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KOffice Notes

At the KDE 4.0 Release Event last week, Inge Wallin presented KOffice 2.0, a major forthcoming upgrade to the suite that leverages numerous KDE 4 technologies.

KOffice is the broadest office suite available today, with 11 components at present. It includes project management, vector and raster graphics programs, desktop database, word processor, slideshow and spreadsheet tools, and a handful of others. New components including a mind map tool are also being added.

KOffice adopted ODF even before supported it, and OpenDocument Format has since become KOffice’s native file format.

One of KDE 4.0’s biggest additions is the ability to run on Mac OS X and Windows, as well as Linux. Thus, KOffice 2.0 will be available on Linux, Mac and Windows when it’s released. (Alphas are already available for testing users now.)

Some other cool features coming with KOffice 2.0 include:

  • Integrated into KDE; can be embedded in Konqueror browser.
  • Each application is scriptable. The codebase is modular, allow for extensions to be built as complementary pieces to the core KOffice code.
  • Sophisticated color management supports CMYK color space, and mixing colors in different color spaces (not for 2.0, but soon afterward).
  • Like other KDE 4 applications, KOffice 2.0 offers more features with a smaller footprint in terms of system resources needed.

It’s great to see the explosion of ODF-capable suites hitting the marketplace. Soon, users will be able to choose between, KOffice, and IBM Lotus Symphony on any one of the big three OS platforms. All of these suites have strong feature sets, and all are free of cost or open source.

These new contenders are going to bring major changes to a market that has been stagnant far too long!

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