeks: 2018-01-18 Thursday

20:18 UTC

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  • Mail chew, call with HSBC - trying to persuade me to invest in bonds at 0.7%, when the UK Government is offering 2.2% direct at retail; weird. Marketing & Sales call. Lunch.
  • Mail, bits of code, bugs, ESC call, Advisory Board call, sales call.
  • FOSDEM put up some of my incoherent ramblings - looking forward to seeing people in Brussels!
  • Washing machine pump started to make noises as if a hair-band has got into it (urgh), will attempt dis-assembly. Thrilled to discover that the pump (and filter) are trivially accessible and easy to clean in contrast to the last machine where the pump was carefully concealed inside a razer-sharp metal box with rubber and pipe clips everywhere.

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The sun never sets on the LibreOffice community, as there are always active members in some countries. Unfortunately, only a minimal part of this global effort is reflected on this blog, which should feature all activities and achievements. In order to get to this objective, we warmly invite all native language communities around the world to send us a short synopsis and a couple of pictures – if available – every time they do something significant for LibreOffice: a talk at a conference, a booth at an exhibition, a meeting, a conference, a localization sprint, or any other event. The same for achievements such as LibreOffice adoptions by government bodies, central or local public administrations, or large enterprises. Just send an email to media@documentfoundation.org, and we will take care of writing the blog post (if necessary, we will translate the local language to English).


Wednesday
17 January, 2018


[en] Michael Meeks: 2018-01-17 Wednesday

21:00 UTC

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  • Mail chew; patch review, estimation work, catch-up with Miklos. Booked flights to the Univention Summit before FOSDEM - should be great.

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With LibreOffice 6.0 due to be released at the end of the month, we’ve been talking to various communities involved in the project. In the last couple of weeks, we’ve chatted with the localisation and documentation teams, and today it’s the turn of QA (quality assurance), which is coordinated by Xisco Fauli

What has the QA community been working on in preparation for LibreOffice 6.0?

During the development of LibreOffice 6.0, three Bug Hunting Sessions were held (6.0 Alpha1, 6.0 Beta1 and RC1), the last one just two weeks ago. There was also a parallel event organized by Muhammet Kara in Ankara, where volunteers gathered to test LibreOffice 6.0 RC1. Besides that, the QA team is constantly testing the latest daily builds, testing new features, and triaging the bugs reported on Bugzilla.

What are your favourite new features in this release?

That’s a difficult question, especially taking into account all the improvements done in this release to LibreOffice Android Viewer, to LibreOffice Online or the work done by the Google Summer of Code students among others. But if I had to choose one, I think I’d go for the characters dialog refactoring done by Akshay Deep and the UX (user experience) team, as this is probably the feature I will use the most in the near future. Here’s how it looks:

What tools and services do you use in the QA community?

A very handy tool recently completed by Markus Mohrhard is the automated updater for Windows and Linux, which allows the QA team to test daily builds without having to manually download the latest build every time.

This is very practical as testers no longer need to worry about constantly updating to the latest build, and can focus more on testing the program instead, assured that they are testing changes done to the code just the day before.

This tool was presented at the beginning of the LibreOffice 6.0 development cycle, and I believe it will have a very positive impact on the quality of 6.0 as it shortens the time between a problem being introduced in the code, and the time it’s found.

Another tool we’ve been using for some time now is the bibisect repositories, which allow us to find the exact code commit where a bug was introduced, increasing the chances that the bug gets fixed and reducing the time until it gets fixed.

Another tool which is fulling working now is a set of scripts called office-interoperability-tools that we use to automatically find document layout regressions in the master code branch compared to other office suites (in our case we use MS Office). Right now we use it with 8,450 files, and I believe it will also have a positive impact on the quality of LibreOffice 6.0.

Finally, it’s important to mention the main tool used in QA, Bugzilla, the place where all bugs are reported


Tuesday
16 January, 2018


[en] Michael Meeks: 2018-01-16 Tuesday

21:00 UTC

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  • Sync with Andras, Jona, mail chew, commercial call, partner call, read reams of framework contract-ness. Dinner.
  • Debugged some JS horror - where we end up with a 'this' referring to an entirely different object in a class' method - type unsafety to the N'th.

Monday
15 January, 2018


[en] Michael Meeks: 2018-01-15 Monday

21:00 UTC

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  • Sync. with Miklos, Kendy, code review, lunch, mail, sync with Andras, customer call.

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It took some time to remove a lot of accounts from the LibreOffice extensions and templates website that are not used for contributions to the site and the LibreOffice eco-system. I finished this work during already.

It always possible and easy to create a new account on the site, if a new user / community member need one to contribute a LibreOffice extension or template project / release.


Sunday
14 January, 2018


[en] Michael Meeks: 2018-01-14 Sunday

21:00 UTC

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  • Played bass & sang at All Saints, christening & Max spoke. Back for roast lunch, slugging, playing of 'Job Simulator' by babes, Adventures on Odyssey in the evening; put babes to bed.

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I created already some scripts to work on the user database of the LibreOffice extensions and templates website.  I got some different list of the users (e.g. contributing and not contributing users). I monitored this different groups of users for a longer time now. Today I used another script that I already created and began to remove a list of users with no contribution to the site.


Saturday
13 January, 2018


[en] Michael Meeks: 2018-01-13 Saturday

21:00 UTC

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  • Out to practice with H. in the morning, caught up with N's ceramic painting party later. Home for lunch, and some slugging - watched 'Superman' with the babes. Practised bass variously with H. in the evening.

Friday
12 January, 2018


[en] Michael Meeks: 2018-01-12 Friday

21:00 UTC

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  • Mail chew. Poked at dialog code with Kendy, N's friends over for a sleepover & party, up late cleaning async dialog bits up. Collected replacement VIVE controller - excellent, remembered to cover up the mirror in the front room too (a top tip for structured laser users).

Thursday
11 January, 2018


[en] Michael Meeks: 2018-01-11 Thursday

21:00 UTC

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  • N's birthday - fun present opening at breakfast. Admin, calls, some code-reading, ESC call, catchup with JanI. Julie over for dinner & Smash-Up playing action.

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I worked on improving the EPUB3 export filter in LibreOffice further recently. First, thanks to Nou&Off in cooperation with a customer who made this work possible. Since the previous blog entry there have been a number of improvements around a next set of topics.

Cover images

https://farm5.staticflickr.com/4760/38920770224_b247fa89c4_o.png

It is now possible to specify a cover image for the exported EPUB file. Given that a cover image is not naturally part of the Writer document model, I introduced the concept of a media directory for the EPUB export. The media directory is a directory next to the source file, with the <file name without extension> name. If that directory contains a file named cover.svg (or .gif, .jpg, .png), the exporter will automatically use it. Otherwise you can customize this default.

The picture shows two EPUB files in Readium with different cover images.

Improved metadata support

https://farm5.staticflickr.com/4603/38920770174_142950782e_o.png

It’s quite frequent that you are technically author of a document, but the logical author of the book is somebody else. Same for the date of the book, and so on. So the EPUB export dialog now has support for overwriting the defaults coming from the Writer document model. For mass-conversion of documents it’s possible to place a <file name without extension>.xmp file in the media directory and XMP metadata from that file will also overwrite metadata coming from the document model.

The picture shows the extended EPUB export options dialog.

Footnotes and image popups

https://farm5.staticflickr.com/4612/38920770144_e90e2a8e92_o.png

I’ve added support for footnotes. As a special case of this, image popups on images and text is now supported. This works by placing a relative link on a text portion or on an image, and placing an image with the same name (e.g. in high resolution) in the media directory. In this case the EPUB export will bundle the image from the media directory inside the EPUB file and clicking on the text or image will open the bundled image in a popup (or in some other container, depending on how your reader interprets footnotes).

The picture shows such a popup in Microsoft Edge.

Fixed layout

https://farm5.staticflickr.com/4604/38920770104_108465bda1_o.png

The EPUB3 fixed layout is quite similar to PDF, just it is built on top of XHTML and SVG. Possible use-cases for this can be:

  • exporting a document where presenting the content as reflowable text would be misleading (e.g. comic books), but the publisher of the book only works with EPUB (reflowable or fixed layout, but no PDF)

  • printing (again, in case for some reason you want to avoid PDF)

These might be very specific situations, but luckily supporting them is not too complex. I implemented an approach very similar to the PDF export, where we export individual pages of the Writer document’s layout as a metafile, and then consume that — this time with the SVG export. Building on top of the existing Writer layout and SVG export means the hard work is really done by these components, the EPUB fixed layout export just puts these


Wednesday
10 January, 2018


[en] Michael Meeks: 2018-01-10 Wednesday

21:00 UTC

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  • Mail, admin, calls, more admin; a little patch review.

Tuesday
09 January, 2018


[en] Michael Meeks: 2018-01-09 Tuesday

21:00 UTC

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  • Mail chew; suspiciously little - odd, poked sysadmins. Fixed a page border rendering issue in LOOL, ESC bits arrived, built stats.

Monday
08 January, 2018


[en] Michael Meeks: 2018-01-08 Monday

21:00 UTC

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  • Mail chew, sync with Miklos; contract review.

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Collabora has now released LibreOffice Vanilla 5.4.4 on the Mac App Store. It is built from the official LibreOffice 5.4.4 sources. If you have purchased LibreOffice Vanilla earlier from the App Store, it will be upgraded in the normally automatic manner of apps purchased from the App Store.


LibreOffice Vanilla from the Mac App Store is recommended to Mac users who want LibreOffice with the minimum amount of manual hassle with installation and upgrades. If you don't mind that, by all means download and install the build from TDF instead.

We would have loved to continue to include a link to the TDF download site directly in the app's description, as we have promised, but we were not allowed to do that this time by Apple's reviewer.

Because of the restrictions on apps distributed in the App Store, features implemented in Java are not available in LibreOffice Vanilla. Those features are mainly the HSQLDB database engine in Base, and some wizards.

This time we include the localised help files, as there were some issues in accessing the on-line help.

Since the LibreOffice Vanilla 5.2 build that was made available in the Mac App Store in September 2016, there have been a few Mac-specific fixes, like the one related to landscape vs. portrait mode printing on Letter paper. There are more Mac-specific bugs in Bugzilla that will be investigated as resources permit.

Some fine-tuning to the code signing script has been necessary. For instance, one cannot include shell scripts in the Contents/MacOS subfolder of the application bundle when building for upload to the App Store. This is because the code signatures for such shell scripts would be stored as extended attributes and those won't survive the mechanism used to upload a build to the App Store for review and distribution. (For other non-binary files, in the Resources folder, signatures are stored in a separate file.)

We also have made sure the LibreOffice code builds with a current Xcode (and macOS SDK).


Sunday
07 January, 2018


[en] Michael Meeks: 2018-01-07 Sunday

21:00 UTC

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  • Off to All Saints, enjoyed the family service; back for lunch, Got N's minetest pieces going nicely with her, played Smash-Up, with the family, Organ practice with H. Detectorists before bed.

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I worked on a small update of the Plone add-ons that I created to run the new LibreOffice extensions and templates website. The source code of this update went to the github repository of the Document Foundation and I published a new release of the Plone add-ons on the cheeseshop.

I updated the LibreOffice extensions and templates website with the new code of the add-ons via buildout today.


Saturday
06 January, 2018


[en] Michael Meeks: 2018-01-06 Saturday

21:00 UTC

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  • Breakfast in bed for J. - babes did homework, re-silicone'd the shower window, took H. into Cambridge; slugging away from the cold with the family; Julie over in the evening.

Friday
05 January, 2018


[en] Michael Meeks: 2018-01-05 Friday

21:00 UTC

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  • Moderately irritated (as a remain voter) by the repeated, flaccid argument (now on the BBC) that old voters (who are dying out) voted for Brexit, and young people voted to stay: so things are somehow unfair. What a bag of hammers! It is deeply unclear to me that we should dis-enfranchise the old (and hopefully experienced & wise) in favour of the young (and arguably politically naive); but at least there is an argument there for decisions that only impact the young's future. However - the idea that as young people age and they experience life (or their brains ossify) - that their political views remain entirely static seems really unlikely and is an intrinsic assumption here. The old of today would seem to me to be a good proxy for the views of the old of tomorrow.
  • Worked on nailing some contract / admin backlog. Fixed a bug at lunch. Intersted to see the X86_BUG_CPU_INSECURE patch from AMD.

Thursday
04 January, 2018


[en] Michael Meeks: 2018-01-04 Thursday

21:00 UTC

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  • Mail chew; admin, sync with Jona, then Kendy, ESC call.
  • Irritated by dish-washer, why is it that a dish-washer cannot have a colored LED on the front with a large diffuser that shows green: if it has been through a wash-cycle, and the door has not been opened yet (ie. 'clean'), that slowly decays into red over a minute or so after opening the door. The current effort has an un-lit display to denote both dirty and clean states, with a lit-up one for washing; hey ho.

Wednesday
03 January, 2018


[en] Michael Meeks: 2018-01-03 Wednesday

21:00 UTC

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  • Up early; larger babes to school; back to work. Mail, sync with Miklos. Plugged away at admin and accumulated task backlog bits, call with Andras. Practiced bass guitar in the evening.

Monday
01 January, 2018


[en] Eike Rathke: Happy New Year 2018

12:38 UTC

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Today is Sweetmorn, the 1st day of Chaos in the YOLD 3184


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微笑的 Michael Meks 與微笑的 LibreOffice 圖示

新聞來源: LibreOffice Community Smiles #31

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