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Hello Tom,

I think Jay is asking good questions, that can be answered very simply but
are more of a perception matter than anything else. I would invite him to
the marketing list, btw. I believe you are missing his point in your own
comments so let me just comment on his email, as it is the kind of feedback
the people who have been involved in and then LibreOffice
have heard for years. It's basically about the fear of change. It's not
that irrational, as such a change can be experienced as a problem in any
organization, and it may cost the CIO a lot. Sometimes its career. Yet, the
"roll out costs" need to be very accurately defined, because a constant
pattern in the migration is the one that basically flags all the
difficulties over to the office suite you are migrating TO but never the
solution you're migrating from (this can be said from any IT migration or
so, by the way). A good example is the VBA macros. VBA macros have been
entirely developed by MSFT for MS Office. It's a major trap, and at the
risk of hurting a few people, it has more often than not been the tool of
the employee (from the clerk to the exec) who had no skill in software
programming but wanted to cook its own little recipe. That recipe however,
can only work within a pure MS Office environment, and make no mistake,
MSFT intends to keep it that way. So when there's a migration away from MS
Office, guess what happens very often: people complain that macros do not
work or have been suppressed by, say, LibreOffice. But no one seems to put
the blame on MSOffice, nor even on the team who made the decision to
sometimes insert macros deep down their crucial documents and information
systems. So they input the macros issue and the document rewrites to the
migration away from MS Office, but instead they ought to input that as
"exit costs" from MS Office and input them in their acquisition costs of
MSOffice in the first place. It sounds like theory, but it's a matter of
perception. Acquiring MSOffice just because "everybody else does" is not
rational. But acquiring MSOffice licenses and calculating the whole TCO
including the exit costs makes sense. Not everyone does that.

I'd love to have Jay discuss these things here, if possible. BTW: you miss
the point on the LTS version and we already discussed that times and times
over, it will not help people like Jay, whether we release three versions
per week or one per year (btw: we used to sometimes release one version
every 9 months at, and we had exactly the same issue.
They're not related).


2012/8/8 Tom Davies <>

Hi :)
Is LO really free?

Roll-out costs.
One advantage of LTS (=Long Term Support) or the slow plodding pace of MS
(with many years between releases) is that roll-out costs and the time
involved is only incurred every few years, rather than every month or so.
Are there ever likely to be any plans to address this?

Perceptions and re-training
People still seem to think that LO is going to be difficult for people to
learn how to use despite it's similarity to MS Office 2003 menus.  Somehow
people/managers still seem to think that upgrading from one version of MSO
to another or from Xp to Win7 or Win8 is going to be trivially easy.  After
all it's all still MS right?  and MS is easy right?  (Wrong on both counts
but that often still seems to be the perception).

The marketing teams and individuals such as the chap in Greece are doing a
great job of changing people's perceptions but it's a constant "up hill"
struggle.  The more we can get LO out there and being seen and talked about
the more the perception can be turned around.  Firefox managed it but
awareness about LO seems to have grown faster, perhaps partly due to being
able to point to FF as a similar project but mostly just because of the
hard work put in by people here.

I keep hearing that  the biggest blockers are to do with stability and
roll-out costs, and lack of an LTS but we have no control over those

We hear stories of this&that organisation that has realised about
potential savings on licensing fees which is great but we are setting-up a
scenario when in a couple of years those same organisations switch back to
MSO, due to the blockers, and become highly vocal about it.

Regards from
Tom :)

--- On Wed, 8/8/12, Jay Lozier <> wrote:

From: Jay Lozier <>
Subject: Re: [libreoffice-users] Do You Share ODF Documents With MS Office
Date: Wednesday, 8 August, 2012, 3:26

On 08/07/2012 08:24 PM, rob wood wrote:
From my experience of working in the IT department of a very large
with over 10 000 computers, it has nothing to do with functionality.
of employees use office to type letters and send emails. For the .1% that
would use advanced features, policy probably disallows them anyway. Plus,
it is fairly trivial to have different images for those that need/want

The reason they don't migrate is because it would create more work for
IT department, it is that simple. Plus there is no benefit as far as the
department is concerned. Office 2003 works, and whoever approves the
is just going to accept however much is put in there for it, that is if
is actually a separate item and not bundled in with the other microsoft

Office = safe.
LO = risky + more work.

I would second that most users do not use advanced features of any the
MSO parts. Very few can actually program/write a macro and macro
execution should normally be turned off for security reasons.

The reasons for not updating MSO version or using another office suite
(LO, AOO, etc) are roll out costs, roll out time, inertia (no real
business reason to change), and perceptions about users finding the new
suite difficult to use.

On 8 August 2012 00:11, Steve Morris <hidden> wrote:

Just my 2 cents worth. Businesses with a heavy investment in office
migrate to LO, as LO is not a functional replacement for office 2002,
alone 2010. A lot of business functionality that is used from day to day
and is critical to the organisation in order for their various business
units to operate, from say excel, that libreoffice does not provide,
in 3.6, and features that excel allows that Calc disallows (as far as I
see for no good reason). Another reason for not migrating is also the
learning curve, both with front end functionality and macros, that
cannot afford to undertake due to the loss of time and resources.


Jay Lozier

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