Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish

Interview with Michael Meeks of OpenOffice.org

Filed under
Interviews
OOo

On the Novell website, there is a page dedicated to the company's Distinguished Engineers. One of these is Michael Meeks, a Cambridge graduate who began his Linux career at GNOME desktop start-up Ximian, and now works as part of Novell's OpenOffice.org team. Daniel James met him just prior to the announcement of the Novell/Microsoft agreement, and opened the interview with his favourite opening question to any free software hacker...

DJ: What was your first computer?

MM: I was encouraged to program by my mother, because she was a Head of Maths, so I had a BBC Micro and was doing simple BASIC programming. Then came the era of type-in games, so you could learn programming syntax. As my typing was not very quick, I had time to consider the constructs. Eventually I was writing assembler, and this led to x86; but all this was with proprietary software, really. Just on top of Windows, or DOS - a little bit of the Novell technologies crept in there, but only briefly. I left school and went to work doing PASCAL programming, on VT420's, VMS on Alpha machines, cross-compiling to 68000 embedded systems, real-time, the lot. Lot's of good stuff there, and quite interesting in many ways.

During my gap year I became a Christian, and at that point I realised my computer was riddled with non-free software, most of it stolen. So we had a big fight about this, me and God, and the voice of conscience was quite clear that this was not what should go on. So eventually, I ditched it to run Linux instead, which at the time was not good news. The hardware support, and anything graphical or visual, was just hopeless.

DJ: So it was a sort of 'forty days in the wilderness'?

Full Story.

More in Tux Machines

openSUSE Leap 15 Will Succeed 42.3

What comes after openSUSE Leap 42.3 for SUSE's community non-rolling distribution? Version 15. Richard Brown announced on the behalf of the openSUSE Board and Leap Release Manager that the next version after openSUSE Leap 42.3 will be openSUSE Leap 15. Yes, that's after pre-42 was openSUSE 13.2. Read more Also: Mailinglist Archive: opensuse-project (15 mails)

Leftovers: Software

  • GNU Guile 2.2.1 released
    We are happy to announce GNU Guile release 2.2.1, the first bug-fix release in the new 2.2 stable release series.
  • Announcing Nylas Mail 2.0 [Ed: just Electron]
  • Cerebro Is An Amazing Open Source OS X Spotlight Alternative For Linux [Ed: also just Electron]
    You may be fed up with traditional way of searching/opening applications on your system. Cerebro is an amazing utility built using Electron and available for Linux, Windows, and Mac. It is open-source and released under MIT license.
  • Flowblade Another Video Editor for Linux? Give It A Try!
    You may have favorite video editor to edit your videos but there is no harm to try something new, its initial release was not that long, with time it made some great improvements. It can be bit hard to master this video editor but if you are not new in this field you can make it easily and will be total worth of time.
  • Get System Info from CLI Using `NeoFetch` Tool in Ubuntu/Linux Mint
  • Ukuu Kernel Manager Utility lets You Upgrade or Install Kernels in Ubuntu/Linux Mint
    There are many ways to upgrade your Linux Kernel using Synaptics, command line and so. The Ukuu utility is the simply solution to manager your Ubuntu/Linux Mint kernels. If you want to test new fixes in the Linux Kernel then you can install Mainline Kernels released by Ubuntu team but mainline Kernels are intended to use for testing purposes only (so be careful).
  • 10 Reasons Why You Should Use Vi/Vim Text Editor in Linux
    While working with Linux systems, there are several areas where you’ll need to use a text editor including programming/scripting, editing configuration/text files, to mention but a few. There are several remarkable text editors you’ll find out there for Linux-based operating systems.
  • OpenShot 2.3 Linux Video Editor New Features
    It’s been quite some time since we last talked about OpenShot, and more specifically when it had its second major release. Recently, the team behind the popular open source video editor has made its third point release available which happens to come with a couple of exciting new features and tools, so here is a quick guide on where to find them and how to use them.
  • Boostnote: Another Great Note Taking App for Developers? Find Out By Yourself
    Boostnote is an open-source note-taking application especially made for programmers and developers, it is build up with Electron framework and cross-platform available for Linux, Windows and Mac. Being programmers, we take lots of notes which includes commands, code snippets, bug information and so on. It all comes in handy when you have organized them all in one place, Boostnote does this job very well. It lets you organize your notes in folders with tags, so you can find anything you are looking for very quickly.
  • Collabora Office 5.3 Released
    Today we released Collabora Office 5.3 and Collabora GovOffice 5.3, which contain great new features and enhancements. They also contains all fixes from the upstream libreoffice-5-3 branch and several backported features.

Virtualization and Containers

GNOME News