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macrumors bot
Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
54,991
17,369


A Sun Blog entry reveals that Sun engineering is joining on ongoing project to port OpenOffice to Mac OS X (native). Currently, a version of OpenOffice runs under X11, but the new project aims to provide a native Aqua interface.

Why is Sun joining the Mac porting project? If you look around at conferences and airport lounges, you will notice that more and more people are using Apple notebooks these days. Apple has a significant market share in the desktop space. We are supporting this port because of the interest and activity of the community wanting this port.
 

mkrishnan

Moderator emeritus
Jan 9, 2004
29,776
12
Grand Rapids, MI, USA
Why bother? What's wrong with NeoOffice?

I think, even ultimately NeoOffice's goal is to someday branch back into OpenOffice.org -- the process that's used right now is inefficient and means that Mac users don't have an Aqua version of the suite at the latest revisions at many times.

Compare this to asking why Firefox 3 needs to be Aqua when we have Camino... I think it's essentially the same argument, although Java adds a layer in the case of Neo.
 

mkrishnan

Moderator emeritus
Jan 9, 2004
29,776
12
Grand Rapids, MI, USA
The other thing pointed out in the talkback to the blog is this:

Right now, Neo is essentially a translation or port. Code comes one way -- the Neo people primarily implement OOo in Aqua with Java. They sometimes also add new innovations. But they're generally working on porting OOo rather than advancing it. What that means is that Mac concerns are not taken as seriously at the planning phases of new versions of OOo. If OS X / Aqua were a primary build of OOo, then Mac people would be involved from the ground up each time new features are being planned, etc, right? That's a good thing... a really good thing.
 

Queso

Suspended
Mar 4, 2006
11,821
7
If Sun are helping, does this mean there will be a supported Mac version of StarOffice at some point in the near future?
 

snakesqzns

macrumors regular
Apr 26, 2007
146
0
I'd like to see them do a total port to obj-c and drop all the java. Overall the whole product needs a feature freeze and a year or two of polishing. OOo is potentially the most bloated and unstable application I've got on my Linux system, so I suppose they've succeeded in cloning MS Office in that sense (at least the Windows version).
 

PlaceofDis

macrumors Core
Jan 6, 2004
19,241
6
good news.

yes there is NeoOffice, but it runs in Java, which i'll admit isnt the best under OS X and tends to make things a bit of a resource hog imo.
 

AtHomeBoy_2000

macrumors 6502a
Feb 3, 2005
879
0
exactly... i don't get it. is openoffice any better? or is it just so popular on the PC front that a lot of people want it on Mac too?

A native OpenOffice would theoretically run faster since NeoOffice runs on Java. NeoOffice is a great stop gap until a native OpenOffice, but OpenOffice NEEDS to be native eventually.
 

mrjk

macrumors newbie
Jun 23, 2003
10
0
NeoOffice does NOT "run in Java"

good news.

yes there is NeoOffice, but it runs in Java, which i'll admit isnt the best under OS X and tends to make things a bit of a resource hog imo.

Please not again. Neo Office does not "run in Java". It uses the Java API somewhat, but even that looks like it is lessening. It runs just as fast as OO 2.1 X on my old 800MHz iMac. I do agree that it would be nice if the Mac were a supported version directly.
 

iMeowbot

macrumors G3
Aug 30, 2003
8,634
0
If Sun are helping, does this mean there will be a supported Mac version of StarOffice at some point in the near future?
They're going to want to get their investment back from those two full time heads somehow, so that's not a bad guess at all.
 

peharri

macrumors 6502a
Dec 22, 2003
744
0
NeoOffice is an unsupported (by OpenOffice.org obviously) fork which generally lags behind the rest of OOo through necessity and, to boot, just never feels quite right despite the attempts to make it a native port.

I for one welcome a supported native Mac version of OpenOffice.org. FWIW, I hope they stick to Cocoa as doing so would presumably make it easier to "back port" to other versions of the OPENSTEP API such as GNUstep.
 

nagromme

macrumors G5
May 2, 2002
12,546
1,196
NeoOffice is great, but only about 90% Mac-like. I wouldn't mind seeing something hit 100%!
 

mozmac

macrumors 6502
Apr 28, 2005
332
15
Austin, TX
I would love to see this happen. Not only will this give Mac users another option for the office suite, but it will help make the product better. As it stands right now, MS Office is a better overall application, but with more users jumping on board everyday, the product will gain more experience and the community of developers will grow.

When it comes time for me to buy a new computer, I will not be forking out money for MS Office. That's the time I'm going to make the switch to OpenOffice. I would like to save that $500 and put it into something more worthwhile. Wow, saying it like that, I can't believe Microsoft can charge that much for basic office software! That's insane! And even worse, everyone pays it! It's like, "Hmmmm...I can buy software to make amazing films and special effects, or...I can buy a word processing program." Give me a break.
 

mixel

macrumors 68000
Jan 12, 2006
1,714
946
Leeds, UK
Neo-office still crawls with multiple docs open for me.. And its not because it's hogging the cpu, it just seems inherently slow performing certain tasks (dual G5 here) ...I love Neo, but anything which makes MS office look fast needs more work, hehe.

A little bit more competition or cooperation.. Doesn't really matter which - will make for better products for us all in the long run. :D

Word files still look weird too frequently in Neo.. I wonder if things are doing any better in OO now?

I think it's great how many word processing apps we can choose from! How anyone could see this as bad I don't understand. More powerful free apps? OH NO!
 

fastred

macrumors member
Feb 23, 2004
37
8
New Zealand
Excellent news!!

This is great news... since in future OpenOffice / NeoOffice will be the only Mac OS X programs that run VB Macros....
 
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