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.

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19 October, 2018


I bought a gps sport watch some month ago and found a free software program to get the activity data out of it.  This program and software project is named ttwatch with regards to the name of the manufacturer of the sport watch: Tom Tom.

This free software is able to get the activity data from the sport watch and convert them into different file formats, e.g. the gpx file format. I compared the gpx output files, created by this software with the ones, written by the free software gpsprune. The output of this two programs have a different order of the attributes latitude and longitude. I read about discussions about the correct order of this two attributes and decided that I would like to follow the order of gpsprune. Thus I created an issue report for the original project and added the necessary changes to a fork that I created on my Github account.


From September 18 until September 21, ownCloud held their annual conference oCCon2018 in Nürnberg, Germany. Participants joined the four days of the conference, hacking, learning and trying out new ideas on the ownCloud platform.

During the ownCloud conference, Collabora Productivity’s General Manager Michael Meeks gave a talk about how Collabora Online integrates into ownCloud. Collabora Online is a powerful LibreOffice-based online office that supports all major document, spreadsheet, and presentation file formats, which is easy to deploy in ownCloud, as a simple extension. Key features are collaborative editing and excellent office file format support.


Check out the slides above for the complete presentation:

Download the slides from the presentation “Real Time & Secure Collaboration”!


The post “Real Time, Secure Collaboration” presentation at ownCloud Conference 2018 appeared first on Collabora Productivity.


我們的阿爾巴尼亞社群建立了最近在阿爾巴尼亞地拉那的 LibreOffice Conference 2018 精彩影片回顧,來看看吧!我們也非常感謝他們在組織這次活動上所做的一切努力。

新聞來源:Video recap: LibreOffice Conference 2018 in Tirana, Albania


As some of you might already know, LibreOffice has had the ability to use Mozilla Themes (Personas) for some time (Tools > Options > Personalization); but it kept breaking all the time, and never had an acceptable UX. Also tons of errors/warnings, and very slow search and apply processes almost brought it to the point of being killed for good.

But I couldn’t let it die, started looking into the related code and the bug reports. These might be some of the possible reasons why I couldn’t let it die: * It was a tiny silly feature, which brings some colour/fun to the UI * It might add to the level of emotional adoption by users * There were user requests * I already touched the code before

First thing to do was to fix the search functionality to make it operational again. It was broken because of some small changes in the source code of the persona pages on the Mozilla side.

Then I started fixing some small issues, and looking into ways to improve the under-the-hood part of the Personas dialog. It turned out that the dialog was fetching many web pages and parsing them to find the useful pieces on every search; and there was no caching. And the fetcher code, based on Neon, was also buggy, and was causing a lot of issues on its own.

After some web debugging and searching on the web and inside our own code-base, I have found the new API of Mozilla, which was returning JSON data, consisting of all of the useful info about each theme; and realized that we could simply use curl to fetch the data we need. (It seemed, to me, faster and simpler than Neon.)

Here is a summary of what has been done so far: * Make the search functional again * Fix some crashers * Refactor to improve performance, readability, stability, and to make the code future-proof * Modernize under-the-hood part * Reveal & polish the buried sub-features like preinstalled/bundled themes * Some other small bug fixes and improvements

From all, the under-the-hood patch had a major positive impact on the dialog, fixing multiple bugs at the same time, and preventing some more. After this commit: * The initial search time went down from ~40 seconds to ~6 seconds * The subsequent searches for the same term went down to ~3 seconds from ~40 seconds * So the search process became much much faster and more stable

And this is the commit message:

Modernize personas under-the-hood - The search

* Upgrade the used mozilla API from v1.5 to v3
* Ditch Neon for curl
* Get rid of the get-HTML-then-search-within craziness

It is much faster and smarter now:
* Fetches the search results at once in JSON format,
  instead of repetitively making http calls for each persona,
  and relying on an ever-changing HTML design
* Doesn't redownload and overwrite files each time, so it is
  much faster for the second time of the same search query

This patch handles the search part. A follow-up patch will
handle the 

18 October, 2018


Will you still need me, will you still feed me
When I’m sixty-four?
— When I’m sixty-four,  Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, The Beatles

So almost six years ago I started using my LibreOffice development rig “Big Bertha”. Back then I thought: “This likely will be my last big machine, the next time I wont buy anything for under my desk, I will just build in the cloud.”. Six years on, that is partially true: I did not buy a new “desktop” machine. On the other hand, I am not building on some cloud machine either: I still use good old Bertha. So, why that?

For one, the speed of processors stopped improving at the insane rate it had before, so indeed machines that one buys today are not that much faster than those six years ago. However, cloud computing prices also stopped dropping like they used to. Which leaves me with not much reasons to buy new hardware — but also with little reason to consider to accept the additional inconveniences that come with building on remote hardware.

In 2012, the fastest build of a then-master checkout of LibreOffice from scratch and without caches I got out of Big Bertha was in ~18 minutes. I have not tried it again with present day LibreOffice — I assume it to be quite a bit slower, if only because e.g. we added tests left and right. But still: the old machine under the desk is still competing. A look at the numbers: A c4.8xlarge “compute-optizimed” instance on EC2 promises 36 vCPUs and 60GiB of memory. Now those 36 cores might be faster than those on the old Opteron 6272s I am running on. But I assume not much: CPUs really did not get much faster in the last six years — especially for workloads like compiling LibreOffice. For the most part they got better in other ways though: they use less power and push out less heat. So in the end the two Opteron 6272 with 32GB are likely still competing quite well with the stuff available from cloud providers.

So, why am I posting this? Buying a modern Server CPU still costs a fortune: a 16-core AMD Epyc 7281 costs 672 EUR at the time of posting. A new full machine with two of those comparable to Big Bertha will cost 2000-3000 EUR. Everybody loves AMDs Epycs apparently. But this challenge is also an opportunity: If one does not buy new hardware. Looking for “Opteron 6272” and “Opteron 6276” I found full systems available for 410 USD or even a 64-core, 256MB RAM system for 999 USD. These systems might be making too much heat and eating too much electricity: When I measured Bertha back in the day, compiling used ~400 Watt. At local electricity prices of 0.30 EUR/KWh that is 0.12 EUR per hour. Even if the c4.8xlarge on EC2 might be a bit faster, it still costs 10x as much. One should


My slides from LibreOffice conference 2018:


Our success story in a nutshell and on 54 slides (extended version of my presentation at LiboCon, Tirana) : fixing more than 30 serious interoperability and usability problems of LibreOffice during 3 months, gallery of our nice results and introduction of our mentoring program with the secret sauce: Building a LibreOffice development team.




Our Albanian community has created this great recap video the recent conference in Tirana – check it out! And a big thanks for their help with organising the event.

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我們正在編輯並上傳其他我們在地拉那的大會的影片,這次是 Italo Vignoli 為我們解說專案與社群的概覽。(使用耳機以取得最佳音訊效果。)

新聞來源:LibreOffice Conference 2018: State of the Project (video)

17 October, 2018


LibreOffice 6.2 está siendo desarrollado actualmente por nuestra comunidad mundial y su lanzamiento está previsto para principios de febrero de 2019 – vea las notas de lanzamiento que describen las nuevas características. Aún estamos en el inicio del ciclo …

The post El próximo 22 de Octubre – Primer Sesión de Caza de Errores para LibreOffice 6.2 appeared first on Blog de LibreOffice Hispano.


After a great LibreOffice Conference in Tirana we are now proud to invite you to the LibreOffice Hackfest that we are organizing in cooperation with The Document Foundation. The Hackfest is planned for the last weekend of October, from Friday 26 to Sunday 28 and will take place in our office in Munich, in the new … LibreOffice Hackfest in modulE weiterlesen


We’ve edited and uploaded another video from our conference in Tirana, in which Italo Vignoli gives an overview of the project and community. (Use headphones for the best audio.)

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Since I stopped my volunteer work for The Document Foundation because of the communications style and behavior from leading members of the project I had more time to improve my health and fitness. I use my spare time for frequent traings sessions, especially for a run in the woods or in the fields and cycling. Great experience because of this warm autumn 😉

16 October, 2018

[en] Michael Meeks: 2018-10-16 Tuesday

12:59 UTC

  • Mail chew; administration & form filling, built ESC stats.
  • The increasing volume of sextortion SPAM I get is quite extraordinary and rather liberating given its comic lack of any basis. Interesting to see the large increase in purchase-order, payment related scams too - thank goodness our finance department are savvy (and run Linux Desktops).
  • Joined the LOT Network today; was extraordinarily impressed and pleased to see Microsoft's unambiguously good move of joining OIN - was wisely preceeded by joining LOT - to avoid concerns about indirect trolling. Already had a great deal of respect for Microsoft's engineers (having worked with some in the deepish past), now it seems they have commercial people to match. If you read the MS Legal VP's quote I linked - it is interesting that he traces their open-ness back to open-sourcing ASP.Net in 2008. Miguel's Mono project combined with his positive and constructive engagement with many good people inside Microsoft seems to have yielded much sweet fruit in the end. Which is of course not to say that the bad-cops did not play a role too, but - anyhow; most pleased at the positive outcome for all.

LibreOffice 6.2 預計將於2019年2月上旬釋出,包含了許多新功能,已經實作的部份可於 release notes 頁面上看到,當然,還有更多新功能。

QA 團隊將會在10月22日舉辦 LibreOffice 6.2 的第一個臭蟲狩獵會議,其將會檢查 LibreOffice 6.2 Alpha 1,會在活動的前幾天放上預發佈伺服器,並可供 Linux(提供 deb 與 rpm 軟體包)、macOS 與 Windows 使用,而其設定檔將會另外存放,所以可與您目前使用的版本一同安裝。

在10月22日當天,導師會在 UTC 早上7點至晚上7點(亦即臺灣時間的22日下午3點至29日的凌晨3點),經由 QA 團隊的 IRC 頻道及郵件列表協助經驗較少的志願者分類臭蟲。當然,您也可以在其它時間協助測試 LibreOffice 6.2.0 Alpha1,其將會在預發佈伺服器上放到11月中旬。

在這天當中,會有一個特殊階段,是在 UTC 時間下午2點至4點測試在 LibreOffice 6.2 中的新 KDE5 整合

這次的臭蟲狩獵季所有的詳細資訊都在 wiki 上。加入我們,讓 6.2 成為有史以來最好的版本!

新聞來源:Coming up on 22 October: First Bug Hunting Session for LibreOffice 6.2


LibreOffice 6.2 is currently being developed by our worldwide community, and is due to be released in early February 2019 – see the release notes describing the new features here. We’re still early in the development cycle, so more features are still to come!

In order to find, report and triage bugs, the LibreOffice QA team is organizing the first Bug Hunting Session for LibreOffice 6.2 on Monday October 22, 2018. Tests will be performed on the first Alpha version, which will be available on the pre-releases server a few days before the event. Builds will be available for Linux (DEB and RPM), macOS and Windows, and can be installed and run in parallel along with the production version.

Mentors will be available from 07:00 UTC to 19:00 UTC for questions or help in the IRC channel #libreoffice-qa and the Telegram QA Channel. Of course, hunting bugs will be possible also on other days, as the builds of this particular Alpha release (LibreOffice 6.2.0 Alpha 1) will be available until mid-November.

During the day there will be a dedicated session to test the new KDE 5 integration available in LibreOffice 6.2 from 14:00 to 16:00 UTC.

All details of the first bug hunting session are available on the wiki. Come join us, and help to make LibreOffice 6.2 the best release yet!

LibreOffice 社群組織了這次的 Hackfest,開發者和社群成員可以在此會面,開發新功能、修復臭蟲並吃吃喝喝!本月稍晚,我們會在幕尼黑(位於南德)見面。幕尼黑位於阿爾卑斯山南部,以其老城區、教堂與啤酒廳而聞名。

新聞來源:Coming up on 25 – 28 October: LibreOffice Hackfest in Munich

15 October, 2018

[en] Michael Meeks: 2018-10-15 Monday

21:00 UTC

  • Interview; mail chew, sync with Kendy & Eloy. Lunch with J.
  • Tried to restore the missing Mattermost to IRC bridge that just got shut down; horrors. The lack of good nick / tab-autocompletion - plus the insistence on requiring '@' before completing (which ambiguates itself via other unusual fields) makes it deeply cumbersome to use for conversation. Surely it is possible to learn to communicate effectively in a much more constrained fashion - say with a lump of coal in your mouth; but why ? I wonder if RocketChat copes with typing the 1st char of a nick, and tab to dis-ambiguate it.


Today we talk to Ahmad Haris, who helps out with LibreOffice events in Asia, and has recently joined The Document Foundation’s Membership Committee. (Click here to learn more about the benefits of membership.) Here’s what he had to say…

Where do you live, how can people find you on the web, and what are your interests outside of LibreOffice?

I live in Bogor, West Java, Indonesia. However, I was born in East Java (the opposite side). I’m active on Facebook, Twitter, and sometimes Google+ and IRC (last one only for meetings with GNOME Foundation Members).

When I’m not working on LibreOffice, I play the guitar, or ride my motorcycle :-)

What have you been doing in the LibreOffice community?

I helped to organize the Indonesia LibreOffice Conference 2018 in March this year. (See the full report here.) That’s my biggest contribution so far. Before that, I just using and testing the software.

How did you get involved?

In 2008, I was migrating a city (Central Aceh – Aceh Province) and a province (Yogyakarta Province) here in Indonesia to use Free and Open Source Software (FOSS). At that time I used OpenOffice.org. I was helping the government to use it for two years, based on my job. Then time flied… LibreOffice arrived, so I moved to it.

What does LibreOffice need most right now?

In my opinion, LibreOffice needs a growing community, especially in developing countries in South East Asia or Africa. And we need to do more research, for instance on how people in those locations use office suites, what kind of templates they need, and so forth. In Indonesia, many users ask about page borders (a feature in other office software).

What tools do you use?

My main tools in all of my laptops (I have more than one, for travelling, for work and for playing/recording music) are LibreOffice, Visual Studio for code editing, Inkscape for vector graphics, Gimp for bitmap graphics, and Audacity for editing audio.

Anything else you want to mention?

To increase technical contributions to LibreOffice, I’d like to see more how-to guides for beginners, such as for contributing code for the first time, and organising workshops. Also, we should highlight success stories about implementations of and migrations to LibreOffice (I can help here, in terms of Indonesia).

A big thanks to Haris (as he likes to be known!) for his support and contributions to our worldwide community. And to everyone reading this, wherever you are on the planet, you too can make a difference and help to spread the word about LibreOffice. See here to get started!


The LibreOffice community organises regular Hackfests, where developers and community members meet up, work on new features, fix bugs and enjoy good food! Later this month, we’ll meet in Munich, in the south of Germany. Munich is situated just north of the Alps, and is known for its cosy old town, churches and beer halls:

Interested in joining? Click here for the full details – and add your name to the list if you plan to attend!

(Munich photo: Reinald Kirchner, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

14 October, 2018


The Plone CMS/DMS came with a theming editor, where you could create a new theme and edit themes. You could copy an already on the site available theme or create a theme from scratch. It’s your choice. I used the theme part in the administration interface to copy the Plone default theme ‘Barceloneta’ and save it under a new name.

Plone – New Theme Created From Default Theme

I could edit this new theme with the Plone theme editor (button ‘Modify Theme’.

The Plone Theme Editor

The theme is based on the Diazo theme engine (https://docs.plone.org/external/diazo/docs/index.html#diazo-theme-engine-guide)

[en] Michael Meeks: 2018-10-14 Sunday

21:00 UTC

  • All Saints, music group, chatted with people; back for lunch with Lydia. Mended part of the creche door, back to All Saints to fit it, odd issue with Organ bellows over-filling and triggering a relief valve - interesting. Home to read stories, dinner late, iplayer, bed.


I updated my local copy of the Github repository for Plone buildout.coredev and gave the branch for the Python 3 migration another try. I run the bootstrap-py3.sh script and all packages were updated. Then I started Plone with ‘./bin/wsgi fg’ and created a new Plone site.

I activated the multilingual add-on to make the new Plone site available in different languages. This added a special dialog to the administration page. I opened this dialog and added a second language to the site (in my case German). Plone created different folders for each of the two languages. I gave first the English folder a try and added a first page to it. Because I don’t want to use my time for typing I copied content from the website of The Document Foundation website.

Plone 5.2 on Python 3 – First Page

I published this page and choose it as the default page of the English section. Then I tried out the translation framework of Plone. I made a test with a translation of the page into German.

Plone 5.2 on Python 3 – Using Translation Feature

The dialog shows me the different fields of the English page and I could easily start to write a translation into German. If I had already local or somewhere else a translation of the English text, I could do copy and paste.

Once finished with the translation I saved it and published the page. I set it as the default of the German section. Users with German laguage setting or preference will get this translated page as their entry point now.

13 October, 2018

[en] Michael Meeks: 2018-10-13 Saturday

21:00 UTC

  • Up lateish, did some maths with E. and M. - read with H. and lazed around with N. Out to David's for lunch - and enjoyed an Escape Room with H,N,M & David.
  • Home for some hacking about in the garden, a fine dinner, cake for David - and up late talking.


我們已經開始編輯並上傳在九月於地拉那舉辦的 LibreOffice Conference 2018。這是第一批,將會有更多錄影陸續上傳。(小祕訣:使用耳機以取得最佳音訊效果。)


來自會議的其中一個贊助者,Collabora 的簡報:


新聞來源:LibreOffice Conference 2018: Opening session and sponsor videos


I read in an email on the LibreOffice design list that has been resources allocated to the extensions and templates website for about 25 thousand Euro (from a long time member of the board of The Document Foundation: https://listarchives.libreoffice.org/global/design/msg08869.html). This generates the impression that there has been spent this amount of money to improve the site. But if you look into the accounting legers of The Document Foundation (TDF) (https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/TDF/Ledgers) you will get the real data. TDF spent in 2017 6399,44 Euro and in 2018 642,60 Euro; all in all 7042,04 Euro, which seemed only a bit less than 25 thousand Euro 😉

This TDF resources were used espially to migrate the content of the first LibreOffice extensions and template websites into the new one, for smaller fixes within the code, a professional buildout and maintenance environment and a training of two TDF staff member on the platform and its maintenance (myself wasn’t part of the training session).

The biggest part of the development of the new LibreOffice extensions and templates website was done  during my spare time. I tried to save as much as possible expenses for TDF, because I thought it would help to lower the adminstration expenses of TDF and free more money for the promotion of education and science.

12 October, 2018

[en] Michael Meeks: 2018-10-12 Friday

21:00 UTC

  • Interview(s) - still trying to find a good JS developer to work on Online. Worked on catch-up calls with Eloy, Kendy, Miklos, lots of backed up mails and tasks to do.


Ein wichtiges Anliegen der LibreOffice-Community ist die Weitergabe von Wissen. Neben Initiativen wie Workshops, Bug Hunting Sessions oder Vorträgen arbeiten wir gemeinsam auf Hackfesten daran, nicht nur das Programm zu verbessern, sondern geben dort auch einen Einblick in die Programmierung von LibreOffice, um mehr Menschen die Mitarbeit im Projekt zu ermöglichen. Das nächste Hackfest findet vom 26. bis 28. Oktober in München statt.

Als Allgäuer freut’s mich natürlich besonders, dass die Veranstaltung diesmal quasi direkt vor der Haustür stattfindet – denn die Hackfeste sind immer eine spannende und gewinnbringende Veranstaltung! ;-)

Uns alle eint das Interesse an LibreOffice und solche Community-Treffen sind ganz klar eines der Highlights im Jahr, vor allem weil man sich persönlich sieht. Das ist ja auch das Schöne an Open-Source-Communities: Aus Kollegen werden schnell Freunde, die einen über viele Jahre begleiten – man kennt sich, man hat gemeinsame Interessen und eine solche Veranstaltung bietet wieder die Gelegenheit, Entwickler persönlich kennen zu lernen und ein Gesicht zum Namen zu bekommen. Solche Kontakte sind viel wert, gerade in einem großen Projekt wie dem unseren und ich freu’ mich schon auf den gemeinsamen Austausch!

Mehr Informationen gibt's im WikiMehr Informationen gibt’s im Wiki

Auf der Wiki-Seite sind schon viele Teilnehmer gelistet und ich würde mich freuen, auch deinen Namen dort zu sehen, denn Anfänger wie “alte Hasen” sind gleichermaßen willkommen!

Los geht’s am Freitag, den 26. Oktober ab 17 Uhr im “modulE” in der Elektrastraße 6a in München, abgerundet wird die am Sonntag endende Veranstaltung durch eine Stadtführung. Mein herzlicher Dank geht auch an unseren Gastgeber CIB, der unter anderem die Räumlichkeiten zur Verfügung stellt!

In diesem Sinne: Happy Hacking!

LibreOffice Hackfest 2018 in München

11 October, 2018

[en] Michael Meeks: 2018-10-11 Thursday

21:00 UTC

  • To the booth, another day of visitors; helped Jos pack things up, back to the airport via a quick tour of the town. Picked up by J. bed rather late.

[en] Andreas Mantke: Really Shocked!

19:23 UTC


I’m doing volunteers work in different roles and areas of the project for about sixteen years yet. I spent a lot and for some longer periods nearly my whole spare time on the project. I suffered from a public accusation  of a destructive communication style. This harmed me very intense. I though this could be a singular ‘event’. But I was tought today that this seemed to be the new behavior of members of the leading body.

I created and maintained the LibreOffice extensions and template website for more than seven years yet. I read today on a public maiing list that the work I had done during my spare time for this period was not even werth to talk to me (even by email). Instead I felt my work devaluated in public. I felt like being in the pillory. I though the methods of the Middle Ages were not such popular anymore. But I had to confess that I was at fault.

This is behavior and communication style is not appropriate for a project, where I want to spent my spare time and do volunteer work. Because the behavior is not a single ‘event’ I stop my work for and within the LibreOffice project as from now.

I’m open for intensive and also critical discussions but for a behavior and communication style that I wouldn’t accept in the office during my paid work.

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