Software Update: KOffice 2.0.0

KOffice is a complete open source office package aimed at the KDE desktop environment. It consists of a number of different applications, such as a word processor (KWord), a spreadsheet program (KSpread), a presentation program (KPresenter), a project management program (KPlato), a drawing program (Krita), and a database program (Kexi). With the introduction of Qt 4 and KDE 4, it became possible to use them on platforms other than Linux and Unix. The developers of KOffice have been busy making their application suitable for Qt 4 and KDE 4, and as a result have finally released version 2.0.0. It should be noted, however, that this release does not target end users yet. Several parts from the previous version have not yet been fully converted and are therefore not yet included. The announcement for KOffice 2.0.0 looks like this:

KOffice 2.0.0 released

The KOffice team is extremely pleased to finally announce version 2.0.0 of KOffice. This release marks the end of more than 3 years of work to port KOffice to Qt 4 and the KDE 4 libraries and, in some cases, totally rewrite the engine of the KOffice applications.

Over the last few years, the KOffice team has reworked the framework into an agile and flexible codebase. Our intention was to increase integration between the components of KOffice, decrease duplication of functionality and ease maintenance and development of new features. Furthermore, new approaches to UI design and interacting with the user have been implemented to support the new capabilities.

Targeted Audience

Our goal for now is to release a first preview of what we have accomplished. This release is mainly aimed at developers, testers and early adopters. It is not aimed at end users, and we do not recommend Linux distributions to package it as the default office suite yet.

KOffice 2.0 will be useful for some users, but since it is the first release in a long series it is likely to contain bugs and incompatibilities.

It is noteworthy that KOffice 2.0 does not have all the features that KOffice 1.6 had. These features will return in the upcoming versions 2.1 and 2.2, in most cases better implemented and more efficient. Also, not all applications which were part of KOffice 1.6 made it into KOffice 2.0. The missing applications will return in 2.1 or possible 2.2.

Components

The release team has decided that the following applications are mature enough to be part of 2.0:

  • KWord – Word processor
  • KSpread – Spreadsheet calculator
  • KPresenter – Presentation manager
  • KPlato – Project management software
  • Karbon – Vector graphics editor
  • Krita – Raster graphics editor

The chart application KChart is available as a shape plugin, which means that charts are available in all the KOffice applications in an integrated manner.

The desktop database creator Kexi and the formula shape are aimed to be available in version 2.1. Kivio, the flowchart editor, is currently without maintainer and it is not certain when or if it will be released.

Highlights of KOffice 2

KOffice 2 is a much more flexible application suite than KOffice 1 ever was. The integration between the components is much stronger, with the revolutionary Flake Shapes as the central concept. A Flake Shape can be as simple as a square or a circle or as complex as a chart or a music score.

With Flake, any KOffice application can handle any shape. For instance, KWord can embed bitmap graphics, Krita can embed vector graphics and Karbon can embed charts. This flexibility does not only give KOffice unprecedented integration, but also allows new applications to be created very easily. Such applications can eg target special user groups like kids or certain professions.

Unified Look and Feel

All the applications of KOffice has a new GUI layout better suited to todays wider screens. The GUI consists of a workspace and a sidebar where tools can dock. Any tool can be ripped off to create its own window and later be redocked fo full flexibility. The users setup preferences are of course saved and reused the next time that KOffice is started.

Platform Independence

All of KOffice is available on Linux with KDE or GNOME, Windows and Macintosh. Solaris will follow shortly and we expect builds for other Unix versions to become available soon after the final release. It is possible that the release of binaries for Windows and Macintosh will occur after some time if other packages that KOffice depend on need more time.

Since KOffice builds on Qt and the KDE libraries, all applications integrate well with the respective platforms and will take on the native look and feel.

Native Support for OpenDocument

The OASIS OpenDocument Format (ODF) is the ISO standard for office document interchange. ODF has been selected as the national standard for many countries around the world, and continues to grow stronger every month.

KOffice uses the OpenDocument Format as its native format. This will guarantee interoperability with many other Office packages such as OpenOffice.org and MS Office. The KOffice team has representatives on the OASIS technical committee for ODF and has been a strong participant in the process of shaping ODF since its inception.

Bug Reports and User Feedback

The developers are very interested in user feedback and bug reports. Please report bugs that you find on the KDE bugzilla bugs.kde.org. In particular, the KOffice Team is interested in bugs in the following areas:

  • OpenDocument support
  • crashes
  • Errors on non-Unix platforms since most developers run Linux and may overlook these.

Version number 2.0.0
Release status Final
Operating systems Linux, BSD, Windows XP, macOS, Windows Vista
Website KOffice Project
Download http://www.koffice.org/wordpress/category/news/downloads/
License type GPL
Comments
Loading...