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Month: November 2011

Re: [trinity-devel] KOffice Suite

From: Kristopher John Gamrat <chaotickjg@...>
Date: Tue, 22 Nov 2011 14:53:03 -0500
On Tuesday 22 November 2011 02:34:31 pm Darrell Anderson wrote:
> > Well there are certain applications like Krita that are not
> > replaceable, and no other programs currently provide their
> > functions. 
> > 
> > Anyway, this discussion has already happened a while back.
> Yes, there was a discussion this past summer. The only thing decided was KOffice was not going to be deprecated or abandoned for 3.5.13. Several people noted KOffice provides several apps that have no other TDE replacements. That more or less ended the discussion. That is why I included the full list in my first post starting this thread:
> KWord: Word Processing
> KSpread: Spreadsheets
> KPresenter: Slide Presentations
> Karbon14: Scalable Graphics Drawing
> KPlato: Project Management
> Kexi: Database Creator
> Kugar: Database Report Generator
> KChart: Chart and Graph Creator
> Kivio: Flowchart and Diagram Editing
> Chalk: Painting and Image Editing
> KFormula: Formula Editor
> There are arguments for replacing KOffice with OO/LO, or at least stripping KOffice of those apps and repackaging the remainder as individual packages. I'm unconvinced we should rapidly embrace such an approach. As I mentioned, I have not used KWord but I am researching the app and hope to find time to start some serious testing. As a tech writer for almost three decades I think I am qualified to judge KWord. :)
> I think we need caution about discarding KOffice. A common statement made by several thus far is few are using the KOffice apps to formulate a qualified option what to do.  We need to hear from those who do.
> Perhaps several of us can do just that --- test one or two apps in a meaningful manner and provide a report to the team. I mean meaningful testing, not cursory baloney as seen in so many online "reviews."
> If you are an experiencd spreadsheet number cruncher person then spend a few days evaluating various aspects of KSpread. If you having drawing talent then evaluate Chalk (a.k.a. Krita) and Karbon14. If you are a local PowerPoint guru then evaluate KPresenter. Somebody should evaluate KPlato. For example, would KPlato help a person with building a home?
> Any evaluation should not be how these apps compare to MS Office, but are they palatable for most people for many tasks? Don't look for missing escoteric features. Forget about importing and exporting MS Office files. Focus on usability by typical users with common needs.
> I have a feeling KOffice might surprise us all, me included.
> With that said, I am not against supporting OO/LO as long as that focus is tight integration with TDE. I hate the OO/LO file picker dialogs. They are useless compared to KDialog. Menu and toolbar look-and-feel needs help. Tim was working on some of that a while ago but I don't what happened. I think Tim told the LO people the TDE team would maintain the hooks needed for TDE integration.
> Perhaps after R14 we can have a serious discussion about the future of KOffice. Yet I don't think any such discussion will be valid unless we perform some serious testing and evaluations.
> Certainly not an R14 topic of concern but perhaps R15.

Unfortunately having at least basic support for MS Office documents should be considered. As I said, I don't think it should be a main concern, but certainly considered in the future. There are people, myself included, who cannot afford MS software, yet many of us require support for MS Office format for our jobs and/or education, but can't always stay at work or school long enough to finish these. Sure, it's easy to convert to RTF for home use, but what if the boss expects it to be emailed using MS Office format? Just something to consider.

I just installed and opened KOffice. I like the menu idea (as in, the templates menu that shows when a KOffice app is opened). I definitely think this idea should be discussed as far as improvements are concerned, and that more templates should be included.

I haven't yet confirmed the ODF issue, but that definitely needs looked at to see if it needs updating.

I will definitely spend more time in KOffice. Even if it does use an old version of ODF, I'm sure OOo/LO will still open it. I'll see if I can come up with more pros and cons for KOffice.

Kristopher Gamrat
Ark Linux webmaster