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New Marketshare Numbers

February 14th, 2010 Benjamin Horst

In recent discussions of marketshare, two key facts stand out. The first is that OOo’s marketshare is much higher than most observers expected, and the second is that Microsoft Office’s marketshare is much lower than common knowledge has long dictated.

The current discussion of market share was first touched off by, which published “International OpenOffice Market Shares” about a week ago. In this article, author Thomas Hümmer was able to determine approximate installed base / market share of and other competing office suites and broke down the numbers by country. Leading countries include Poland and the Czech Republic at 22%, Germany at 21%, France at 19% and Italy, Spain and Denmark close behind.

Hümmer points out some contributing factors to these high numbers, including the fact that many of their public administrations have adopted ODF or for their own use. He also notes the correlation between high adoption of OOo and Firefox, which itself has nearly 50% market share in both Poland and Germany, an increase from several years ago, when Firefox was in the same range as OOo is today. OOo’s continued growth thus seems very likely to follow a similar trajectory.

And what of the low marketshare numbers posted by MS Office? For years, common knowledge has been that “everyone has Microsoft Office” installed, which, to give it a number, one might translate to 95%. However, Webmasterpro found no country with greater than 88% penetration for MSO, while most were much lower (the USA only posted 75% installation of MSO, in fact). Germany and Poland were even lower, at 72% and 68%, respectively.

More discussion of this interesting new information can be found at Computerworld UK, in “Has the Irresistible Rise of Begun?” by Glyn Moody, at OStatic’s “ by the Numbers” by Joe Brockmeier, and in many other recent articles.

Bob Sutor on ODF Support in WordPress

February 5th, 2010 Benjamin Horst

ODF support in more applications is always a good thing. It provides further utility to users, expands and strengthens the software ecosystem, and demonstrates the superiority of open data formats.

Along these lines, Bob Sutor asks, “What would ODF support for WordPress look like?

“Thinking of WordPress as a content management system, importing an ODF file means taking a word processing, presentation, or spreadsheet document and putting into a form that can be saved and displayed by WordPress, either in a blog post or a standalone page. For simple text, this would mean translating to HTML. Doing a bit more work, it could mean using HTML and CSS for formatting. Getting even fancier, it could incorporate extra JavaScript or PHP code to handle spreadsheets in a live manner.”

He points out a Drupal module serving a similar purpose, and collects some good comments from Rob Weir and Walt Hucks helping to further develop the idea.

Denmark to Adopt ODF

January 30th, 2010 Benjamin Horst

Danish project members pointed out the Danish Parliament’s decision this week to require government data be stored in open formats. They developed a list which explicitly included ODF and excluded MSOOXML.

The original article can be found at: ODF Wins the Document Format War (via Google Translate).

It’s also covered in English at The Register (Danes Ditch Microsoft, Take ODF Road – At Last) and OSOR.EU (DK: Danish state administrations to use ODF).

The Register: “Parliamentary parties decided – after four years of deliberation – to use the Open Document Format in all Danish state office documents.”

OSOR.EU points out:

“The open standard ODF is recognised by many European member states. Next to Denmark it is also a national standard for public administrations in Belgium, Germany, France, Lithuania, Sweden and the Netherlands. ODF is recommended by Norway and it is one of the document standards at NATO.

“ODF is a document standard supported by many office applications, including most open source office software packages. The list of software companies supporting ODF include Sun Microsystems with its StarOffice, Google with Google Docs, IBM with Lotus Domino and Workplace. Microsoft supports ODF in the second edition of its 2007 version of its Office suite. Earlier versions require a plugin made by Sun Microsystems. ODF support is also included in the office suite Hangul, used by many of Korea’s public administrations and the office suite Itchitaro, which is popular in Japan. Open source applications that can handle ODF include OpenOffice, K-Office, Abiword, Gnumeric, Scribus and TextEdit.”

January 24th, 2010 Benjamin Horst

Wishler is our new social wishlist sharing service. Using a bookmarklet, Wishler users can add items from any online store to their wishlists, and share them with friends. Our current site is a beta and we plan to continue adding features and improving the interface with community feedback, so please let me know what you think of the site:


Firefox Surpasses IE in Germany, ODF Wins in Slovakia

December 13th, 2009 Benjamin Horst

According to recent reports, the usage share of Firefox, at 45.6%, has surpassed IE (at 44.4%) for the first time, in Germany. “Other” browsers have also reached a record high of 9.5%. See Heise Online for the full story.

Meanwhile, ODF has been selected by Slovakia as its government’s standard data format. Boycott Novell reports this and other news in ODF Wins in Slovakia, Maybe More Countries.


November 22nd, 2009 Benjamin Horst

My team recently created a demonstration site to promote Six Apart’s new Motion platform and provide a space for community members and fans to share with each other at Share

The site is ideal to quickly post questions, links, and images and to embed videos and spark conversations within the community.

Still to come is custom design work and an ongoing promotional campaign to introduce the site to the broader community of and open source fans. Adoption in Munster and Denmark

October 24th, 2009 Benjamin Horst

Add to the catalog of European governments and agencies adopting two more:

eGov Monitor announces that Germany’s city of Munster has chosen to standardize on OpenOffice for its school IT in German City Münster Launches Pilot Project For its Schools To Adopt Open Source Software:

At the moment, teachers are trying out OpenOffice in two schools. The suite will be made available to all schools in November 2009. “We plan to make OpenOffice the default office application for schools”, said Citeq’s spokesperson Stefan Schoenfelder.

The second note comes from community member Leif Lodahl of the Danish localization project, who writes:

We are experiencing a very important breakthrough in
the municipalities right now.

City of Gribskov has been using OpenOffice for a few years.

City of Tønder has been using OpenOffice in schools for about a year.

City of Lyngby-Taarbæk has decided to use OpenOffice in schools.
According to the local newspaper this is only the first step towards a
compete change from MS to OpenOffice in the administration as well

Even the Mayor is happy 😉

Another city close to Copenhagen is about to implement a new version of a
Case- and Document Handling System, that integrates OpenOffice into it. From
then, more than 90% of new documents will be produced with OpenOffice.
Expected to be implemented beginning of November this year. (I will talk
about this case at OOoCon this year).

Thanks for the update, Leif! Turns 9

October 14th, 2009 Benjamin Horst

Right about now, is celebrating its ninth birthday. (Catch for the birthday cake logo before it’s gone!)

The project and the software have achieved much in nine years. Highlights to date include helping launch the OpenDocument Format, creating a complex application that supports all the main computer platforms, distributing hundreds of millions of copies, building a userbase of possibly one hundred million users, and saving governments, businesses, students and home users hundreds of millions of dollars collectively in software licensing fees.

Here’s to the next nine!

Linux Beacon on Writer

September 28th, 2009 Benjamin Horst

Linux Beacon publishes Getting the Most Out of Writer, providing a number of tips for users of OpenOffice Writer.

Linux Beacon (formerly known as No Thick Manuals) is a wiki that offers a growing collection of quality hands-on articles and tips to the best open source applications for Linux.

With great detail, the article covers a wide range of tasks in Writer. Very advanced topics, such as “Creating conditional content using sections” and “Inserting data from a data source into a Writer document,” are discussed alongside simpler tasks that will benefit newer users.

Another interesting article on Linux Beacon focuses on creating ODFs, titled “Create ODF documents without”

While you can create and save documents in the OpenDocument format using, KWord, or AbiWord, there are other ways to generate ODF files. odtwriter, for example, can help you to quickly convert plain text files formatted using reStructured Text markup into odt ( Writer-compatible ODF) documents.

Firefox Surpasses One Billion Downloads

August 4th, 2009 Benjamin Horst

Firefox’s rampant success continues to increase. Lately, it has passed the threshold of one billion downloads, launching a special website to commemorate the milestone:

We’re awed and amazed…

…to be celebrating one billion Firefox downloads. That’s one billion times in the last five years that you and the rest of the Mozilla community have made the choice to make the Web better.

But it’s not just about Firefox. We are the world. We are the billions. We are the ones who make the Web a better place to be. As we all start towards the second billion, let’s take a moment to reflect on the wonders of the Web that you’ve helped nurture and grow.

The impact of Firefox on keeping the web open and competitive has been enormous, and would be difficult to overstate. It is the dominant factor in that success, and its continued health and growth is a pillar of the free and open culture that has given the world such a unique and amazing tool in the web itself.