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NewsFactor: The OpenOffice Experiment

Oct 29, 2002, 20:30 (27 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Lisa Gill)

"OpenOffice 1.0, a freeware application released two years ago as an alternative to Microsoft Office, sounds like a software dream on the surface. It offers free office productivity tools that can operate on a multitude of platforms, compatibility with a range of file formats, and the ability to alter the program as developers worldwide--or on-site--release new code. No license hassles, no forced upgrades.

"In sharp contrast, Microsoft's new licensing structure has won it few fans. Although the August deadline has passed for companies to sign up with the licensing program--which basically leases software to companies for a monthly fee and promises ongoing security updates and upgrades--the desire for alternatives persists, according to analysts.

"Although OpenOffice's appeal may grow as Microsoft's licensing rules change and its customers threaten to abandon ship, the transition remains costly and time-consuming..."

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