Date: prev next · Thread: first prev next last

Le 2010-10-20 12:40, James Walker a écrit :
You know, my biggest thought is that if we want to get LibO into a more
widespread acceptance then we have to get into the Schools.

You tend to stick with what you learn first and that should be our
number-1 goal.


One great success of the open-software movement is Mozilla. When Internet Explorer appeared, Netscape almost disappeared off the map. Then slowly but surely it gained ground, especially when it became Firefox. It is now not only the browser of geeks, but also a major contender amongst browsers. If we want LibreOffice to become a major contender and be in a similar position within a few years, I think there are a few lessons that might be gained from that experience.

1. Make it easy to use, yet visually appealing. Plain vanilla Firefox is already visually appealing out of the box (better than IE but not as much as Chrome), and plenty of themes and personas help make it even more appealing.

2. Make it fully compatible with what is around. It is relatively easy with web browser: it works as long as the browser reads the page. For Mozilla programmers, it does not make sense to say that something doesn't work because "the page is not standard"; they have to bend over backwards. Likewise, I think that people will embrace LibreOffice when they are sure that their documents will be read without any formatting surprize by their teachers who have Word. There is no point saying that "your professor should download LibreOffice (or OpenOffice)": it's like arguing with a police officer by the roadside (especially if you are drunk...). And no, PDF is not the same! Likewise, people have a large base of existing documents. I very often rewrite technical documents using files that were made in the 1990s. So true file compatibility to Office 2003 format and from Office 2003 and 2010 formats should be aimed as much as possible. When that happens, LibreOffice will spread and eventually it will be the other way around: Microsoft, Corel and Lotus will aim for true ODF file compatibility. But we aren't there yet.

3. I think people are ready to learn a new interface if they feel it's worthed. It has to be easier, more intuitive, or allow to do more things, for example.

4. I have read often that modules in LibreOffice share a lot of code. However, the user does not feel it. For example, headers in Calc don't work the same way as headers in Writer.

5. On the other hand, is it necessary to keep the entire suite as a suite? Would it be easier to develop modules separately, yet with tight integration, a little bit like Firefox vs Thunderbird?

Michel Gagnon
Montréal (Québec, Canada) --

E-mail to for instructions on how to unsubscribe
List archives are available at
All messages you send to this list will be publicly archived and cannot be deleted


Privacy Policy | Impressum (Legal Info) | Copyright information: Unless otherwise specified, all text and images on this website are licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 License. This does not include the source code of LibreOffice, which is licensed under the Mozilla Public License (MPLv2). "LibreOffice" and "The Document Foundation" are registered trademarks of their corresponding registered owners or are in actual use as trademarks in one or more countries. Their respective logos and icons are also subject to international copyright laws. Use thereof is explained in our trademark policy.