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.


Wednesday
01 December, 2021


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Ekipa jamstva kakovosti LibreOffice (QA Team) ponosno objavlja, da je za preizkušanje na voljo izdaja beta1 LibreOffice 7.3!

LibreOffice 7.3 bo izšel na začetku februarja 2022 (podrobnosti preverite v načrtu izdaj - v angl. jeziku), pri čemer je LibreOffice 7.3 Beta1 druga predizdaja od začetka razvoja izdaje 7.3 junija 2021. Od prejšnje izdaje (LibreOffice 7.3 alpha1) je zabeleženih 1199 objav spremembe kode v skladišču kode ter odpravljenih 205 napak. Preverite poslovenjene opombe ob izdaji, kjer najdete vse podrobnosti o novostih, vključenih v to različico LibreOffice.

LibreOffice 7.3 Beta1 lahko prenesete s tega mesta za sisteme Linux, macOS in Windows, namestite pa jih lahko vzporedno s standardno izdajo.

Če naletite na kakršno koli težavi s to predizdajo, o težavah poročajte v sistemu Bugzilla (potrebujete le veljaven e-poštni račun, da ustvarite nov račun).

Za pomoč se lahko obrnete neposredno na ekipo QA v kanalu QA na IRC ali prek Telegrama.

LibreOffice je projekt skupnosti prostovoljcev, izjemno veseli bomo vaše pomoči.

Veselo preizkušanje!




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The LibreOffice Quality Assurance ( QA ) Team is happy to announce LibreOffice 7.3 Beta1 is available for testing!

LibreOffice 7.3 will be released as final at the beginning of February, 2022 ( Check the Release Plan for more information ) being LibreOffice 7.3 Beta1 the second pre-release since the development of version 7.3 started in mid June, 2021. Since the previous release, LibreOffice 7.3 Alpha1, 1199 commits have been submitted to the code repository and 205 issues got fixed. Check the release notes to find the new features included in this version of LibreOffice.

LibreOffice 7.3 Beta1 can be downloaded from here for Linux, macOS and Windows, and it can be installed alongside the standard version.

In case you find any problem in this pre-release, please report it in Bugzilla ( You just need a legit email account in order to create a new account ).

For help, you can contact the QA Team directly in the QA IRC channel or via Telegram.

LibreOffice is a volunteer-driven community project and your help is much appreciated.

Happy testing!!

Download it now!


Tuesday
30 November, 2021


[en] Michael Meeks: 2021-11-30 Tuesday.

17:49 UTC

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  • Mail & catch-up with Kendy. Lunch.
  • Pleased to see the work we have done together released announced as Nextcloud Office which will be the default Office in Nextcloud from now on; looking very slick. A few points:
    • Lots of that coding touches Collabora Online and is already included and published in CODE 21.11, and of course we build on LibreOffice Technology so that work is also already contributed and will go into the next LibreOffice releases.
    • From a customer and support perspective we continue to work together as before to deliver excellent support to all of our customers and users as today.
    • Naturally we are thrilled that Nextcloud joins a long list of other partners and OEMs that choose Collabora Online as their default option, very often white-labelled.
    • Nextcloud Office built on COOL and LibreOffice Technology
    • Interested by Richard Moore (head of MI6)'s take on data traps
      "The data-trap is this: that if you allow another country to gain access to really critical data about your society, over time that will erode your sovereignty - you no longer have control over that data."

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A quick news update from Germany: the upcoming coalition government endorses free and open source software. In the coalition agreement (German), there are some key sentences on this topic, for instance:

Development contracts will usually be commissioned as open source, and the corresponding software is generally made public.

Another section states:

In addition, we secure digital sovereignty, among other things through the right to interoperability and portability, as well as by relying on open standards, open source and European ecosystems, for example in 5G or AI.

We are encouraged to see FOSS being considered by the incoming government, along with other news such as the north-German state of Schleswig-Holstein switching to LibreOffice and free software.


Monday
29 November, 2021


[en] Michael Meeks: 2021-11-29 Monday.

21:00 UTC

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  • Mail chew, planning call, TDF board candidate questions, recording for Jos; lunch, worked through E-mail, audit, partner bits. Out for a run with J.

Sunday
28 November, 2021


[en] Michael Meeks: 2021-11-28 Sunday.

21:00 UTC

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  • All Saints in the morning - lost singing voice from over-use yesterday; H. played piano & organ. Home - pizza lunch, and talked / snoozed in the warm lounge for a while. Rebekka home, cakes and VR with Raj & Cherish. Drove H. to the train back to Durham.

Saturday
27 November, 2021


[en] Michael Meeks: 2021-11-27 Saturday

21:00 UTC

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  • Up early, Julia-Anne & Isaac's wedding - spent some time setting up the reception venue, before heading to the wedding venue at Clare Country Park. Got quartet bits setup, Jitsi streaming (made worse by remote user-muting (and no ability to then un-mute) of the stream) of the event, and after an awkward hiatus realized I was supposed to be leaading parts of the service - so tried to get the various bits into the order with Cannon White leading the service. Stayed & locked up after photographs.
  • Lovely reception, food, speeches & some dancing - interesting company; drove back through snow / blizard, bed late.

Friday
26 November, 2021


[en] Michael Meeks: 2021-11-26 Friday

21:00 UTC

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  • Day off; visited Bletchley Park with J. M. & E. - really good to see the place; lots of interest, not enough about local favourite Bill Tutte.
  • On to IKEA - which had dis-continued the chairs that J. wanted before they could be ordered; bother. Home, took babes to Badmington & set out to pick up H. from Ely - so lovely to see her again.

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Brussels, November 26 – A coalition of EU software and cloud businesses joined Nextcloud GmbH in respect of their formal complaint to the European Commission about Microsoft’s anti-competitive behavior in respect of its OneDrive (cloud) offering. In a repeat from earlier monopolistic actions, Microsoft is bundling its OneDrive, Teams and other services with Windows and aggressively pushing consumers to sign up and hand over their data to Microsoft. This limits consumer choice and creates a barrier for other companies offering competing services.

Over the last few years have grown their market share to 66% of the EU market, while local providers lost out from 26 to 16%. By heavily favoring their own products and services (so-called “self-preferencing”) or outright blocking other vendors they leverage their position as gate keepers to extend their reach in more and more neighbouring markets and push users deeper into their ecosystems. Local, more specialised vendors are unable to compete “on the merits” as the key to success is not a good product but the ability to distort competition and block market access.

“This is quite similar to what Microsoft did when it killed competition in the browser market, stopping nearly all browser innovation for over a decade. Copy an innovators’ product, bundle it with your own dominant product and kill their business, then stop innovating. This kind of behavior is bad for the consumer, for the market and, of course, for local businesses in the EU. Together with the other members of the coalition, we are asking the antitrust authorities in Europe to enforce a level playing field, giving customers a free choice and to give competition a fair chance,” said Frank Karlitschek, CEO and founder of Nextcloud GmbH

The European Commission’s Directorate-General for Competition exists precisely for the purpose of preventing this kind of abusive behavior and keeping the market competitive and fair for all players. Nextcloud GmbH has filed an official complaint with the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Competition about the abusive practices of Microsoft related to OneDrive. Nextcloud GmbH has also filed a request with the German anti-trust authorities (the “Bundeskartellamt”) for an investigation against Microsoft and is discussing a complaint in France with its coalition members.

Dozens of European SMEs organisations support these efforts to push back against Big Tech and create a level playing field, supporting innovation and local (European) businesses.

A full list of these companies as well as non-profits and industry consortia can be found on https://antitrust.nextcloud.com. On the same page, there is also a list of the media coverage.

About Nextcloud GmbH

Nextcloud Hub is the industry-leading, fully open-source, on-premises team productivity platform and Germany’s number one collaboration solution. It combines the easy user interface of consumer-grade cloud solutions with the security and compliance measures enterprises need. Nextcloud Hub brings together universal access to data through mobile, desktop and web interfaces with next-generation, on-premise secure communication and collaboration features like real-time document editing, chat and video calls, putting them under the


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Escribe Juan C. Sanz Cabrero

Por lo que se puede ver en los foros de ayuda de LibreOffice, muchos usuarios hace preguntas sobre como compartir documentos de LibreOffice con usuarios de otras suites ofimáticas y supuestos problemas de pérdida de …


Thursday
25 November, 2021


[en] Michael Meeks: 2021-11-25 Thursday

21:00 UTC

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  • Mail chew, catch-up with Miklos, then Eloy, COOL community call.
  • Really thrilled to see our first CODE 21.11 release today packed with new features from the team and community.
  • Lunch with Rebekka: at home making wedding cakes for Julie & Isaac. Plugged away at debugging an issue for Lubos; feeling flat.

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Berlin, November 25, 2021 – The Document Foundation announces LibreOffice 7.2.3 Community, the third minor release of the LibreOffice 7.2 family targeted at technology enthusiasts and power users, which is available for download from https://www.libreoffice.org/download/. This version includes 112 bug fixes and improvements to document compatibility.

LibreOffice 7.2.3 Community is also available for Apple Silicon from this link: https://download.documentfoundation.org/libreoffice/stable/7.2.3/mac/aarch64/.

For enterprise-class deployments, TDF strongly recommends the LibreOffice Enterprise family of applications from ecosystem partners, with long-term support options, professional assistance, custom features and Service Level Agreements: https://www.libreoffice.org/download/libreoffice-in-business/.

LibreOffice Community and the LibreOffice Enterprise family of products are based on the LibreOffice Technology platform, the result of years of development efforts with the objective of providing a state of the art office suite not only for the desktop but also for mobile and the cloud.

Availability of LibreOffice 7.2.3 Community

LibreOffice 7.2.3 Community represents the bleeding edge in term of features for open source office suites. For users whose main objective is personal productivity and therefore prefer a release that has undergone more testing and bug fixing over the new features, The Document Foundation provides LibreOffice 7.1.7.

LibreOffice 7.2.3 change log pages are available on TDF’s wiki: https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/Releases/7.2.3/RC1 (changed in RC1) and https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/Releases/7.2.3/RC2 (changed in RC2).

LibreOffice Technology based products for Android and iOS are listed here: https://www.libreoffice.org/download/android-and-ios/, while for App Stores and ChromeOS are listed here: https://www.libreoffice.org/download/libreoffice-from-microsoft-and-mac-app-stores/

LibreOffice individual users are assisted by a global community of volunteers: https://www.libreoffice.org/get-help/community-support/. On the website and the wiki there are guides, manuals, tutorials and HowTos. Donations help us to make all of these resources available.

LibreOffice users are invited to join the community at https://ask.libreoffice.org, where they can get and provide user-to-user support. People willing to contribute their time and professional skills to the project can visit the dedicated website at https://whatcanidoforlibreoffice.org.

LibreOffice users, free software advocates and community members can provide financial support to The Document Foundation with a donation via PayPal, credit card or other tools at https://www.libreoffice.org/donate.

LibreOffice 7.2.3 is built with document conversion libraries from the Document Liberation Project: https://www.documentliberation.org.


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Zdeněk Crhonek from the Czech LibreOffice community writes:

Our team has finished translating the LibreOffice Draw Guide 7.1. As usual, it was a team effort, namely: translations by Petr Kuběj, Zdeněk Crhonek, Radomír Strnad, Ludmila Chládková; text corrections by Marcela Tomešová, Martin Kasper, Eva Kmochová, Věra Dvořáková; localized pictures by Roman Toman; and technical support from Miloš Šrámek. Thanks to all of the team for their work!
The Czech translation of the Draw guide 7.1 is available for download on this page.

Now, the team continues with translations of the Base Guide. We always looking for new translators and correctors. Join us!

Many thanks to everyone in the Czech community for their great work! Want to see more documentation in other languages? Give us a hand!


Wednesday
24 November, 2021


[en] Michael Meeks: 2021-11-24 Wednesday

21:00 UTC

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  • Took E. to school; out for a walk with Isaac, catch-up call with Eloy. Analyzed some macros, out for a run.

Tuesday
23 November, 2021


[en] Michael Meeks: 2021-11-23 Tuesday

21:00 UTC

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  • Took E. to school; mail chew, call with Mike, Thorsten & Paolo. Mail chew, catch-up with Cor. Up very late working on demo servers & documents.

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Just days after the release of the Impress Guide 7.2, the LibreOffice Documentation Team is proud to announce the immediate availability of the Calc Guide 7.2, that includes the latest developments of the LibreOffice Community 7.2 Calc module.

Download Calc Guide

This 548 pages guide is for beginner to advanced users of Calc, the spreadsheet component of LibreOffice. You may be new to spreadsheet software, or you may be familiar with another program, this book covers the main features of Calc. The new Calc guide has been updated from Calc Guide 7.1. It covers changes that are visible in the user interface, including the new Search Commands tool, the global toolbar lock, details of the properties dialog, improvements in the Status and Sidebar, new menu entries, standard filter dialog and new cross-shaped cursor.

The book also introduced contents on user interface variants, AutoInput tool, the Find toolbar, the Paste Special dialog, the AutoFilter tool, template dialogs, QR code generation, multi-column feature for text boxes, updates on the Solver, Print, PDF and Certificate dialogs, as well as External data tool for HTML tables, updates on the Scriptforge library and the new built-in UNO object inspector.

The Team

Calc 7.2 Documetnation Team

The Guide is the volunteer effort of many members of the documentation community. Revisions and enhancements on the contents are the work Rachel Kartch, Rafael Lima, Felipe Viggiano, Kees Kriek, Zbyszek Zak coordinated by Steve Fanning. Special thanks to Jean Hollis Weber for her final revision and publication.

Download or buy a printed copy

You can download a PDF copy of the Calc Guide 7.2 or purchase a printed copy from Lulu. More guides are available in the LibreOffice Documentation website.  In addition you can bookmark the online version in your browser at the LibreOffice BookShelf.

Join us

Join the Documetnation Team


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There are many situations that you need to use numerical constants in your code. If you use numerical literal values directly instead of symbolic constants, it can cause problems. For example, consider this piece of code that calculate area of a circle:

double area = 3.14 * r * r;

This is not OK, because:

1. The value of π is not 3.14 nor 3.141592. π is an irrational number, and the suitable value depends on the number of decimal places that you can/want to use among unlimited decimals of π.

2. Suppose that you want to change the numerical literal to increase the number of decimals that you use. You should search for 3.14, and check one by one to see if it is actually π, or it is another 3.14 unrelated to the well-known mathematical constant.

C++ logo

C++ is the main programming language used in the LibreOffice development

Using symbolic constants

A better code can be:

double area = M_PI * r * r;

and with more long and meaningful name for variables:

double circle_area = M_PI * radius * radius;

Because of the above mentioned problems, it is better to use some numerical constant instead.

ES.45: Avoid “magic constants”; use symbolic constants

If it is well-known (like π), you should use the appropriate symbolic constant like M_PI. If not, you should define a new constant with proper name and type with ‘contsexpr’.

One solution to find such magic constants is to start from a list of some well known mathematical constants:

Then, store some of them in a text file, let’s say ‘constants.txt’, then search for all these values inside C++ files:

git grep -Ff constants.txt *.cxx *.hxx

Many of these symbolic constants like M_PI already exist in C++ standard library or some place in the LibreOffice code, and you can use them easily.

You should examine the ‘grep’ results carefully, because not every 3.14 refers to PI.

Final Notes

Besides fixing the bugs, there are many places to work on improving the code, and some of these are listed as EasyHacks. The specific improvement that is discussed in this blog post is filed as tdf#145759.

If you want to work on this improvement about using symbolic constants, but you need to know how to get started with LibreOffice development, I suggest you to see our video tutorial:

Getting Started (Video Tutorial)


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Cover of Impress 7.2 GuideCover of Calc 7.2 GuideThe latest user guides from the LibreOffice documentation team are LibreOffice 7.2 Impress and LibreOffice 7.2 Calc, available in free PDF, ODT, or to read in a browser. Low-cost printed copies are available from Lulu.com.

Visit the Documentation page on the LibreOffice website for links.


Monday
22 November, 2021


[en] Michael Meeks: 2021-11-22 Monday

21:00 UTC

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  • Mail, quick planning call, took M. for her 'cello exam to Haverhill on to Deja-vu for a comforting coffee; dropped her back to school; to work. Mail & meetings, catch-up call with an old partner.
  • Setup tables & chairs & video-call for PCC & Bishop & co. to come over for section 11 meeting for new vicar at our house, caught up with Ian afterwards.

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Today we’re talking to Bayram Çiçek, who’s helping to implement new features in LibreOffice has part of the Google Summer of Code…

Tell us a bit about yourself!

I live in Çanakkale, Turkey. I’ve just graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Computer Science from Çanakkale Onsekiz Mart University.

When I was a student, professors and instructors always told us about the importance and benefits of contributing to free and open source projects like LibreOffice. Since I was a LibreOffice user for years, the idea of not just being a user – but developing it, to go beyond being a user – has always been exciting to me. Therefore I decided to contribute to LibreOffice.

In November 2020, Hacettepe University organized an event called “ACM Hacettepe Lectures”. I attended the course “Contributing to Open Source Projects with C++” by Muhammet Kara. We sent our first patches to LibreOffice and Collabora Online together with other attendees, and this is how my journey began.

Then, I decided to apply to Google Summer of Code 2021, and I was lucky enough to get selected as a student under the mentorship of Muhammet Kara and Heiko Tietze, in the past summer. I worked on the most-annoying bugs, and tried to fix as many bugs as I could during GSoC.

What are you working on in the LibreOffice project right now?

Currently, I’m working on Tables in Writer, and hoping to add a diagonal-borders feature to it. After gaining some more experience, I’ll be working on some bugs that related to my GSoC project, as I mentioned in my GSoC final report.

Why did you decide to become a member of The Document Foundation?

I think contributing to LibreOffice is both fun and sometimes challenging. When ‘fun’ and ‘challenge’ come together, it creates a great community, as LibreOffice does; and being a part of this community makes you more passionate and stronger. And that’s why I wanted to become a TDF member.

Anything else you plan to do in the future?

I will work on most-annoying bugs and I’ll be fixing as many bugs as I can in the future. Also, I want to actively contribute to Collabora Online.

On the other hand, I’ll continue to contributing to Turkish translation of LibreOffice and I want to be an active member of Turkish Community to spread the open source usage and LibreOffice.

Many thanks to Bayram for all his contributions, and enthusiasm in our community! And to everyone reading this: Find out what you can do for LibreOffice – have fun, build up your skills, and do awesome things 😊


Sunday
21 November, 2021


[en] Michael Meeks: 2021-11-21 Sunday

21:00 UTC

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  • All Saints, played bass & violin; back for a fine pizza lunch. call with H. collected babes from Cambridge late; sleep.

Saturday
20 November, 2021


[en] Michael Meeks: 2021-11-20 Saturday

21:00 UTC

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  • Up late, J. on a course, dropped M. into Cambridge. Bit of mail chew; played with E. David over - even more floor-space in the Garage freed: with G-clamp rack, and counterweight for hatch - fun.

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Thanks to the LibreOffice Documentation Team, the Impress Guide 7.2 has just arrived with the latest LibreOffice Impress 7.2 developments.

Impress Guide 7.2

This 374 pages book covers the main features of Impress, the presentations (slide show) component of LibreOffice. You can create slides that contain text, bulleted and numbered lists, tables, charts, clip art, and other objects. Impress comes with prepackaged text styles, slide backgrounds, and Help. It can open and save to Microsoft PowerPoint formats and can export to PDF, HTML, and numerous graphic formats.

The full set of published LibreOffice guides is available in the LibreOffice Documentation Website. Here is the Table of Contents published in the LibreOffice Bookshelf Project:

The Guide update was an effort of Rachel Kartch, Vasudev Narayanan and Peter Schofield.

Rache, Vasudev and Peter

Thank you guys for the wonderful Impress Guide!

 

Join the Documentation Team


Friday
19 November, 2021


[en] Michael Meeks: 2021-11-19 Friday

21:00 UTC

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  • Catch up call with an old friend, staff call, TDF board call. Admin backlog, a smidgin of hacking.

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Firebird 3.0.8 Docker image is released and the following tags can be used : 3.0, v3.0, v3.0.8 .


Thursday
18 November, 2021


[en] Michael Meeks: 2021-11-18 Thursday

21:00 UTC

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  • Caught up with Miklos & Andras, COOL community call, found some fun bugs; marketing call, partner call.

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The north-German state of Schleswig-Holstein plans to switch to open source software, including LibreOffice, in its administration and schools.

In doing so, the state wants to reduce its dependence on proprietary software, and eventually end it altogether. By the end of 2026, Microsoft Office is to be replaced by LibreOffice on all 25,000 computers used by civil servants and employees (including teachers), and the Windows operating system is to be replaced by GNU/Linux.

The necessary steps for this are specified in the planning of the Schleswig-Holstein state parliament (German), as digital minister Jan Philipp Albrecht explains in an interview with c’t (also German – Google Translate version here).

Lothar Becker and Thorsten Behrens from The Document Foundation, the non-profit entity behind LibreOffice, were invited to a meeting with those responsible (photos below). The focus was on cloud solutions, integration with LibreOffice and other systems, and video conferencing tools.

We at the Document Foundation are pleased that LibreOffice is being used in public institutions, and hope that more federal states, governments and other organisations around the world will join the migration.

(Germany map in banner image: David Liuzzo, CC-BY-SA)


Wednesday
17 November, 2021


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Firebird Project is happy to announce general availability of Firebird 3.0.8 — the latest point release in the Firebird 3.0 series.This sub-release offers many bug fixes and also adds a few improvements, please refer to the Release Notes for the full list of changes.Binary kits for Windows, Linux, Mac OS and Android platforms are immediately available for download.


[en] Michael Meeks: 2021-11-17 Wednesday

21:00 UTC

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  • Weekly sales call, CP all-hands, marketing review, catch-up call with William & Andras.

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When working with shapes and charts in LibreOffice, there are several occasions that you have to calculate tan-1x. But is atan function always the best choice? Here we discuss using atan2 function instead of atan in C++ code. When used in correct place, atan2 can have a lot of benefits when calculating atan ( y / x ).

Unit circle

Unit circle

If you use atan(x) to calculate the output θ, you have to think about different situations that may occur, because with the same value of x, there are multiple values of θ, and it would be your responsibility to handle that, and find out what is the suitable value of θ.

But, if you have two values y and x, and you want to calculate atan(y / x), there is a better choice: using atan2(y, x). As discussed here, atan2(y, x) can handle the values from all the 4 different quadrants.

This is the formula for atan2(y, x):

atan2 formula

atan2 formula

In this way, you don’t have to check the sign of x and y because atan2() does this by itself.

There are some places in the LibreOffice core that is currently using atan, and atan2 is more suitable. For example, in hwpfilter/source/hcode.cxx:

1447 double angle;
1448 angle = (180 / PI) * atan( ( y2 - y1 ) * 1.0 / ( x2 - x1 ));
1449 if( y2 >= y1 ){ /* 1, 2 quadrant */
1450      if( angle < 0. )
1451            angle += 180.;
1452 }
1453 else{ /* 3, 4 quadrants */
1454      if( angle > 0 )
1455            angle += 180.;
1456      else
1457            angle += 360.;
1458 }

A better choice would be this one single line:

1458 double angle = basegfx::rad2deg(atan2(y2 - y1 , x2 - x1));

Instead of multiplying the output of atan() by (180 / PI) to get degrees out of radians, we simply use basegfx::rad2deg() for the conversion, and also using the atan2(), those conditions would be superfluous, and are removed.

Finding instances of atan to replace with atan2

This grep command shows the instances of the similar situations:

git grep atan\(

Within the results of the grep, you can find places that atan2() is better. You should take care about the conditions that may be present (or missing) after the atan(). These conditions usually check the sign of the numerator and denominator in the fraction passed to atan(). Make sure that the code works correctly after removing them.

Final Notes

Besides fixing the bugs, there are many places to work on improving the code, and some of these are listed as EasyHacks. The specific improvement that is discussed in this blog post is filed as tdf#145630, and you can submit patches for this improvement  to LibreOffice Gerrit.

If you want to work on this improvement, but you need to know how to get started with LibreOffice development, I suggest you to see our video tutorial:

Getting Started (Video Tutorial)

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