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IBM Software Linux

IBM Joins Community 213

Petrushka writes "In a press release today, with accompanying press FAQ, IBM announces a change in its relationship to the development community. The upshot is that they're making a long-term commitment to OOo; no organization has paid off any other organization for this; they're devoting about 35 of their developers in China to OOo; and they'll be contributing accessibility code from Lotus Notes to improve current support for assistive technologies. You may recall that an alleged shortage of assistive technologies that work with OOo has been one of the big criticisms leveled against the idea of governments standardizing on the OpenDocument format, which is a file format that OOo and several other office suites support."
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IBM Joins Community

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  • by morgan_greywolf ( 835522 ) on Monday September 10, 2007 @08:39AM (#20537073) Homepage Journal itself doesn't lack assistive technologies. OOo on Windows lacks assistive technologies. OOo with GNOME or KDE integration gets the accessibility technologies of GNOME or KDE, respectively.

    Still, it's a welcome sight to see IBM participating in OOo development. OOo just keeps improving with every new release, and I find that I use it more than Microsoft Office, although I have both installed at work and at home.

  • WTF? (Score:5, Informative)

    by spectrokid ( 660550 ) on Monday September 10, 2007 @08:46AM (#20537133) Homepage
    IBM has its own office package: rtsuite/ []
    Is this another case of the one division not knowing what the other does, or is IBM giong to drop smartsuite?
  • Re:faster!!! (Score:3, Informative)

    by morgan_greywolf ( 835522 ) on Monday September 10, 2007 @08:49AM (#20537157) Homepage Journal

    It is terribly slow. Looks like a huge piece of bloat. It will be great if it can be faster.
    When was the last time you used OOo? Since 2.0, it's not that slow. It's slow in initial loading, but that's because OOo loads the whole suite when starting any of its components, so comparing load time of OOo Writer vs. Word, for example, is not an apples-to-oranges comparison.

    Once OOo is loaded, though, it responds very quickly on any fairly decent hardware -- at least like a 1.5 Ghz processor and have a gig of RAM depending on OS.
  • Re:Good lord.. (Score:5, Informative)

    by Otter ( 3800 ) on Monday September 10, 2007 @08:52AM (#20537175) Journal
    For those fortunate enough not to know what I'm talking about: see the last entry on this page [].
  • Re:faster!!! (Score:5, Informative)

    by Corporate Troll ( 537873 ) on Monday September 10, 2007 @09:05AM (#20537295) Homepage Journal
    You're misinformed... has a few Java components (notabily in Base, I think) but it is not a Java application. You don't even need a JRE to run it.
  • by swillden ( 191260 ) * <> on Monday September 10, 2007 @09:40AM (#20537623) Homepage Journal

    It's also worth pointing out here that the upcoming version of IBM's Lotus Notes product includes internal support for ODF documents (.odt, .ods and .odp). Based on what I see in the beta, it looks to me like the ODF support is provided by an embedded and tweaked version of OOo, but I think it's still worth adding Lotus Notes to the list of apps that support ODF.

    Notes 8 is built on the Eclipse RCP, BTW, and runs nicely on Linux (which is my platform of choice) as well as Windows and OS X. I imagine it can run just about anywhere Java does. To be honest, I don't think the new version is hugely better than previous versions, and I've never been a big fan of Notes, but for Linux users whose companies use Notes it's really nice to have a native client rather than mucking about with Notes under WINE, or running a Windows OS on another box or in a VM. As an OOo user, it's also very nice to know that I'll soon be able to send ODF documents to my colleagues secure in the knowledge that they can read them.

    Disclaimer: I work for IBM, but I'm not a spokesman for IBM. IBM is happy about that state of affairs, and so am I.

  • MS Word is worse. (Score:4, Informative)

    by DrYak ( 748999 ) on Monday September 10, 2007 @10:04AM (#20537977) Homepage

    I would bet that this is why it is always accused of being slower thet MS Word

    MS Office actually load its whole suit in memory, *at boot time*.

    But there's a taskbar widget for that can do the same stuff if you want to get the same startup speed and you don't mind wasting a lot of RAM.
  • Re:Good lord.. (Score:5, Informative)

    by hachete ( 473378 ) on Monday September 10, 2007 @10:26AM (#20538299) Homepage Journal
    I've used and programmed Lotus Notes on and off for the past 10 years. It's not that bad for what it does. For a networked environment the database replication was way ahead of it's time, and it still has no real competitor in that field. OK, so the field has moved on; and the interface is shit. Still, admin wise it's pretty good, and IBM has done a lot of good work with Notes.

    We've rolled out a wiki in the same breath as running a huge Notes infrastructure. What I don't understand is that, as crap as the Notes interface is, it's still way ahead of any browser for editing documents. Anyway, so the Notes database is the back-end, and the web-browser is the new client. Call it a wiki, and people love it. Call it Notes database and they'll run a mile. I suppose it must say something about the whole thing.
  • Re:Good lord.. (Score:3, Informative)

    by file terminator ( 985503 ) on Monday September 10, 2007 @11:01AM (#20538913)
    I'm not defending Lotus Notes in general, but in this particular case you're wrong. I had to work extensively with Lotus Notes many years ago, and the reason for the hieroglyphs was NOT to confuse shoulder surfers, as you seem to believe.

    It used to take quite a while to authenticate when using a modem (you know, the 56kbps stuff and earlier). The hieroglyphs were there as a visual clue that you had entered your password correctly, BEFORE you even attempted to authenticate. The same password always produced the same hieroglyphs. If you recognized the set of hieroglyphs, it was likely that you punched in your password correctly, and that you'd authenticate successfully.

    To forestall the inevitable "So shoulder surfers could deduct your password from looking at the hieroglyphs? BRILLIANT!" response, it should also be mentioned that lots of password strings produced the same set of hieroglyphs. An attacker would still need to perform a dictionary attack, even if he knew "your" set. (I have no idea if there were extra safeguards in place that reacted quicker if someone tried to brute-force a password with various strings that produced the same hieroglyphs as the correct one, but it would seem prudent.)

    All in all, while not Lotus Notes' best "feature," and perhaps of dubious usefulness (especially today, when bandwidth is measured in Mbps, not kbps), it certainly wasn't its worst. It still tends to amuse me when, in spite of the many quirks Lotus Notes had/has that you constantly ran into, people pick the password dialog to complain about. (Especially when they get it wrong. The purpose of the hieroglyphs may even have been explained in the Lotus Notes Help, although it is too long ago that I can say with certainty.)
  • Re:faster!!! (Score:1, Informative)

    by y86 ( 111726 ) on Monday September 10, 2007 @01:50PM (#20541793)


    The minimum JDK/JRE version required to use features that require java is JDK/JRE version 1.3.1.

    To use the XSLT filters with JDK 1.3.1 you should download the files xalan.jar and xml-apis.jar from Xalan website and crimson.jar from the Crimson website. The files also need to be added to the classpath. This can be accomplished with Tools->options->>Security

    For full functionality, jdk/jre 1.4.0_02 or newer or jdk/jre 1.4.1_01 or newer is required
    For accessibility
    All platforms

            * Java runtime environment 1.4.0_02 / 1.4.1_01 or newer
            * Java Access Bridge - to get the Java Access Bridge, visit


            * Installation of GNOME 2.2


    Installation of GNOME 2.0

    From ........... yeah, you need Java. Java Components or Java core is irrelevant -- any time you fire up a Java anything you needs tons of Mem and CPU. Watch perfmon or top.
  • Re:faster!!! (Score:3, Informative)

    by Checkmait ( 1062974 ) <{moc.erawerahp} {ta} {noryb}> on Monday September 10, 2007 @05:22PM (#20545015)

    yeah, you need Java
    Did you read the quote you pasted in carefully?

    The minimum JDK/JRE version required to use features that require java is JDK/JRE version 1.3.1.
    For full functionality, jdk/jre 1.4.0_02 or newer or jdk/jre 1.4.1_01 or newer is required
    Certain features you might or might not want require Java but it is fully possible to install (compile) and run the rest of the office suite without Java. I'm sure because I compiled it just a few months ago without Java on my system (although at this point I have installed Java).

Houston, Tranquillity Base here. The Eagle has landed. -- Neil Armstrong