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From Kay Schenk <>
Subject Re: AOO -> LO or MS O
Date Thu, 03 Sep 2015 16:33:03 GMT

On 09/03/2015 07:22 AM, Louis Suárez-Potts wrote:
>> On 03 Sep 15, at 09:54, Rich Bowen <> wrote:
>> On 09/03/2015 08:33 AM, Fernando Cassia wrote:
>>> "After LibreOffice came out, Oracle released one version of
>>> Oracle Open Office before deciding that the project wasn’t worth
>>> the effort 
>>> <>.
It laid off the programmers and gave the code and trademarks to the Apache
>>> Software Foundation, under Apache’s liberal open source
>>> license."
>>> That's one version of events. Another version of events is this. 
>>> "Shuttleworth has a fairly serious disagreement with how the 
>>> split came about. He said that Sun
>>> made a $100 million "gift" to the community when it opened up the
>>> OpenOffice code. But a "radical faction" made the lives of the
>>> OpenOffice developers "hell" by refusing to contribute code under
>>> the Sun agreement. That eventually led to the split, but
>>> furthermore led Oracle to finally decide to stop OpenOffice 
>>> development and lay off 100 employees."
>>> That's different from "deciding it was not worth the effort".
>>> Why the FUD on a dev list, anyway?
>> It's not FUD. It's a link to an article.
>> What would be awesome is if someone would write a counterpoint,
>> which is non-confrontational, non-rageful, non-hateful, and
>> non-reactionary, but just calmly presenting the reasons why someone
>> might want to stay on OpenOffice.
> Write to the Guardian? I would do it, would love to do it, and clear
> up issues. But I’m one of the *last* people who could do it, as I was
> so involved in the project, from its inception to … now.

I would think this would make you one of the best people to do it!

> Besides, Mark S is not entirely bending history. There was a
> contingent, led by a very talented developer formerly employed by
> Novell and still associated with LibreOffice, who *did* make the
> lives of the Sun/Hamburg devs—or at least their boss, who was also
> mine—at times unpleasant. And one of the bones of contention was
> Sun’s widely criticised copyright assignment policy, which it did
> modify over the years. But that policy did have real consequences,
> despite Sun’s choosing to deprecate them. Whether the IP policy is
> the primary cause of the ultimate split—that would be a
> simplification and evaluating it would take more words than would
> stun an ox, if printed. But the policy did little to warm the hearts
> and soothe the nerves of those who felt that for all the license
> asserted, OOo tested the limits of what constituted open source
> development. (In contrast, AOO really is open source de jure and de
> facto.)
> The history of the radical faction, btw is scripted online and
> accessible via the Internet Archives, if one wishes to look for
> Go-ooo and the blog entries of the primary developer working on
> Go-ooo.
>> Refuting the article on this list, where we all already know the
>> story, is a good start, but if you could turn it into an article
>> that's less political, more practical (features, community,
>> timelines, and so on), that would actually help our cause. The
>> person asking the original question doesn't care about politics,
>> hurt feelings, and "radical factions", I guarantee. They want to
>> know which product is better for them, now, and in the long term.
> Your last point is the interesting one. These ancient corporate
> battles and community disputations have left a torn legacy that has
> done exactly what any competitor of OOo would want: Divide and
> Conquer. The user is left uncertain. If I were counselling any user,
> would I point to AOO for its… what? support of users? UI? Templates?
> updates? Please. We’ve sputtered on about an incremental release now
> for over a year and meanwhile, LO is at 5.0.1, which I just
> downloaded. Numbers are arbitrary tokens, they mean little, we all
> know. But they look great.
> Louis
>> Thanks.
>> -- Rich Bowen - - @rbowen
>> - @apachecon
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