Published on September 12, 2007
IBM will be making initial code contributions that it has been developing as part of its Lotus Notes product, including accessibility enhancements, and will be making ongoing contributions to the feature richness and code quality of OpenOffice.org. Besides working with the community on the free productivity suite's software, IBM will also leverage OpenOffice.org technology in its products.
This is great news for the tens of millions of users of OpenOffice.org and the thousands of individual members of the project, said John McCreesh, OpenOffice.org Marketing Project Lead.
"We welcome IBM's contributions to further enhancing the OpenOffice.org product. But equally important is IBM's future commitment to package and distribute new works that leverage OpenOffice.org technology supporting the ISO ODF standard. ODF is a once in a generation opportunity for the IT industry to unify round a standard, and deliver lasting benefit to users of desktop technology."
Others involved in the project or distributing the code were equally enthusiastic about IBM's step.
Mark Shuttleworth, founder of Ubuntu, the Linux distribution, said, "We are excited about IBM joining Sun and other contributors to the OpenOffice.org community in pushing development of OpenOffice.org and the OpenDocument Format. We are firmly committed to help set, drive and promote open standards like the ODF world-wide to free all users from any dependency on single vendors and proprietary software. The OpenOffice.org community is showing that it is possible for large, competing companies to collaborate and deliver extraordinary value to all of their users." OpenOffice.org is distributed with Ubuntu.
OpenOffice.org is the leading open-source productivity suite. It includes word processing, spreadsheet, presentation, drawing, database, and other modules; it uses the ODF as its native file format as well as fully supporting other common file formats (including Microsoft Office). The software runs on all major platforms, including Windows, Vista, Linux, Solaris, Mac OS X, and is available in over 100 languages. OpenOffice.org is fully interoperable with other popular suites and may be used free of charge for any purpose, private or commercial; the license is LGPL.
Since the project's creation by Sun Microsystems in 2000, nearly 100 million have downloaded the product; thousands contribute to it. As an international team of volunteer and sponsored contributors, the OpenOffice.org community has created what is widely regarded as the most important open-source project in the world today. The OpenOffice.org community acknowledges generous sponsorship from a number of companies, including Sun Microsystems, the founder and primary contributor.