Dubbed “5.3 Fresh,” this latest release takes the development of LibreOffice in a new direction with a focus on updating the user experience, according to Italo Vignoli of the Document Foundation. The 3.x Family centered on code cleanup, while the 4.x Family focused on code Refactoring.
LibreOffice was launched as a fork of OpenOffice.org on September 28, 2010, by a tiny group of people representing the community in their capacity as community project leaders. At the time, forking the office suite was a brave—and necessary—decision, because the open source community did not expect OpenOffice.org to survive for long under Oracle stewardship.
The Document Foundation announces LibreOffice 5.0, the tenth major release since the launch of the project and the first of the third development cycle. LibreOffice is a full feature open source office suite which compares head to head with every product in the same category, while it stands out for superior interoperability features.
LibreOffice 5.0 builds on the success of the 4.x family, which has been deployed by over 80 million users (source: TDF estimate, based on users pinging for updates), including large organizations in Europe and South America.
Microsoft released the preview edition of Office 2016 for Mac. It’s downloadable here for free, with a final release expected “later this summer” and available for use via an Office 365 subscription.
Office 2011 for Mac was a mess of a release in terms of interface. At the top of the document window was a toolbar, followed by a collapsible tab bar with multiple levels of buttons, all in various shades of gray. Office 2016 is a vast improvement.
Google, in a surprise move, today announced support for ODF (Open Document Format) in its products. I remember the days when I had to sheepishly asked people who wanted to share files with me to go back to .doc or .docx as none of the Google properties would talk to ODF files. That was quite embarrassing because I invested a lot of time in liberating those people from Microsoft’s vendor-locked file formats.
Comparing LibreOffice and Apache OpenOffice is like comparing identical twins. Even people who know them well have trouble distinguishing one from the other, and, when you find a difference, it is often trivial. All the same, the differences are growing, and LibreOffice has at least eleven advantages over OpenOffice – see the list below.
The Document Foundation announced the release of LibreOffice 3.6.6. This version, available for those more conservative users, is said to have arrived with over 50 bug fixes, many of which were back-ported from LibreOffice 4 and most of which were quite juicy. It’s always recommended to upgraded to the latest release.