Re: GUADEC Results
- From: Kenneth Christiansen <kenneth gnu org>
- To: Sam TH <sam uchicago edu>
- Cc: <gnome-office-list mail gnome org>, <trow gnu org>, <james daa com au>
- Subject: Re: GUADEC Results
- Date: Tue, 10 Apr 2001 14:38:13 +0200 (CEST)
You might want to consider making MrProject a part also.
On Tue, 10 Apr 2001, Sam TH wrote:
GUADEC was fun. GNOME Office is now real. It would be nice to
release a whole suite for GNOME 2.0. This will be lots of work. So
Much longer version:
GUADEC 2, masterfully orcestrated by our Scandanvian compatriots, was
a huge success for GNOME overall, and for GNOME Office in particular.
First, lots of people were able to meet face to face for the first
time, and lots of GNOME office developers were able to attend,
including developers from AbiWord, Gnumeric, Guppi and Dia.
Two talks were given on GNOME Office by Jody Goldberg of Gnumeric and
Dom Lachowicz of AbiWord. The first was a BOF where lots of good
discussion happened between all the different GNOME office developers,
and others in the community. We developed a very long list of things
that we need to work on, some of which I will mention later. The
second was a user-level presentation demonstrating some of the cool
features of GNOME Office. Guppi's ability to spin pie charts in real
time was spontatneously applauded. Much gratitude is due Dom and Jody
for the excellent presentations.
>From these dicussions, we came up with a large number of points that
need both discussion and work. Here are some of them.
Sadly, politics has been a problem for GNOME Office almost since the
beginning. However, since the only people at GUADEC interested in
GNOME Office development were the folks working on the previously
mentioned apps, we decided to damn the torpedoes and work with the
excellent apps we have, and make them even better and more
What is in GNOME Office?
The following applications are clearly within the domain of an
office suite as the market is currently defined (by Microsoft and
its customers) and have expressed the desire to be part of GNOME
- Gnumeric [ spreadsheet ]
- AbiWord [ word processor ]
- Guppi [ charting and graphing ]
- Dia [ diagramming ]
GnuCash, I am told, has expressed the active desire _not_ to be
considered part of GNOME Office.
Other potential candidates for inclusion are  :
- Sodipodi [ vector drawing ]
- Evolution [ mail client ]
- EOG [ image viewing ]
- Toutdoux [ project management ]
- Gimp [ drawing ]
- Gfax [ faxing ]
- GNOME-DB [ database connectivity ]
- Galeon [ web browsing ]
Of these, Gfax and Galeon equivalents are not usually included in
other office suites. The major component we are missing is a
presentation program, which I will discuss later.
Fundamentally, the most important criteria for inclusion is if the
developers want to be included, and to this end the developers of
these programs should be contacted. Hopefully, components of GNOME
office will also work well together, and integrate both technically
We came out of GUADEC with a number of goals, some quite vague, and
some quite specific. Here are a few:
- Release GNOME Office 1.0 with GNOME 2.0. This means by Dec 31,
- Integrate with the other GNOME Office applications better. This
means using technologies like Bonobo.
- Share more code.
- Have a more similar look and feel. For example, have icons on the
toolbars in the same order.
Some of these goals, such as the last, are quite easy. Some, like
Bonobo integration, are quite a lot of work. But all of them will
improve GNOME Office significantly.
- Release Plans
The plan to release 1.0 by the end of the year is quite ambitous,
since we have never released a previous version. However, it seems
achiveable, and would greatly improve the visibility and the
usability of GNOME Office.
In order to accomplish this task, we need to do a number of things:
- Decide what we want to do
- Set a schedule
- Hack like crazy
Here's the current status of the 4 apps I mentioned at the
AbiWord is maturing rapidly, and will soon be heading into feature
freeze for version 1.0. There is high probability that 1.0 will be
released before GNOME 1.0 would be released. However, AbiWord 1.0
is likely not to be based on the GNOME 2 platform, neccessitating
further work for integration before GNOME Office 1.0
The Gnumeric maintainer, Jody Goldberg, has committed to releasing
verison 1.0, with Bonobo support, before the end of the year.
Guppi already supports being embedded as a Bonobo control. It is at
version 0.35.3. Further status unknown by me. Jon?
Dia is at version 0.86. Further status unknown.
For release plans, it would be nice to know in the resonanably near
future the answer to the question "What is in GNOME Office?".
However, this may not be possible.
There are two major components to interoperation which will be
Bonobo is the the component technology used by the GNOME platform.
Currently, the only GNOME Office applications that take advantage of
Bonobo are Guppi and Gnumeric, allowing Guppi charts and graphs to
be embedded in Gnumeric spreadsheets. AbiWord plans to develop
support for both embedding Bonobo objects and being used as such an
object in the hopefully near future.
- Code Sharing
Currently, applications in GNOME Office share code in two different
libraries. First, the GAL library contains a number of GTK widgets
used by many GNOME apps. Second, libole2 is used by both Gnumeric
and AbiWord to import MS documents. However, this code sharing
could be extended, both to other applications in GNOME Office, and
to other functions. For example, importing componound documents
from other office suites will require common methods of handling the
different parts of the document.
Obviously, tasks of this magnitude will take work on everyone's
part, and it will take everyone working together. This mailing list
is for precisely that. Hopefully it can be a central communication
method for all GNOME Office developers. Additionally, the IRC
channel #gnome-office has been created on irc.gnome.org.
This is certainly an exciting moment for GNOME Office. But there's
lots of work to do, and we need to work together effectively to get it
all done. Rememeber, hackers are lazy. :-)
 Birds of a Feather session.
 Taken from http://gnome.org/gnome-office/
sam th --- sam uchicago edu --- http://www.abisource.com/~sam/
OpenPGP Key: CABD33FC --- http://samth.dyndns.org/key
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