Friday, April 13, 2012

Calligra 2.4 Released - Now What?

As the avid readers of Planet KDE and the Dot can hardly have missed, Calligra made its first real release this week. This release has been long in coming - we started the Calligra project almost one and a half years ago, which is a long time for free software. But the release made the wait worth it: Two new applications, a completely rewritten text layout engine that doesn't prevent showing of any feature in ODF, improved filters, etc, etc. Not bad...

And most important of all: This release is the foundation of the things to come. We took a long time to get it out because we wanted the foundation to be strong enough so that we can build a sky scraper on top of it. From now on we will release new versions every 4 months and make the process more incremental.

We will do this by adopting a stricter policy for committing into the master branch so that in principle it stays releasable all the time. The basic rules will most likely look like this. Allowed into master are:
  • single commit bug fixes
  • merges from feature branches or single commit features
To sum up the status of Calligra right now you can say that we have a really strong foundation (meaning we can load/render/save most of ODF) but a weaker user interface. In other words, the engine can handle many things that are not yet possible for the user to manipulate using our UI.

So that brings us to the question in the title: Which features are most important to implement in the UI at this point? Also, which bugs are the most irritating for you? Let us know through bugs and wishes at ! You can find all the Calligra applications as calligrasomething where something is the name of the application.

You can of course also write comments to this blog entry but it is not guaranteed that the team will read them.

One thing that we already know will be part of 2.5 is improved manipulation of text tables since boemann, the Calligra Words maintainer, blogged about it. Of course I have my own pet list of things to improve but that's not the point of this post so I won't list it here.



Blogger teho said...

Altough not really related to GUI one thing that I'd love to see is collaborative editing through telepathy that would be compatible with LibreOffice in the future. On the other hand that would definetly bring some new challenges to UI desing.. :p

10:37 AM  
Blogger Silver said...

I'd like to see Calligra Sheets being 100% compatible with MS Excel and LibreOffice spreadsheets. Currently many functions are buggy and usability is weird in some places too.
I currently dare not write any collaborative (read: most) documents with Calligra, but viewing with Calligra is very fast. So I see these compatibility issues a lot.

1:39 PM  
Blogger KAMiKAZOW said...

Honest question: how could the suite have been released with even application icons missing? It's not like the oxygen team is occupied with many other icons these days.....

2:41 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

One "killer feature" I'd love to see:

Braindump with handwriting recognition in the Active version!

But that requires more than "just" office features...

5:52 PM  
Blogger ingwa said...

@teho: That is a huge feature. It will probably happen but not for some time yet.

@Silver: There are still some functions missing and there is a Google Summer of Code project to bring OpenFormula compliance to level 4, which means full compatibility with Excel. If you know functions which are buggy we would love to hear about it. Did you register any bugs?

@KAMIKAZOV: Simply lack of manpower. We are trying to fix this for 2.4.x and 2.5.

@Unknown: Another rather big feature request but not as huge as collaborative editing. Will take some time to arrive, I'm afraid

8:33 AM  

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