OpenOffice revolutionaries release stable product

The revolutionaries who have sought to free OpenOffice from the tyranny of King Larry Ellison’s Oracle have released their first stable version.

The Document Foundation launched a stable version of its open source LibreOffice 3.3 productivity suite.

LibreOffice was created because Open Sauce types on the OpenOffice project had no confidence in Larry Ellison to keep it free and open.

So far the product is doing well. It is set for inclusion in the next Ubuntu and OpenSUSE Linux releases.

We have been running the beta for a while. It is a bit lighter than OpenOffice and has several different features. But mostly it has nothing to do with Oracle.

Office suites are much of a muchness. They have been going for nearly 20 years and while they have added new features, they remain largely unchanged.

LibreOffice 3.3 is still not yet ready to support mobile platforms but this is rumoured to be on the way.

Most of LibreOffice 3.3 appears to be about cleaning up the code and integrating new infrastructure to make the project sustainable and independent of Oracle.

However, that is not to say that the new software has nothing interesting under the bonnet.

There are new custom properties handling, new fonts, document protection, increasing the number of allowed rows in a Calc spreadsheet to one million and an easier-to-use print interface.

There is the ability to work with SVG and Microsoft Works files and an easier way to format and number text blocks in Writer, and improved sheet and cell management in Calc. There is the ability to import PDFs, a slide-show presenter console and an improved report builder.

Generally OpenOffice users will be hard pressed to spot the difference and that is probably a good thing.