3.3 Released to Deaf Ears

by Susan Linton - Jan. 26, 2011Comments (12)

OpenOffice.orgOne day after the announcement of LibreOffice 3.3, Oracle released the free version of Perhaps it was due to the lack of fanfare, but it seems this release was met with a collective indifference. Smart money would probably bet that the lack of interest was due to the LibreOffice release, which, in contrast, was met with enthusiasm all over the Internet.

No press release, no announcement, hardly any mention at all marked the release of Only those watching noted the occasion. The Website did change their home and news pages to reflect the new version bump, but LibreOffice posted a press release on their mailing list, copied it to their blog, and send out copies to many journalists/writers working in Open Source. The announcement of LibreOffice was mentioned by all the big Websites and a lot of bloggers. Reviews, slideshows, and favorite things on LibreOffice are popping up already. Hardly any Websites, maybe three or four, even mentioned the release of Oracle sure has doused the Sunlight of this once staple of every free desktop.

Regardless of what this will mean for Oracle and their commercial version, the free was released. It did offer some new features that some could argue is already a step or two behind LibreOffice, since LibreOffice included all of's new features besides a whole laundry list of their own. Since LibreOffice is Open Source Software, you can bet all these new features will find their way into next release. But it sets the stage for a pattern of always being that step behind LibreOffice.

Some of the new features of 3.3 include:

* A new option in setting document password protection, can now allow reading while protecting a document from changes.

* Calc spreadsheets now support one million rows, up from the previous 65,536.

* Charts can now be enhanced with drawing objects, like arrows, symbols, and flowcharts.

* Clean-up of the Presentation slide creator, slide type is now chosen from the side from a variety instead of having that many slide layout varieties.

* Quick search box on toolbar with next and previous buttons.

* Several new helpful case options, such as sentence by sentence or just first letter.

* Colored tabs in Calc, ease transitioning between sheets.

* Full list of new features are here. was once a proud accomplishment of Open Source ingenuity, cooperation, organization, and marketing. Today it's but a shadow of its proud heritage. This spirit is continuing over at The Document Foundation though.

Shailesh Patel uses OStatic to support Open Source, ask and answer questions and stay informed. What about you?


You have a link to OpenOffice, but not LibreOffice. Why? Does your automated create link script need updating...

0 Votes

Your words seem a bit biased. I use Open Office, but see no need to update periodically. It is rather nice to miss the fanfare and to be able to concentrate on my tasks, not hype.

0 Votes

LibreOffice code is not likely to be integrated back into, because:

- Oracle requires copyright assignment in order for code to be integrated into

- Some of the code which is being integrated into LibreOffice has been, for whatever reason, refused for integration into at this time

1 Votes

Many people are happily working in both projects. LibreOffice and OpenOffice are developing together and co-operating but giving OpenSource fans and others a choice. Market-forces will probably take it from there.

Since Oracle bought Sun it has been unclear about it's vision for the future of most of those products.

LibreOffice clearly has a lot of work to do in terms of infra-structure, community-structure which are already established at OpenOffice but it is getting there fast. The process is clearly not slowing the developers who are at last allowed to release well-tested patches and developments. Has anyone seen the release announcement of LibreOffice's offering to Cloud aficionados?

Good luck all and regards from

Tom :)

1 Votes

Would be nice if there were as many developers working on Gimp as there are on LibreOffice. We might of had 2.8 out before XMas.

1 Votes

The LibreOffice features will not necessarily find their way into OpenOffice, even though both are open source. OpenOffice requires that you do a copyright assignment on the code, handing over your rights. Your Oracle could for instance, take your GPL code and make it proprietary if they wished, because you're handing over the copyright to that code.

Unless the LibreOffice contributers agree to the copyright assignment, then OpenOffice won't take their code. It is a large reason the fork exists in the first place.

1 Votes

This story is factually incorrect.

OpenOffice 3.3 came out BEFORE LibreOffice 3.3. Oracle's official press release and announcement came out in December of 2010.

0 Votes

Not so Sean. I wasn't speaking of the commercial OpenOffice 3.3, I was speaking of the freely available


Charles Schulz said of the LibreOffice release, "I don’t recall ever had a similar coverage."

1 Votes

I once used a program called openoffice. It was torn away from the community and put under the thumb of a corporate dictator overlord. Luckily the code was liberated, and now resides inside LibreOffice, the real "OPEN" office. Don't be fooled by the fake openoffice presented by ordabacle. It will merely be a broken locked down feature deprived glimpse of what real community open office once was, and will be in LibreOffice. Don't support this kind of greedy non-community type of overrule. If ordabacle can't be a decent host to a great community product, then we should not support them. Bad ordabacle, Bad. Make the switch to LibreOffice now, it's time to build a community.

1 Votes

Libreoffice managed to nag me every 10 secs about missing Java and crash on two docs before I got rid of it. I updated openoffice and everything was OK instead. Were you bought by the TDF+Novell marketing machine?

0 Votes

I can share an anecdote too. I had a friend whose Windows laptop had become unbootable--again--and wanted me to fix it. They had a copy of Microsoft Office 2010, but had misplaced the license key to unlock it. I reinstalled Windows for them (along with a 20 GB Ubuntu partition so they could back up their data as well as keep working when Windows dies on them again in about 6-8 months, but I needed to give them an office suite on the Windows side until they could contact Microsoft for help with the MS Office key. I tried OpenOffice 3.3 (current release candidate at the time), but the install failed partway through time and time again. I downloaded the installed from 3 different browsers on 2 different machines, and each time the install failed partway through. Then I just downloaded LibreOffice 3.3 RC2 one time and had everything set up in short order. To my knowledge, they still haven't activated MS Office 2010. I think they just decided to not to bother with it anymore.

0 Votes

Your Oracle could for instance, take your GPL code and make it proprietary if they wished, because you're handing over the copyright to that code.

Jesus Castillo Culturismo sin Tonterias

0 Votes
Share Your Comments

If you are a member, to have your comment attributed to you. If you are not yet a member, Join OStatic and help the Open Source community by sharing your thoughts, answering user questions and providing reviews and alternatives for projects.

Promote Open Source Knowledge by sharing your thoughts, listing Alternatives and Answering Questions!