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KOffice 1.1beta2 Released

May 22, 2001, 13:10 (3 Talkback[s])


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KOffice Suite Beta Released for Linux

KDE, the Leading Linux Desktop, Ships Beta of KOffice Suite

May 21, 2001 (The INTERNET). The KDE Project today announced the release of KOffice 1.1beta2. KOffice is an integrated office suite for KDE which utilizes open standards for component communication and component embedding. The primary goals of this release, which comes 4 weeks after the release of KOffice 1.1beta1, are to provide a preview of KOffice 1.1 and to involve users who wish to request missing features or report problems. Code development is currently focused on stabilizing KOffice 1.1, scheduled for final release this summer.

This release includes the following components:

  • KWord (a frame-based, full-featured word processor);
  • KPresenter (a presentation application);
  • KSpread (a spreadsheet application);
  • KIllustrator (a vector-drawing application);
  • Krayon (a bitmap image editor);
  • Kivio (a flowchart application);
  • KChart (a chart drawing application);
  • KFormula (a formula editor);
  • Kugar (a tool for generating business quality reports); and
  • filters (for importing/exporting documents).

While the entire release is designated as a beta release, individual components are all at various stages of development, which is indicated next to each component's description below. Changes to individual KOffice components are also enumerated below. In addition, a list of changes and a FAQ about KOffice are available at the KOffice website.

KOffice and all its components are available for free under Open Source licenses from the KDE server and its mirrors. As a result of the dedicated efforts of hundreds of translators, KOffice 1.1beta2 is available in 26> languages.

KOffice Components

KOffice is an integrated office suite consisting of numerous components which can interact, share data and embed each other using KDE's open KParts and DCOP technologies.

A new overall feature in 1.1beta2 is the autosave feature, which allows users to have an automatic backup copy regularly updated, in case of an unlikely crash.

The 1.1beta2 release includes the following components:

  1. KWord (alpha). KWord is a frame-based word-processing and desktop publishing application. KWord's features include:
    • paragraph settings (alignment, spacings, indentations, numbering, etc.);
    • a stylist to edit, add, remove and update paragraph styles (including a number of provided ones);
    • frame orientation;
    • multiple columns per page;
    • tables;
    • image and other document embedding;
    • in-place formula editing;
    • headers and footers;
    • chapter numbering;
    • document statistics;
    • auto-generation of table of contents;
    • variables;
    • spell checking; and
    • templates.

    Since KOffice-1.0, KWord has been completely redesigned, and is based on a new formatting engine (Qt RichText).
    Changes since the last release (beta1) include:
    • Copying frames has been implemented, fixing headers and footers.
    • Implemented tabulators (left/right/center/decimal aligned).
    • Implemented floating framesets, mainly for inline formulas and tables.
    • KWord can now be embedded into another KOffice application.
    • More precise coordinate system (especially for frames).
    • Many improvements for tables (including splitting and merging cells).
    • Highlight mispelled word during spell-checking, and spell-check all framesets.
    • UI improvements including a complete redesign of the menus, undo/redo fixes, font-size fix, border-drawing improved, etc.
    • Fixed crash when embedding into Konqueror.
    • Many new variables available.
    • Redesigned style editor (stylist), now all in one dialog.
    • When changing a style, only the changes are applied to existing paragraphs (not the whole style).
    • Fixed drawing and printing of embedded objects.
    • Respect user's color scheme.
    • Improved visual appearance (page shape, with shadow).

  2. KPresenter (beta). KPresenter is a presentation application which features:
    • inserting all kinds of graphic objects;
    • inserting and editing rich text (with lists, indentations, spacings, colors, fonts, ...);
    • inserting autoforms;
    • inserting pictures and clipart;
    • embedding other KOffice parts;
    • setting many object properties (background, many types of gradients, pen, shadow, rotation, object specific settings, ....;
    • working with objects (resizing, moving, lowering, raising, ...);
    • grouping/ungrouping objects;
    • headers/footers;
    • advanced undo/redo;
    • setting background (color, gradients, pictures, cliparts, etc.);
    • assigning effects for animating objects and defining effects for changing slides;
    • playing screen presentations with effects;
    • print as PostScript;
    • creating HTML slideshows with a few mouse clicks;
    • using and creating templates;
    • using XML as document format; and
    • a Presentations Structure Viewer.

    Changes since the last release include:
    • Pages can now be renamed (independently from their title text object)
    • New templates added
    • Fixed AutoForm loading bug
    • Speedup for loading and saving + smaller file size

  3. A HREF="http://www.koffice.org/kspread/">KSpread (beta). KSpread is a full featured spreadsheet program. It can work as a traditional table-oriented sheet but also supports complex mathematical formulas and statistics. In addition, KSpread supports displaying data graphically, scripting using a restricted (for security purposes) language and templates.

    Changes since the last release include:
    • Copy can now export plain text.
    • Builtin visual support (based on the old kformula lib) removed, the kformula part can be used instead.
    • Fixed drawing of embedded kspread document.

  4. KIllustrator (alpha). KIllustrator is the vector drawing program for KOffice. The aim of the KIllustrator project is the development of a freely available vector-based drawing application similiar to Corel Draw or Adobe Illustrator.

    Changes since the last release include improved speed and usability.
    • Helplines can be dragged.
    • Mouse cursor flickering fixed.
    • Fixes for readonly mode (e.g. embedded in konqueror).
    • UI improvements.

  5. Krayon (beta). Krayon (f/k/a KImageShop) is an effort to make a professional level bitmap image painting and editing component of the KOffice project.

    Krayon is being released with KOffice for the first time.

  6. Kivio (stable). Kivio is a flowcharting program which offers more than basic flowcharting abilities. Objects are scriptable, and a backend plugin system will offer the ability to make objects do just about anything. Feed it a directory of C++ header files, or even Java files, and let it generate a graphical class map for you. Give it a network and let it explore and map out the network for you. All this is possible through the scripting/plugin architecture Kivio will possess. The scripting language chosen is Python, though knowledge of Python or programming is not required to use Kivio. Kivio's features include:
    • Multiple paper size support. All standard paper sizes are supported (letter, A4, etc...), and you have the ability to create your own.
    • Dynamically loadable stencils. Stencils support various attributes such as border width, foreground color and fill style (gradient, solid, pattern, pixmap, arrow heads and text).
    • Multiple pages per document to allow you to organize your document according to your own needs.
    • Grouping. Select any stencils you want, and group them into a single element for easier manipulation.
    • Full clipboard support (cut/copy/paste/duplicate).
    • Clipboard history. Paste previously copied stencils!
    • Layer support. Stencils can be layed out on different layers for easier organization. Stencils also default to specific layers. For example, if you are laying out a floorplan, furniture goes on one layer, while walls and structural shapes go on another, and wiring on yet another.
    • KParts support, which allows placing a Kivio document in a KWord document or inserting a KSpread spreadsheet into Kivio for diagramming.
    • Customizable helper lines for easy alignment.
    • Subselections. Some stencils are made up of numerous small shapes; with subselections you can change it.
    • Python scripting. Scripting allows not only the programming of the stencils, but also Kivio. Scripting can be used to add new interface elements or visualization tools.
    • C++ Plugin interface.
    • Customizable user interface. If you do not like the layout of the screen by default, drag the various elements around until you are satisfied. Some elements even allow you to change their colors for a more pleasing look.
    • Dynamically resizing grid. As you zoom in further and further on a document, the grid will constantly refine itself to allow you to place your stencils with more precision.
    • Stencil builder. The stencil builder permits you to create your own stencils without doing any programming.

    Changes since the last release include:
    • UI improvements.
    • Connector bug fixed.

  7. KChart (alpha). KChart is an embeddable chart drawing application. Features include:
    • Simple wizard-based chart creation.
    • Support for bar charts, line charts, pie charts, hi-lo charts and area charts
    • Seamless integration into KSpread.

  8. KFormula (beta). KFormula is a formula editor which provides easy-to-use input facilities. Some of its most exciting features are:
    • Easy Greek letter insertion.
    • Intelligent cursor movement.
    • Advanced syntax highlighting.
    • Multi-level undo support.
    • LaTeX export (copy and paste into a text editor).

    Since KOffice-1.0, KFormula has been completely redesigned and much improved.

  9. Kugar (stable). Kugar is a tool for generating business quality reports. Besides the standalone report viewer, Kugar is available as a KPart report viewer. This means that any KDE application can embed the report viewing functionality and that reports can be viewed using the Konqueror browser. Kugar works by merging application generated data with a template to produce the final report. Both the data and the template are specified using XML. This approach means that applications only need worry about generating the data itself. A template can be referenced via a URL which allows businesses to create a centrally managed template library. Kugar templates include the following features:
    • Report headers and footers.
    • Page headers and footers including page numbers and current date and time.
    • Calculations of counts, sums, averages, variance and standard deviation.
    • Number formatting based on value.
    • Currency and date formatting.
    • Full control of fonts, colors, text alignment and wrapping.
    • Line drawing in multiple styles.

    Kugar is being released with KOffice for the first time.

  10. Filters. Various import/export filters are available in most of the KOffice applications to support document exchange with users of other office suits. For more information on KOffice filter status, including import filters for MS WinWord 97 and MS Excel 97, please visit the KOffice filters status page.

    Changes since the last release include:
    • New filter: Quattro Pro import filter for KSpread
    • Improvements to the MS WinWord and MS Excel import filters (less crashes, more features)
    • Improvements to the HTML and Abiword export filters

Downloading and Compiling KOffice

The source packages for KOffice 1.1beta2 are available for free download at http://ftp.kde.org/unstable/koffice-1.1-beta2/src/ or in the equivalent directory at one of the many KDE ftp server mirrors. KOffice 1.1beta2 requires qt-x11-2.2.4 or greater, which is available from Trolltech at ftp://ftp.trolltech.com/qt/source/ under the name qt-x11-2.2.4.tar.gz, although qt-x11-2.3.0 is recommended, as well as kdesupport-2.1.x, kdelibs 2.1.2 (kdelibs 2.1.x will work but will cause some crashes and anti-aliased font problems), which are available from the KDE ftp servers at http://ftp.kde.org/stable/2.1.1/distribution/ and http://ftp.kde.org/stable/2.1.2/distribution/ (see also the KDE 2.1.1 press release and the KDE 2.1.2 press release for more information). KOffice 1.1beta2 will not work with versions of Qt older than 2.2.4 or versions of kdelibs older than 2.1.x.

For further instructions on compiling and installing KOffice, please consult the installation instructions.

Installing Binary Packages

Some distributors choose to provide binary packages of KOffice for certain versions of their distribution. Some of these binary packages for KOffice 1.1beta2 will be available for free download under http://ftp.kde.org/unstable/koffice-1.1-beta2/ or under the equivalent directory at one of the many KDE ftp server mirrors. Please note that the KDE team is not responsible for these packages as they are provided by third parties -- typically, but not always, the distributor of the relevant distribution (if you cannot find a binary package for your distribution, please read the KDE Binary Package Policy).

KOffice 1.1beta2 requires qt-2.2.4 or greater, which is available from Trolltech at ftp://ftp.trolltech.com/qt/source/ under the name qt-x11-2.2.4.tar.gz, although qt-2.3.0 is recommended, as well as kdesupport-2.1.x, kdelibs 2.1.2 (kdelibs 2.1.x will work but will cause some crashes and anti-aliased font problems) and kdebase-2.1.x, which are available from the KDE ftp servers at http://ftp.kde.org/stable/2.1.1/distribution/ and http://ftp.kde.org/stable/2.1.2/distribution/ (see also the KDE 2.1.1 press release and the KDE 2.1.2 press release for more information). KOffice 1.1beta2 will not work with versions of Qt older than 2.2.4 or versions of kdelibs older than 2.1.x.

At the time of this release, pre-compiled packages are available for:

Please check the servers periodically for pre-compiled packages for other distributions. More binary packages will become available over the coming days and weeks.

About KOffice/KDE

KOffice is part of the KDE project. KDE is an independent, collaborative project by hundreds of developers worldwide to create a sophisticated, customizable and stable desktop environment employing a component-based, network-transparent architecture. KDE is working proof of the power of the Open Source "Bazaar-style" software development model to create first-rate technologies on par with and superior to even the most complex commercial software.

For more information about KDE, please visit KDE's web site. For more information about KOffice, please visit KOffice's web site where you can find, among other things, information on contributing to KOffice.

Corporate KOffice Sponsors

Besides the valuable and excellent efforts by the KOffice developers themselves, significant support for KOffice development has been provided by theKompany.com, which has contributed Kivo and Kugar to KOffice, and MandrakeSoft, which sponsors KOffice developers David Faure and Laurent Montel. Thanks!

Trademarks Notices. KDE, K Desktop Environment, KChart, KFormula, KIllustrator, KOffice, KPresenter, Krayon, KSpread and KWord are trademarks of KDE e.V. Kivio, Kugar and Rekall are trademarks of thekompany.com. Adobe Illustrator is a registered trademark of Adobe Systems Incorporated. Corel Draw is a registered trademark of Corel Corporation or Corel Corporation Limited. MS WinWord 97 and MS Excel are registered trademarks of Microsoft Corporation. Linux is a registered trademark of Linus Torvalds. Unix is a registered trademark of The Open Group. Trolltech and Qt are trademarks of Trolltech AS. All other trademarks and copyrights referred to in this announcement are the property of their respective owners.

Press Contacts:
United States: Kurt Granroth
(1) 480 732 1752
Europe (French and English): David Faure
(44) 1225 837409
Europe (English and German): Martin Konold
(49) 179 2252249