The Italian military is transitioning to LibreOffice and the Open Document Format (ODF). The Ministry of Defense will over the next year-and-a-half install this suite of office productivity tools on some 150,000 PC workstations - making it Europe’s second largest LibreOffice implementation. The switch was announced on 15 September by the LibreItalia Association.
The migration project will begin in October and is foreseen to be completed at the end of 2016.
The deployment of LibreOffice will be jointly managed by the two organisations, announces LibreItalia. The NGO will help the ministry to ready trainers in different parts of the military, and the Ministry is to develop a series of online courses to help with the switch to LibreOffice. The material is to be made public using a Creative Commons licence.
An agreement between the Ministry and LibreItalia was signed on 15 September in Rome, by Ruggiero Di Biase, Rear Admiral and General Manager of the Italian Ministry of Defence Information Systems and Sonia Montegiove, President of Associazione LibreItalia.
The UK government on 7 September published recommendations and guidelines on the use and implementation of ODF, the Open Document Format. The compendium is authoritative, from its general introduction to the recommendations on procurement, a guide on integration of ODF with enterprise software, software that allows collaborating on documents and a review of ODF’s change tracking features.
I woke up this morning babe, and the Internet was storming, inside of me. And when I get that feeling I know I need some LibreOffice testing. Yes. What happened was, I opened the browser, like, and I was, like, there's a new, like, LibreOffice, like, and it's a whole-number version. Yay.
In all seriousness, LibreOffice 5.0 got me really excited. Yes, I know, it was an almost arbitrary increment of a minor version to a major one, much like Mozilla did with Firefox a few years back. Still, I totally liked the previous version, and for the first time in many years, it showed real, actual potential of being a viable alternative to payware solutions. Let's see in which direction this latest edition carries the good news and all that hope.
Ever since the LibreOffice open-source office suite was forked from the Oracle OpenOffice suite in 2010, its community of developers has been working to improve it. The latest evolution of LibreOffice, version 5.0.1, came out Aug. 27 and provides users with new features and improved performance. LibreOffice bundles multiple components as part of the suite, including the Writer Document, Calc Spreadsheet, Impress Presentation, Draw, Math Formula and Base Database applications. Being able to import and export in multiple formats has always been an important element of LibreOffice's interoperability capabilities. In LibreOffice 5.0.1, Writer now has improved Apple Pages document import capabilities. For PDF export, the ability to time-stamp a document is now enabled. Manipulating images is now improved across the suite, with the ability to crop an image with a mouse. The Calc spreadsheet now benefits from improved formula handling as well as new conditional formatting capabilities. LibreOffice is typically available as the default office suite in many Linux distributions and is also freely available for Apple Mac OS X and Microsoft Windows applications. Here, eWEEK takes a look at key features of LibreOffice 5.0.1.
OpenOffice was the first big, mainstream free software competitor to Microsoft Office, and because of that, it still has mainstream name recognition—which is a problem.
Developers have almost all moved to LibreOffice, the spiritual successor to OpenOffice. But OpenOffice continues to be operated as its own project, seeing little development and only drawing potential LibreOffice users to a defunct piece of software.
Indeed, Microsoft's marketing team published a press release recently saying Office 365 is about 80% cheaper compared to the open source office suite, OpenOffice - with the figures stemming from reports in Italy and the City Council of Pesaro. The Redmond giant claims that to roll out Open Office, Pesaro incurred a one off cost of about €300,000 and had lots of problems with document formatting.
But equally how would you convince a public sector organisation to migrate to your cloud services instead of using 'expensive' open source software?
The obvious way would be to present a case study from a similar organisation together with a well written report commissioned to an "independent" consultancy firm. At this point your future customer has all the data and justifications required to sign on the dotted line.
And some journalists are now presenting this case as fact of Microsoft Office 365 being 80% more economical than open source alternatives.
I would argue that this is an isolated case and the PR efforts by big technology vendors, like many other methods, are being used to trick private and public organisations into signing contracts based on data or claims that may be not completely true.