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OpenOffice.org 3.0 officially out, site swamped by fans

By   |  October 13, 2008

The OpenOffice.org website was swamped today, shortly after the organisation announced the release of version 3.0 of its open source source office suite. The OpenOffice.org website returned multiple timeout errors early this afternoon as the site was presumably innundated by expectant downloaders.

Today’s release was the official announcement of the new office suite version, although most of the major mirrors have had the latest version since Saturday evening.

Version 3.0 of OpenOffice.org introduces a number of new features as well as a lot more polish for existing features. Some of the major changes that could make OpenOffice.org a growing threat to Microsoft’s Office domination include support for working with Office 2007 files, proper support for Mac OSX, and a vastly improved spreadsheet application.

With Version 3.0, OpenOffice.org is now able to run on Mac OS X without the need for X11. For the first time OpenOffice.org behaves like any other Aqua application. This is a significant step forward for Mac users that have been left out of the OpenOffice.org loop until now.

OpenOffice.org 3.0 also already supports version 1.2 of the ISO standard OpenDocument Format (ODF) which includes powerful new features. This is important as OpenOffice.org capitalises on its international recognition by ISO while Microsoft’s OOXML format is still mired in controversy. ODF is also quickly being adopted by governments around the world including South Africa, Brazil, Belgium, Malaysia and, most recently, Venezuela.

Compatibility

Compatibility has always been the biggest hurdle for any challenger to Microsoft’s Office suite. With version 3.0 OpenOffice.org includes read and write support for Microsoft Office formats including .doc, .xls and .ppt. But, perhaps more significant, is OpenOffice.org 3.0’s ability to open Office 2007 documents in the newer .docx, .xlsx and .pptx format that really promises to make it competitive. Until recently there was no out-of-the-box support for these newer formats, forcing users to switch back to Microsoft Office to work with these types of files.

OpenOffice.org 3.0 also introduces spreadsheet collaboration with this release. With this feature users can manage multiple users on one spreadsheet, prevent data conflicts and spreadsheet owners can easily merge all changes.

Also on the spreadsheet front, OpenOffice.org 3.0 now also supports 1024-column spreadsheets. Previously the spreadsheet applications could only support 256 columns and users most often requested this be extended.

OpenOffice.org 3.0 also includes a number of interface improvements, including multi-page previews, a significantly improved notes feature and a new launch page.

Comments

11 Responses to “OpenOffice.org 3.0 officially out, site swamped by fans”

  1. OpenOffice 3 « Connect the Tweets
    October 13th, 2008 @ 3:44 pm

    […] of several alternatives to Microsofts dominance in the space, OpenOffice brings with it: “Version 3.0 of OpenOffice.org introduces a number of new features as well as a lot more […]

  2. Mac
    October 13th, 2008 @ 4:37 pm

    local mirror: http://mirror.ac.za

    hope we’ll get ‘buntu builds soon. incl for 8.04

  3. OpenOffice 3 is officially released! : northxsouth : free software news from latin america
    October 13th, 2008 @ 5:07 pm

    […] as people all over the world download the latest release — you can experience it yourself or read about it on Tectonic. OpenOffice 3 represents a major leap forward for the open source office suite and makes its […]

  4. RGA
    October 13th, 2008 @ 6:10 pm

    There is no version available for people running PPC based Macs. Running a PPC based Mac these days really make one feel like a second rate citizen, despite many machines not being all that old. PPC users don’t get much love from Apple these days and now we are not getting much love from the OSS community either.

  5. Alastair
    October 13th, 2008 @ 6:39 pm

    @RGA:
    Exactly. I have a PPC-based Mac that I barely use these days because just when I find a cool piece of software I find it doesn’t run on my machine …

  6. Tectonic » OpenOffice site still struggling - get it locally
    October 14th, 2008 @ 9:35 am

    […] regularly times out. The site started to falter yesterday afternoon, shortly after the organisation announced the release of version 3.0. This morning the site, occasionally, manages to display a simple notice that […]

  7. Tectonic » Install OpenOffice.org 3.0 on Ubuntu Linux
    October 14th, 2008 @ 12:29 pm

    […] Unless you’ve been in an isolation chamber, you’ve probably noticed that OpenOffice.org 3.0 was released yesterday. It’s been a while in the coming and now the latest version of our favourite, and most […]

  8. Tectonic » Three million OpenOffice.org 3 downloads
    October 23rd, 2008 @ 5:28 pm

    […] OpenOffice.org 3.0 officially out Share this post: […]

  9. Stiri - Lumea Open Source în săptămâna 13 - 19 octombrie 2008
    October 24th, 2008 @ 1:27 pm

    […] 3.0 este lansarea săptămânii, site-ul fiind aproape blocat de utilizatorii dornici să-l încerce cât mai repede. Iată, aici pe Linux.com, găsiţi ceva […]

  10. Tectonic » Sun releases StarOffice 9
    November 17th, 2008 @ 3:09 pm

    […] “3650”, “http://www.tectonic.co.za/wordpress”); Close on the heels of the release of OpenOffice.org 3.0, Sun Microsystems today announced StarOffice 9, its own version of the popular open source office […]

  11. tectonic.co.za : Sun releases StarOffice 9 | Rich on Linux and FOSS!
    November 19th, 2008 @ 4:15 pm

    […] on the heels of the release of OpenOffice.org 3.0, Sun Microsystems today announced StarOffice 9, its own version of the popular open source office […]

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