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North by South Interviews Claudio Filho of BrOffice

Claudio Filho started and leads, the project to translate and distribute in the Brazilian market. ( is the official Brazilian community of, which had to choose a different name because the trademark for “OpenOffice” in Brazil was already held by another company.)

Last fall (August, 2008), North by South interviewed Filho about the BrOffice project. Already one of the largest native language communities, it has also seen great success with wide government and popular support across the country.

One of the motivations is, of course, cost efficiency in economic development:

It becomes absurd when we compare it with practical matters, like how much this means in soy or oranges, products that generates jobs, income and currency to the country. To have an idea., 1 copy of (M$) Office costs the equivalent to 2 tons of soy, or worse, to 7 tons of oranges, approximately. However, these products generates how many jobs?! And how many families are fed with these jobs?! At this first analyzes we see that solutions like are fundamental to Brazil.

Beyond this, the BrOffice project works toward other important goals that will improve the development of Brazil. Filho predicts that further investment in BrOffice will quickly:

increase the product development, generate jobs inside the community, establishment and expansion of knowledge (know-how) in the country, not to mention things like fighting digital exclusion and evasion of foreign exchange in the country.

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