Oracle Open Office is dead – long live LibreOffice?

I have to admit that back in 1984, (being sweet little 17 myself in these days) when some 16-year-old German guy (Marco Börries) started writing the first Office Software that came across my Commodore 64, I did not anticipate that some 25 years later I will blog news about still the same topic but in the www instead of using my modem and mailboxes.

A recent Oracle press release concerning Oracle Open Office states:

“Given the breadth of interest in free personal productivity applications and the rapid evolution of personal computing technologies, we believe the OpenOffice.org project would be best managed by an organization focused on serving that broad constituency on a non-commercial basis…”.

In other words: “We do not sell this anymore”.

Images can express more than words: The corresponding Oracle Office Website of today says:


This is speed in internet times.

As historical background one has to know, that back in September 2010 some open office developers founded The Document Foundation with Google, Novell and RedHat and also FSF, GNOME and OSI in their supporters list, offering LibreOffice and asking Oracle, it they could name it OpenOffice.org having “no” as Oracle’s answer later on. In the meantime UbuntuFedoraOpenSUSE and Debian announced support for LibreOffice or already delivered it.

Today, in reaction of the Oracle announcement, the Steering Committee of the Document Foundation states they “already represent a future path of development to the Open Source community” but everybody is still welcome.

For even more political overview, it might be worth knowing, that OpenOffice is the (somehow wrapped by Eclipse RCP) Office Software behind IBM’s Lotus Symphony

so almost everybody in Software Industry will have read these news I suppose.

Even that LibreOffice supports to open and save MOX documents (others calling them Microsoft Office 2007/2010 documents) but is NOT SUPPORTING OOXML but ODF (“because it is important to understand that these formats, also called OOXML are in fact somewhat different from the ISO standard bearing the same name”) is so political that it has to be clarified that this feature could be turned off.

Hey Marco, did you anticipate it?

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