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  1. #1

    Is libreoffice going the way gnome3?


    My question is: Is there a stable non-java based office suite for linux that might withstand what appears to be a spreading disease of unreliability?

    My trepidation is not unfounded. When Fedora 14 came out, Linux, Gnome2 and Openoffice had pretty much provided a functional drop-in replacement for windows. Then, for some inexplicable reason the folks controlling Gnome3 killed it by completely ignoring the user base. The first warning signs were that the Gnome3 project started ignoring their users.

    Search for: "rotting in threes". Pick "GNOME (et al): Rotting In Threes IgnorantGuru's Blog"

    Now, Libreoffice seems to be going the same way. A usability problem was reported:

    "Can no longer copy spreadsheet cells from libreoffice calc to another app like thunderbird and paste as html table. Was working in 4.1.1.2. No longer works in 4.2.0.x. Uninstalled 4.2.0.x, reinstalled 4.1.1.2, worked again."

    Search for: "libreoffice bugzilla 74584". Pick: "Bug 74584 Can no longer copy spreadsheet cells from libreoffice"

    What was the first response ?:

    " Hi. No problem for me... There mus be something elase wrong on your system? Pls ask the user-support. For exmaple there is a group of users with a great variety of skills that can offer help with questions.."

    Had the responder been without any knowledge, then the "it doesn't happen to me, therefore it must be your system" answer could be overlooked.

    HOWEVER, the person that answered appears to be the Chairman of the Membership Committee" with titles of : "Member Certification Committee, QA, Trainer, Migrations manager".

    Search for: "libreoffice membership committee". Pick: "Membership Committee The Document Foundation"

    A response like that from the chairman of the membership committee of LibreOffice can only appear to be a discouragement of any efforts to address a usability problem.

    Is this the portent of the future of LibreOffice?

    Another thing is the bizarre change of names of the releases. How does one find the new version of the software that hasn't lost any of the previous version's functionality?

    So, I am looking for the office replacement that is not showing any signs of going down the same path of Gnome3.

    Any suggestions?

    Does one exist?

  2. #2
    Linux Engineer
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    Ehrm? OpenOffice? OpenOffice is an Apache project now, it might be a little more stable. I know people left en masse when Oracle was in charge of OpenOffice, but maybe it's time to revisit it?

  3. #3
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    I don't know. I like gnome3. I'm running it on Fedora20 and find it clean and haven't had problems.

    LibreOffice will incorporate any major improvement OpenOffice makes so I can't see any reason not to keep using it - bugs happen and you it is free software so having some expectation that your problems will be addressed by someone else is not reasonable. Bugs always need to be verified.

    As mizzle says there's always OpenOffice (or AbiWord, Gnumeric etc.).

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  5. #4
    Hi gregm,

    My trepidation is that I am using the increasing indifference of the people running the project to the users as a leading indicator of a project going South.

    I am getting the impression that the people that have taken control of LibreOffice are more interested in creating a paid industry to fix bugs in LibreOffice than they are in preventing them. Search on: "libreoffice how to handle regressions". Pick: "Users - How to handle regressions".

    Regardless, of the cause, the effect is going to make Microsoft happy.

  6. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by mizzle View Post
    Ehrm? OpenOffice? OpenOffice is an Apache project now, it might be a little more stable. I know people left en masse when Oracle was in charge of OpenOffice, but maybe it's time to revisit it?
    Hi Mizzle,

    I was one of those that abandoned OpenOffice. I also moved away from Java when it started making overt hooks for Oracle such as "... by your database provider...".

    I had not realized that OpenOffice was now an Apache project. I'm going to switch to it. Hopefully I won't loose too much time in lost formatting when I transfer documents. I'd rather bite the bullet now while I can afford some time for the switch.

    Apparently there is also a non-Java office suite called Calligra. I am going to try it as well.

    Thank you.

  7. #6
    Super Moderator Roxoff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lostuser View Post
    I had not realized that OpenOffice was now an Apache project. I'm going to switch to it. Hopefully I won't loose too much time in lost formatting when I transfer documents. I'd rather bite the bullet now while I can afford some time for the switch.
    It's the beauty of Open Source, there's plenty of choice especially in areas of software that are frequently needed. I hope OpenOffice works out for you, although LibreOffice was a fork of it and might suffer some of the same problems.

    Of course we here cannot speak of the quality of the support services offered by other messaging boards, no matter what ingratiating titles the posters are giving themselves. We certainly want to avoid any situation where we might appear to be looking down our nose and sniggering at them. Especially for Apache-backed projects. On top of that, I almost locked this thread as soon as I saw it, as it's borderline troll-bait. Even if you're disgruntled at an open source package and its support mechanism, having an open dig at it can bring unwanted or unnecessary negative attention back on yourself, and we've got a nice place here where we don't like that to happen. It looks reasonably safe on this thread for now - but we'll change our minds if things go downhill.

    On the desktop front, you're clearly not happy with Gnome 3 (and many share your opinion). I also find Gnome 3 to be deeply lacking any usability, but my resolution was to switch my Fedora DE to Mate, which is based heavily on Gnome 2. I've also used Cinnamon which is quite nice too. You might want to take a look at these if you're still hunting an alternative.
    Linux user #126863 - see http://linuxcounter.net/

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