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Sun Joins Mac Open Office Development 171

Posted by kdawson
from the bye-bye-X11 dept.
widhalmt writes "In a blog post, a developer at Sun Microsystems announces that Sun will help with porting Open Office to Mac OS X. The open source office suite is well known on Linux and Windows, but does not have a native version on Mac OS. For a long time Sun did not want to join the development of that port but now they will actively push it."
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Sun Joins Mac Open Office Development

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  • Not true! NeoOffice! (Score:5, Informative)

    by wheatwilliams (605974) on Thursday May 03, 2007 @09:21AM (#18971291) Homepage
    OpenOffice.org runs on Mac OS X under X11.
    NeoOffice is an independently developed version of OpenOffice.org 2.1 which runs on Mac OS X natively and without the need for X11. I've been using it for years.
    • by crawling_chaos (23007) on Thursday May 03, 2007 @09:30AM (#18971391) Homepage

      I've been using it for years.
      So have I. Hopefully it will have fully started up by the end of next month. Then I can get some word processing done. I need to allow another six months before the spreadsheet module will open, I think.
      • by Angostura (703910)
        Well, you made me smile, but that is a little harsh, I think the recent versions of NeoOffice launch substantially faster. I've just tried, following a machine restart and v 2.1 launched in about 15 seconds. This is on a 2Ghz Core 2 Duo though. I agree start-up used to be tedious, especially on my old G4.
        • by Teilo (91279)

          And that is precisely the problem. Your increase in speed has absolutely nothing to do with the latest NeoOffice build, and everything to do with your Intel Mac. In 100% of the cases that I have heard NeoOffice users claiming that NeoOffice has improved, it is because they upgraded to an Intel Mac. Hello?! (And by the way, gasoline must really have improved recently, because I can suddenly drive a lot faster after I upgraded my '84 Honda Civic to a '07 T-bird).

          That's great for you. I envy you. But there are

          • by ronanbear (924575)
            Ah, but if you have an Intel Mac then Microsoft Office uses Rosetta. So relatively speaking, NeoOffice is far better on a MacBook than it every could be on an iBook.
          • by azuretek (708981)
            On my powerbook G4, 1.5ghz, NeoOffice is pretty snappy after I've started it. I'm not sure what you're talking about regarding the speed of the application after launch.

            Seems like you have a problem with NeoOffice/OOo in general, if you don't like it and it's not working for you then by all means pay for your software. I'm just glad people are putting their time and effort into making something usable that I can use for free.
            • by Teilo (91279)

              Seems like you have a problem with NeoOffice/OOo in general...

              This is the kneejerk reaction that I would expect from a typical Slashdot fanboy, which I am sure you are not. (You are welcome to correct me if I am wrong). I am an avid OOo user, and have been for as long as the product forked from StarOffice. The first thing I installed on my first Mac (the Powerbook G4 1.6Ghz that I am typing on right now) was the X11 build of OOo, because I already knew it well, and had an extensive library of docs in ODT and SXW format (Some 3 to 4 hundred to be exact, of my own wri

              • by fyngyrz (762201) *

                If you think that NeoOffice runs fine on your Powerbook G4, then you are either more patient than I, or you are not being honest with yourself. I mean, I can sit there watch the text from a freshly opened Writer document redraw, sometimes two or three times. Scrolling is slow, and halting.

                So I have a question about your laptop; I apologize in advance if you've already posted this. How much memory do you have in it? OSX, like every swapping OS I've ever encountered, slows down a lot when there isn't eno

          • by Angostura (703910)
            Err no. I noticed a definite speed improvement on the G4 mac with version 2.1. Unfortunately, the G4 went bang about a week ago, so I can't give you a timing on that machine, I only have the Intel timings. I never found NeoOffice a joy to use, but neither did I find it a slug. And that was on an 800MHz box.
        • by lewp (95638)
          It's annoying enough on my 2.33ghz mbp, but it's downright infuriating on my 1ghz pbg4. It may be faster (I don't know, up until I switched to the mbp I just used Office), but it's still dog slow.
      • Bollocks... I can't tell the difference in speed between NeoOffice under OSX, and Open Office under Darwin(X11).

        Of course, I am running a MacBook Pro with an Intel Core 2 Duo at 2+GHZ...

        If you are trying to run it on an Apple ][ - well, then that is another story... ;)
    • ...that it's a Java application. Sun is pushing for a non-Java, non-X11 native solution. I like NeoOffice as well and it has replaced Office 2004 for quite some time for me, but it would be nice to get the Java part out of the mix.
      • by tb3 (313150) on Thursday May 03, 2007 @10:01AM (#18971787) Homepage
        Sun is pushing for a non-Java, non-X11 native solution.
        I hope you appreciate the irony of that statement.
      • by caseih (160668)
        Umm, not quite. NeoOffice is written in the same language as OpenOffice. Mostly C++. Java is used to implement large parts of the UI (widgets, etc). NeoOffice java code acts as a bridge between the OpenOffice UI routines and Cocoa. In my experience it loads only slightly slower than OpenOffice for X11, which is dismally slow on any PPC. It's almost tolerable on the new dual core machines. Once NeoOffice loads up, it's performance is just fine. Java isn't that slow for apps, especially on OS X where
    • by McDutchie (151611) on Thursday May 03, 2007 @09:38AM (#18971493) Homepage

      OpenOffice.org runs on Mac OS X under X11. NeoOffice is an independently developed version of OpenOffice.org 2.1 which runs on Mac OS X natively and without the need for X11. I've been using it for years.

      Given its heavy use of Java I think the 'native' qualification is debatable. Some aspects are native (e.g. font management), which is certainly a major plus.

      Unfortunately, though, this application gives new meaning to the words 'slow' and 'bloated'. The author has also chosen to make its license (GPL) incompatible with OO.o's (LGPL) so that his porting efforts cannot be contributed back to the main project. That makes NeoOffice a very hostile fork. What's more, he is trying (against the terms of the GPL/LGPL) to limit free distribution [neooffice.org] by using the trademark loophole.

      So, I would say that while a port exists, it's both low quality and under bad management, and I welcome this new effort to do it properly.

      • Doesn't standard Open Office use a lot of Java too? I thought it was heavily Java based.
        • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

          by TheRaven64 (641858)
          OpenOffice.org uses Java a lot for things like plugins. This is so you can write an OO.o plugin and have it run on Solaris (x86 and SPARC) Linux, *BSD, or Windows without a recompile. NeoOffice/J uses Java for a lot more, including drawing the UI. It does this using the (now deprecated) Java/Cocoa bridge, which is much slower than using the Carbon or Cocoa calls directly, both from the overhead of Java and the overhead of the extra layer of indirection.
          • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

            by Anonymous Coward

            It does this using the (now deprecated) Java/Cocoa bridge
            Wrong. NeoOffice uses Apple's Java (which itself uses Cocoa), but not the deprecated CocoaJava.
            • All right, I think someone's confused. Java doesn't use any native GUI toolkits, except in AWT. (Not counting basic stuff like drawing windows.) And first of all, I'm pretty sure that Apple's implementation of AWT is based on Carbon, not Cocoa; second, nobody in their right mind uses AWT anymore. It's been unofficially deprecated ever since Swing came out. I'd be very surprised if NeoOffice used AWT for anything.
              • by radish (98371)
                Java doesn't use any native GUI toolkits, except in AWT
                Not really true anymore. Java 6 (Mustang) added support [java.net] for native component rendering in XP/Vista and GTK from Swing. Not there on OSX yet (AFAIK), but hopefully soon. A lot of the JDesktop stuff (desktop integration support) is implemented on OSX.

                nobody in their right mind uses AWT anymore. It's been unofficially deprecated ever since Swing came out
                Well, Swing is built on top of AWT, so anyone using Swing is by definition also using AWT. It's true tha
      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        The author has also chosen to make its license (GPL) incompatible with OO.o's (LGPL) so that his porting efforts cannot be contributed back to the main project. That makes NeoOffice a very hostile fork. What's more, he is trying (against the terms of the GPL/LGPL) to limit free distribution by using the trademark loophole.

        Yes and no, I would consier the GPL to be the preferable license to use over the LGPL, regardless of what OOo does. Also, he "limits" free distribution by charging for free binararies o

      • by nine-times (778537) <nine.times@gmail.com> on Thursday May 03, 2007 @10:29AM (#18972195) Homepage

        Unfortunately, though, this application gives new meaning to the words 'slow' and 'bloated'.

        Well, it's not snappy, but it's certainly better than the "nothing" that OpenOffice has been offering in terms of native OSX ports.

        The author has also chosen to make its license (GPL) incompatible with OO.o's (LGPL) so that his porting efforts cannot be contributed back to the main project. That makes NeoOffice a very hostile fork.

        I'd probably be hostile, too. IIRC, the backstory with NeoOffice was that they were trying to work with OOo on a native OSX port, and not only did Sun refuse to help, but they basically sabotaged their efforts. Rather than give up, these guys split off and started their own project, and because of that, OSX users have had a very functional free office suite for OSX for a couple years now.

        What's more, he is trying (against the terms of the GPL/LGPL) to limit free distribution by using the trademark loophole.

        Protecting your trademark is not a "loophole". All sorts of projects, whether they're commercial (Redhat) or not (Mozilla), protect their trademarks. Worst case scenario?-- you take the source and strip out trademarked graphics/names, recompile, and then you're free to distribute the results however you want (under the GPL).

        I don't want to be misunderstood: I'm happy that Sun is finally porting OpenOffice to OSX. The result may very well be superior to NeoOffice, and if so I'll use Sun's version. However, they've been taking their sweet damn time, and in the mean time, the NeoOffice team has made a very useful bit of software. I don't think we should be belittling the NeoOffice team and their terrific efforts simply because they don't have the resources to perfect their port. They've been doing a lot with very little while OOo has been doing practically nothing with their bounty.

        • by metamatic (202216)

          Protecting your trademark is not a "loophole". All sorts of projects, whether they're commercial (Redhat) or not (Mozilla), protect their trademarks. Worst case scenario?-- you take the source and strip out trademarked graphics/names, recompile, and then you're free to distribute the results however you want (under the GPL).

          And including proprietary code in your GPL program to make it unredistributable isn't a loophole, so long as people can strip out your code, recompile, and distribute the result, right

          • If you put proprietary code into your GPL program and release it, that code is now released to the GPL. That's the way it works, so no, there's no loophole there.

            But this is the same thing as the Firefox/Iceweasel issue. You strip out a couple trademark graphics and replace them with anything, change a couple pieces of text, and you're done. You haven't lost any functionality.

            So basically you can redistribute NeoOffice however you want, but you just can't necessarily call it "NeoOffice" or use their lo

            • by metamatic (202216)
              You are intentionally being obtuse.

              It is trivial to make program code dependent upon graphics which contain trademarked logos, or a UI which is trademarked.

              For instance, suppose Apple took some GPL MP3/AAC playing code, added a UI to match that of the iPod, and released it as iTunes for Linux. They could do this and prohibit redistribution, because they have trademarked the appearance of the iPod. If you think it would be trivial to remove the entire UI without losing any functionality, well, you're not a p
              • What are you talking about? Graphics to make a UI match the iPod....?

                Look, you can only trademark rather specific things: Logos and names, basically. You can copyright specific graphics or patent UI features, but that's totally different from what we're talking about. In short, no, you can't trademark the GUI in the way you're describing.

                There is no "loophole". What do you think Debian would do if I started distributing my own version of "Debian Linux" using their branding, artwork, and logo, includin

        • by McDutchie (151611)

          I'd probably be hostile, too. IIRC, the backstory with NeoOffice was that they were trying to work with OOo on a native OSX port, and not only did Sun refuse to help, but they basically sabotaged their efforts.

          I don't know the history but I'm a bit skeptical. Clashes like these usually have more to do with personalities and egos than anything else, and the NeoOffice website has 'huge big ego' written all over it. Since OOo is software libre, I don't see how it's possible to 'sabotage' a fork except by refu

          • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

            by nine-times (778537)

            Since OOo is software libre, I don't see how it's possible to 'sabotage' a fork except by refusing to cooperate with it. And given that the fork's license is incompatible with the main tree, I can see why they would refuse to cooperate.

            Again, this is my recollection from the public statements when NeoOffice was starting, but originally they were working with OOo, not on a separate project, so I don't believe the license was different at that time. After they put in a certain amount of work, Sun made it cl

    • by nurb432 (527695)
      But that is a 'fork', so to speak. Its not 'official'.

      Its all about semantics.
    • by slughead (592713)
      NeoOffice is an independently developed version of OpenOffice.org 2.1 which runs on Mac OS X natively and without the need for X11. I've been using it for years.

      And it's buggy as hell. I've been using it to write reports for end-of-term papers due recently. The only reason I was even able to stand it is its remarkable recovery features for when it crashes... and oh, does it ever crash. Version 2.0 wouldn't let me save or quit; I'd simply force-quit it and recover every document I ever wrote every time I res
      • by frdmfghtr (603968)

        On the other hand, I have a legal license of M$ office but for some reason it wont let me enter in my license code because of the trial version pre-installed on my Mac. No matter how many times I install it, it references the hidden preferences file (which I haven't had time to locate) and determines that it's the now-expired trial version. So I guess you can take your pick of the problems.

        When you uninstalled the trial version, did you just drag and drop the app to the trash or did you run the Office uni

      • I know I'll get flamed for this, but I'll post anyway. I always use LaTeX for school assignments. Since I turn in hard copies, it doesn't matter what file format I use. And I can't bring myself to care about the formatting standards for assignments, so it is very useful to be able to import the MLA or APA packages and get on with the typing. LaTeX isn't just for math papers.

        Since you have obviously had a lot of trouble with word processors, it is probably worth your time to download TeXShop and try it out.
      • by soft_guy (534437) *
        If you don't need compatibility with Word, there are better word processors available for Mac such as NissusWriter.
    • NeoOffice is an independently developed version of OpenOffice.org 2.1 which runs on Mac OS X natively and without the need for X11. I've been using it for years.

      It was useable until it started opening Safari on launch and close- loading a page nagging me to give them money.

      The unprofessionalism of that is absolutely staggering. The only other application I know of that does this is Acquisition- probably the most nag-laden software ever written.

    • Here is NeoOffice's official statement [neooffice.org].

      W
    • by 7Prime (871679)
      NeoOffice is a joke, and a disgrace against professional office applications. I had it on my computer... I switched back to TextEdit in a week. Using Java as a foundation is just inexusable.

      This is great news!
  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 03, 2007 @09:28AM (#18971385)
    The OpenOffice developers doing the porting should send an email [slashdot.org] to Steve Jobs asking him to help end this outrageous and inexcusable incompatibility issue. It worked for Greenpeace and J. Maynard Gelinas!
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by TheRaven64 (641858)
      The native port guys are getting some unofficial help from Apple already, although I believe it is more in the form of advice than code. And not the 'we recommend you don't bother' kind of advice; the Apple people helped put together the porting strategy, in the same way they have done for several commercial applications wishing to release a Mac version.
  • Amazing (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Praxxus (19048) on Thursday May 03, 2007 @09:35AM (#18971459) Homepage
    First we get news that Microsoft was recently acting all Mac Happy, and now Sun is acting Mac Happy. My, my, my, but these coincidences of timing in the software world never cease to boggle the mind!
    • First we get news that Microsoft was recently acting all Mac Happy, and now Sun is acting Mac Happy. My, my, my, but these coincidences of timing in the software world never cease to boggle the mind!

      Thanks for making my prediction come true. My prediction was that, this being Slashdot, there will be a Sun-hater who will find a way to interpret this as a bad thing. Sun is putting resources towards improving an open-source project (yes, a GPL one), so we've got to find a way to interpret that as a bad th

  • Will they unarchive? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Frequency Domain (601421) on Thursday May 03, 2007 @09:36AM (#18971481)
    Sun already owns the rights to Lighthouse Design [wikipedia.org]'s application suite. Since these were originally developed for NeXTstep/OpenStep, they should be relatively easy to migrate to Cocoa. I'd sure like to see an Improv/Quantrix like spreadsheet tool put a stake through the heart of Excel!
    • Improv (Score:4, Interesting)

      by jefu (53450) on Thursday May 03, 2007 @09:47AM (#18971613) Homepage Journal

      Having Improv back would be wonderful. The best spreadsheet I've ever used - using Improv made using Excel or other grid based spreadsheets painful.

      But then too, there was also this oddball thing called (I think, its been some years) "Advance", I only had a couple weeks to play with a test copy. Very powerful, rather strange. I'd like to have that back to play with too.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by TheRaven64 (641858)
      Mod parent up! I would absolutely love to see Sun open source Quantrix. Given the age of the program, I would imagine it would also be possible to use GNUstep to run it on *NIX, although neither GNUstep nor OS X support the old nib file format, making the port a little bit of effort.
    • by linguae (763922)

      Sun doesn't own the rights to Improv; Improv was a Lotus product, so you'll have to talk to IBM about that.

      • That's why I put the word "like" after "Quantrix/Improv". Here, I'll use it a few more times for you: Quantrix was very much like Improv in philosophy, and I would very much like to see a spreadsheet like either one of 'em. The fact that Sun has the OpenStep code-base for Quantrix in their archives gives me some hope that it could happen. Then again, I've always been an optimist.
  • by realinvalidname (529939) on Thursday May 03, 2007 @09:39AM (#18971507) Homepage

    From the blog:

    MacOSX and Aqua are quite new to me, so please bear with me as I learn about this (for me) exciting new platform at first. Certainly I will have many questions for my fellow Mac porters. However I can contribute ~10 years experience with vcl which I think the port can benefit from.

    The problem has always been that OO.o makes assumptions about GUI development that are well-suited to X11 and Windows, and not well-suited to Aqua. The question is, can someone who's learning Mac development as he goes push changes back to OO.o to make it more suitable for Aqua and other GUI toolkits? Can he do it before Sun changes their mind and de-funds the Mac port? Sun has a habit of funding things for about six months and then getting cold feet.

    Which reminds me: I should throw some money at Ed and Patrick for their continued work on NeoOffice [neooffice.org], which uses Java as a GUI adapter (!) to get OO.o tolerable on the Mac

  • by jshriverWVU (810740) on Thursday May 03, 2007 @09:42AM (#18971557)
    I use to have a dual G4 machine 5 or so years ago when OS 10 came out and it ran Open Office. I think the big problem is that it used the X interface instead of Aqua, so maybe that's what they're concerned about. But from a user perspective I had no problem using just the plain ol' X11R6 version. Think it was via Fink.
    • It's not Mac compatible. It's X11 compatible. X11 is ugly, doesn't use my fonts, and is hard to print from. Saying something that runs in X11 is "Mac compatible" is like saying something that runs in Cygwin is "Windows compatible."

  • by HerculesMO (693085) on Thursday May 03, 2007 @10:42AM (#18972421)
    It still pales in comparison to MS Office.

    Yes, I am complimenting Microsoft -- I am sure I'll be flamed for it. But frankly, they make the best office suite, and since theirs is the standard look and feel (although the new Office is a departure), the other guys have to play catchup.

    I would love to use OpenOffice, I just hate the look and feel and have always been more comfortable in Microsoft Office.
    • by Mattintosh (758112) on Thursday May 03, 2007 @11:28AM (#18973207)
      As much as we /.-ers love to bash Microsoft, there comes a point when you just have to give them a bit of credit for their office suite. I've used Office, and I've used OO.o. They both get the job done. They both are usable for 75% of what needs to get done with an office suite. But MS Office just has more polish. For example:

      - Keeping an informal "database" of crap in Excel or Calc - Both will sort the list by whatever column your highlighted cell is in if you hit one of the "A->Z" or "Z->A" buttons. But Calc will treat the column headings as data and sort them into the middle of the list! Excel knows that the first line is not data if it's a different text style from the rest of the list. Polish.
      - Printing in Excel or Calc - Having a sheet loaded and trying to print will print the whole entire freaking spreadsheet, all sheets, all ranges in Calc. That's just stupid. Excel will (for obvious reasons) default to printing only the sheet you're on. More polish.
      - Mail merging in Word or Writer - Trying to get Writer to realize that "mail merge" doesn't necessarily mean "i'm writing a form letter and want to import addresses" is like pulling teeth. Word has no problem with just binding whatever data to a form. Polish(x1). Also, Word doesn't force you (or confuse you) into creating an Access database when you just want to import an informal list of crap from Excel. Writer DOES try to get you to make a Base .odb file when you try to just pull data from a Calc sheet. MS Office Polish(x2). Then there's the lack of a data-bound preview... (or at least one that's as simple as Word's - a toggle button on a toolbar or a checked menu item).

      Now, none of these are absolute deal-breakers, nor do they show that OO.o is somehow unworthy of attention. On the contrary, it shows that OO.o needs more attention, and from people who actually use the features they're coding. MS Office will only get better if there's pressure on MS to make it better, and OO.o is probably the best hope for applying that kind of pressure. I just think that MS really deserves some credit for making Office a decent app suite. They've done far more than most /.-ers want to acknowledge.

      Just to clarify, none of this applies to the Windows vs. Linux debate. I want Windows to just go die in a fire. It really needs to be flushed like all the other turds.
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by markdavis (642305)
        Just a few observations:

        >But Calc will treat the column headings as data and sort them into the middle of the list!
        >Excel knows that the first line is not data if it's a different text style from the rest of the list. Polish.

        Um, I use calc all the time. It's default is that the first row is headings and it will not "sort them into the middle of the list" unless you specifically tell it to do that.

        >Having a sheet loaded and trying to print will print the whole entire freaking spreadsheet, all sheet
    • It still pales in comparison to MS Office.
      You are right because MS Office for Mac has Office 2007 format compatibility... oh wait, that's Open Office and NeoOffice. Well the next version of MS Office for mac will have VBA support... oh wait, that's Open Office and Neo Office again as Office 2008 for Mac will drop VBA support.

      How is MS Office for mac better again?

      • How is MS Office for mac better again?

        Usability. This is what makes a good product better. You can have all the functionality in the world, but if it is complicated to get at then it doesn't matter, since its as if it wasn't there.
  • Sun's history and reputation on the Mac with things not related to the JVM is pretty awful. This has as much of a chance of seeing the light of day in a usable format as their version of Watson [karelia.com]. Give it a year and by then Sun will have 'realigned their priorities' via reorg or a RIF will have wiped out the group that is working on this.
  • by ironring2006 (968941) on Thursday May 03, 2007 @10:45AM (#18972473)
    As someone who has used OOo on Windows/Linux/OS X, I have to admit that the OS X X11 implementation feels like the biggest kludge. I've been attempting to move all my documents over to the ODF, but everytime I boot up OOo on my Mac, I get frustrated with so many things about it. As slow as Word is on OS X running under Rosetta, recently I've been finding myself using that much more. I haven't tried Neooffice yet, because I can't imagine using something slower. On the other hand, I've found OOo quite a good replacement under windows.

    So I say, bring it on! I think that getting a good implementation of OOo running natively under Aqua is key in the cause of reducing reliance on Microsoft. People switching to Linux obviously are going to use OOo or some other open format, but still too many people switching to Mac are relying on Microsoft. It'll be curious to see whether they take Firefox's approach to have the interface be consistent across the board, or if they try and take advantage of OS X's toolkits and design guides to make it a true Mac application.

  • by EricTheGreen (223110) on Thursday May 03, 2007 @10:55AM (#18972657) Homepage
    I'm not optimistic about an OO port to native Mac, regardless of who is on board with it. Why should I be, given the legendary code cruft of OO, the lousy relationship relationship dynamics between the Mac- and non-Mac developer leads on OO, the well-intentioned-but-ghastly-performance object lesson of NeoOffice?

    OO is very decent office suite on Linux and Windows. So leave it there, where it is working acceptably. I think any effort to take that code base and reconcile it to an acceptable UI and functional level on the Mac will be the definition of a trip down the rabbit hole, taking years to realize and resulting in a UI compromise that annoys users on all platforms.

    Time to cut bait on this, accept that it never will be workable on the Mac, and free its development team to focus on improving it in the Lin/Win world. Better to spend development time and effort developing a Mac-specific office suite that uses the various Open*** file formats as its native storage, while providing a real Cocoa-based UI experience that actually integrates into OS X the way Mac users expect an application to. Not that Sun will come within a mile of such an initiative, but it's a great opportunity for frustrated Mac developers looking to solve a real practical problem...

    • How're you doing the port? Using Cocoa or Carbon? regards, Lars

      Currently the plan is to use Carbon. [PhillippL]

      MS Office is Carbonized, so right there you know you that route is lame! VoiceOver [apple.com] users [macvisionaries.com] are desperate for something they can use besides TextEdit. Accessibility comes for free with Cocoa [apple.com]! It is a PITA for Carbon [apple.com] (so much so, that Apple only made iTunes accessible with the last 7.1.1 release).

      Or is Carbon especially appropriate for legendary code cruft? (MS Office and iTunes are also

      • Or is Carbon especially appropriate for legendary code cruft?

        Finder is Carbon. Safari is Carbon. Any application not written specifically for Cocoa (or next/Open/GNUstep), or where the application can't be basically treated as a support library for a completely new user interface, pretty much has to be Carbon.
        • I believe you that Cocoa is not an option for OOo, but I am not happy about it. Carbon seems to be the path of least resistance for cross platform stuff.

          Finder is Carbon.

          Which is at the root of why it still sucks.

          Safari is Carbon.

          Not the GUI (which is why, for example, it works with VoiceOver, but Camino does not). I was surprised to learn that it does have some Carbon in it still. It certainly does not feel nor act like a carbonized app. http://forums.macosxhints.com/showthread.php?t=633 89 [macosxhints.com]

          • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

            by argent (18001)
            Carbon is not justthe path of least resistance... it's the *only* option for cross-platform stuff unless Apple releases OpenStep again or endorses GNUstep... and that still won't help existing applications.

            Safari is a wrapper around Webkit. Webkit is a port of KHTML, written in C++, and is the majority of the code in Safari: any Cocoa code is in the "shell" or in what are effectively Cocoa plug-ins. Camino is a similar wrapper, though somewhat simpler, around the Gecko HTML component from Mozilla/Firefox. T
  • With the upcoming Cairo-based version of Gtk+, Gtk+ is turning into an excellent cross-platform toolkit.

    I think it would do OpenOffice a world of good to adopt Gtk+ as the standard toolkit and gradually phase out its own internal toolkit. By sharing the cross-platform development with Gtk+, both OpenOffice and Gtk+ would benefit.
    • With the upcoming Cairo-based version of Gtk+, Gtk+ is turning into an excellent cross-platform toolkit.

      I think it would do OpenOffice a world of good to adopt Gtk+ as the standard toolkit and gradually phase out its own internal toolkit. By sharing the cross-platform development with Gtk+, both OpenOffice and Gtk+ would benefit.

      No thank you. Gtk+ will not help make it more native on the mac. While gtk+ might look ok on linux or windows, it looks like crap on OS X.

      • No thank you. Gtk+ will not help make it more native on the mac. While gtk+ might look ok on linux or windows, it looks like crap on OS X.

        Right now, it does. Right now, OpenOffice and NeoOffice look like crap on OS X. The question is which one has a better chance of stopping to look like crap any time soon, and that is Gtk+, not OpenOffice's built-in cross platform toolkit that nobody else uses.

        As for the general style of your response, you'd apparently cut off your nose to spite your face. People like y
  • spreadsheet app. I do not remember its name, but about 3 years ago, I was helping my neighbor move to a bunch of OOS on his mac. Tried to move him to OOfice and that was a nightmare. Neo did not cut it. More importantly, moving off of his old app was going to be copy and paste time. Wicked.
  • One would hope that Apple, in its expansion of development staff and facilities, would acquire the guys who produce NeoOffice, or at least hire them as consultants -- as that's already 98% of the way toward what OpenOffice should hope to achieve in a Mac distribution -- and have them guide things, as they already know where the bodies are buried between OpenOffice and OS X.

    Lord knows they deserve to get something out of their years of hard work making NeoOffice the svelte speedster it is today.
  • It's great social policy for Sun to spread OOo, and I admire that. Hopefully this port will be of benefit to somebody years from now. Of course, in the real world, we can't wait. We need our tools today.

    I run OOo 2.x when stuck on a Windows box, and Writer, at least, is decent. While it may look and feel dated, I couldn't care less. It gets the job done.

    What didn't work for me were the X11 and NeoOffice ports: sluggish, fussy on early 2000s-era PPC hardware. I even tried setting up a relative's busin

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