The Continuing Rise of

The technology landscape shifted again yesterday, with another announcement between Sun and IBM – IBM has joined the community. Bluntly put, with only one (rather unlikely) exception, there is no more credible enterprise partner for than IBM. This is a big accomplishment for both teams – congratulations, folks.

At the risk of repetition… why are we (both) interested? Do we really believe the growing OpenOffice population will have an impact on the world’s datacenters (where both of us make our living)? Obviously, yes.

The technology choices consumers make are already having a profound impact on how business runs. As an example, with 70% of the US economy driven by consumer spending (among the highest in the world) – when consumers spend, they are increasingly spending via the network. Using the devices, software and services they’ve chosen. Do I expect them to buy a datacenter through OpenOffice? No.

The choices consumers make, given their numbers on the web (here and around the world – in population centers, of course) are driving standards, from time-based video to applications and document standards. The technology industry is no longer the sole driving force – consumers are increasingly in charge. In the developed and developing world.

So our theory is simple. Free software, like free search or video, appeals to the broadest segment of the world’s population – free is a universally attractive price tag (and a critically important intellectual property philosophy). One need only look to the recent successes behind the global rise of the ISO Standardized Open Document Format – appealing because of its price tag ($0), its complete freedom from tricky royalty, patent or technology obligations, and the ubiquity of products that support it (like OpenOffice, Google Apps, and others).

So what’s driving OpenOffice adoption? Sun’s endorsement? IBM’s involvement? Google’s support? Ubuntu’s popularity? Its global community is enormously important, for sure.

But let me put it this way. I was with the CEO of a very popular internet software company recently, who said she felt it necessary to get her company’s core product download to under 5 megabytes. I asked why- at more than ten times that size, OpenOffice downloads seemed in no danger of slowing globally, even to places with poor network infrastructure. Her response?

“My download doesn’t save a customer $400.” There you have it.

So get OpenOffice here, and tell your friends – if they’d like Microsoft Office compatible office productivity software, at home or at work or at school, they can get it.


In all the right senses of that word.


Filed under General

58 responses to “The Continuing Rise of

  1. You guys need to market OO.o to the big corporations out there a bit more.
    Most still don’t believe they have a choice beyond MSO.
    Good going, would love to see OO.o increase market share in the time to come.

  2. Stefan Zimmermann

    Thank you, Jonathan that’s a good one. And because you like the numbers … at $400 savings to the customer for each download of … what’s it now ? Way beyond 100 million downloaded copies already ? Do the math, not talking about additional savings a customer may find out when he really need to get support. There are countries in this world who would be happy having that number as their gross national product.

  3. Niall

    Excellent 🙂

  4. mick

    This posting has a few HTML tagging errors. – see the title for starters.
    Also, the links behind the OpenOffice IBM logos/images don’t work.

  5. anagogue

    Aside from what IBM is bringing to the table, any news on built-in compatibility with MS Office 2007?
    That is the real kicker, right now (I haven’t checked in a couple of months, mind you).

  6. This move should not be surprising. OpenOffice makes it possible for millions of people to do their work free from Microsoft’s lock in. If you think IBM hates Sun, that’s nothing compared to how much they hate Microsoft.

  7. dm

    for various reasons (mathml and math typing, swriter preferences, etc.) for me OOo is a much better choice over MS Office; btw even if it was not completely free. I’m just more productive in OOo env.

  8. Stallman is likely to be pissed-off about the phrase "intellectual property philosophy" being linked to
    And when you say, "I was with the CEO of a very popular internet software company recently", only salacious thoughts fill my mind. 🙂

  9. Anonymous

    Correction to my earlier comment:-
    **Drive mass scale openoffice adoption in universities and schools

  10. Gil

    According to yahoo finance IBM has 43B in debt and 10B in cash, is there a reason Big Blue is turning into Mr Softie, I think Sun is in the drivers seat here. Excellent news on Solaris 10 and PostgreSQL should have a positive impact on Sun’s bottom line.

  11. cut the ponytail

    You know, I sure hear a lot about how Sun gives things away free. Great for a consumer, not good for the stock price. At least until they shed the bleeding money microelectronics division and become a software/systems company. Then Sun may have a fighting chance against the big boys.
    Well, good news is coming. I hear the stock price is going to quadruple in a couple of months. 🙂

  12. BR

    Add a Data Analysis option under Tools with all the statistical goodies – that would be the end of Excel for me.

  13. Dr Math

    Dear BR
    Open up starCalc
    Go under the "Insert" Tab & look for functions (Statistical .etc..) you will find what you need.

  14. Anonymous

    Run a BETTER officeTM-OpenOffice. Information, by it’s very nature, wants to be free-(paraphrased from Mark Pesce, one of the original co-creators of VRML and a big open source activist. You can check out some of his stuff at his site I’d like to know about a rumor I heard about Sun moving more towards storage. That and what do you think about Bit Torrent, Jonathan? It seems extremely useful for transferring large files. That, and the story on the front page of the Technology section of Today’s New York Times, which coincidentally is about IBM, seems very interesting. The story can be found here: . This seems to hold out some very cool possibilities, like enabling every human to have their own personal copy of the world wide web, yes, all of it, sitting in their bedroom, or underneath their desk. This has some shades of the old project INDRA which floated around the Web circa 93-94. I imagine having a Sun workstation, someday, at home, that indexes the entire world wide web. Now, that’s power(to the people, no less). (insert big wide permagrin here) *Mark

  15. My thoughts on openoffice and what it needs to make it successful.
    <a href=""&gt; Google and Openoffice </a>

  16. chris

    true life exchange:
    On 9/10/07, Chris wrote:
    Funny how Sun has renamed their stock ticker to Java and their stock price is about the same as a grande latte at Starbucks. Has a nice symmetry don’t you think?
    On 9/11/07, Sam wrote:
    if only java had the same memory reallocation as a grande latte….

  17. lmf

    It would help OOo a lot if you would add a spreadsheet. The closest thing you’ve got right now is Calc, which is obviously a joke. Go ahead, steal some code from Gnumeric, at least then you’d have features like text to columns and the ability to open text files in a spreadsheet. You know, common sense, basic features that are present in any other spreadsheet.
    OOo will NEVER make it into businesses without a real spreadsheet. You should be ashamed to even put Sun’s name on Calc.

  18. Good stuff, but you really should start working to endorse OO.o yourself.
    Instead of delivering StarOffice which is supposedly a highly polished derivate of OO.o you should instead attempt at distributing OO.o along with Solaris.
    Given the fact that OO.o is free and gives MS Office the jitters, who would want to spend money on StarOffice?
    Also, OO.o and StarOffice, are both quite heavy, SUN should do something to lighten them up? Maybe fix the Java code to become more efficient.

  19. RamaRao Ayyagari

    I donot have the bandwidth available at home to download solaris 10 for my laptop. Will it be possible for SUN to sell the bundled solaris in a box like common linux distros?

  20. I like your logic:
    – our theory is simple. Free software, like free search or video, appeals to the broadest segment of the world’s population
    – Free/Open Software => More Customers => More Network /Datacenter Usage => More Sun Success (I own Sun stock 😉
    But I recently ran into "the dark side of Sun", while trying out Sun Global Desktop (SGD/Tarantella). Its a great piece of software (like other Sun technology) but has been shackled by weird and expensive licensing. Free SGD could really make Thin Clients and web-based desktop apps or SaaS very appealing and making it open source will ignite some trully innovative ideas/implementations.
    Right now, it is almost hidden literally "behind the sun" while Citrix and Webex are making waves. It almost appears to be only used by Sun Rays, while it could potentially be used in a wide range of web-based apps – how about Web-enabled Open Office using Sun Global Desktop – doesnt matter if the server is on Solaris, Linux or Windows. Especially with the local disk access, it could be a true Browser-based Desktop.
    Sun Global Desktop (SGD) is by far the best alternative to Citrix and Windows Remote Desktop. But its potential is unnecessarily being wasted due to weird and expensive licensing and also closed implementation.
    More comments –

  21. Peter

    One great feature I like about OO Calc is the ability to selectively delete large portions of a spreadsheet without deleting all the formula.
    I recently downloaded the Open Office Software development Kit, along with the plugin for Netbeans, can’t wait to sink my teeth into this and make the MS Office junkies jaws hit the floor in our org.
    My advice, if your still using MS Office and you haven’t tried Open Office yet, do so and take the time to learn it. If you don’t, your companies data will be locked into obsolete, expensive software and I’m not talking about the purchase price.

  22. Pavel Janík

    Please spell the name of project correctly. You used the wrong form 6 times again 😦

  23. Or why not just get ride of the ".org" in the project name? Nobody says it, and maybe 5% of the people write it.

  24. RBurt

    Testing. I’ve tried to write a comment three times and it keeps kicking back.

  25. Gil

    The Microsoft partnership should have a net positive effect on Sun Hardware sales and Service in the x86 sector. Wouldn’t this be a peachy time to pick up MySQL and get the Database service along side it. Na, wishful thinking. Out, Gil

  26. BR

    Dr Math – I am aware about the stat functions – but what is desperate missing are the Data Analysis tools: F-Test, Fourier Analysis, different t-Tests and Regressions

  27. A CEO that hand-crafts his own HTML. You rock, Jonathan.
    I’m a big OO user, partly because I have to be for my job, but I liked it even before this job. My wife, however, runs into frustrations because her grad school not only insists on MS DOC (and now DOCX) format, but some of her profs even insist that she create her docs using Microsoft’s product.

  28. Charles Soto

    I recently had to re-install Windows Vista on my iMac (yup, don’t ask). My previous installation had MS Office 2007. With the exception of Outlook 2007, it is almost entirely unusable for me. I’m a huge fan of Office 2003 and Office 2004 Mac. This "upgrade" is not for me. I can’t find anything, the interface is too heavy and bloated, and it offers nothing I need that 2003 offered. But instead of "downgrading," I "sidegraded" to StarOffice 8 (through Google Pack, no less. Except for Outlook, I don’t really miss anything (granted, I primarily use Entourage on my MBP for email).
    But I agree with some above posters. I think IBM and the rest of the OOo supporters need to put on a PR campaign at large corporate and university sites and spearhead adoption plans for this to be successful. It’s just TOO EASY for everyone to just do what everyone else is doing…

  29. Hub

    anagogue: as for Office 2007 compatibility, Sun and Novell are working together to work on the Office OpenXML filters for

  30. Saha Da

    So Sun became OEM for Microsoft.. Did Microsoft became Sun’s preferred OS partner? is it reciprocal? think not!!

  31. Anonymous

    Schwartz’s last blog:
    "The rise of open-source…"
    Schwartz’s current blog:
    "The continuing rise of OpenOffice…"
    That’s a lot of rising. Someday, open-source should be featured in a Viagra commercial.

  32. Matthew Martin

    Hi Jonathan,
    I know this is off-topic, but wanted to send along my $0.02 about some product areas in which I think Sun could be really successful.
    It seems to me that with Solaris and ZFS Sun might be able to just walk in and take over the market for network attached storage represented by products such as the ones seen here: Seems like if you made your existing technology into "appliances", hiding the complexity, grabbing this market would be like selling color televisions into a previously black and white only market.
    Also please take a look at what is going on with Check Point firewall appliances. This is the world’s best selling firewall. Most of Check Point firewalls have been sold on Nokia appliances, which have always had a very fast network stack, excellent user interface, complete router feature set, and good support for WAN cards. The problem with the Nokia boxes is that they cannot handle multiprocessing well with their current OS (IPSO), and they are scrambling to address this. The other big player for Check Point firewall appliances is commodity hardware running Check Point’s own version of Linux "Secure Platform. This OS is weak in all the areas that IPSO is strong, but it does multiprocessing well. This is key because Check Point is now beginning to market multi-purpose security systems with firewall + IDS/IPS + Anti-virus + Anti-spam + URL filtering, etc.; all on a single host. These boxes really need good multiprocessing capability. It seems to me that a box with the new Niagara should be able to produce higher throughput on one of these integrated security platforms than anything else in out there, and Check Point already runs on SPARC. Again, it seems like this is a marketplace that should be Sun’s for the taking.
    Best of luck,

  33. you represent maryland well at $un computer. take a look at dis, java : {}

  34. The joining on of IBM is a step forward. I’ve been using OpenOffice for may years and have seen it evolve. Are you planning on announcing any new features in collaboration with IBM?
    Personal Injury Attorneys

  35. Joe Bob

    What the !$@>%#!? Jonathan, we need a post from you on this Microsoft partnership. Please explain the implications of this deal, or I may become an ex-Sun shareholder. YiKES!

  36. This is offtopic SUNW/JAVA numerology, but here is a timely announcement:
    Sun’s stock price, on this date September 12, for five years running,
    has witnessed strictly increasing prices on each anniversary
    (measured at the close of the most recent business day) == to wit:
    2002 3.22
    2003 3.92
    2004 4.03
    2005 4.10
    2006 5.19
    2007 5.66
    which now stands at 176% of it’s price five years ago. This is better performance
    than the venerable S&P 500, whose index is only 166% of its Sept. 12, 2002 price.
    With choppy historical values, this is a rather rare event, whereby Sun’s
    financial planets happen to be aligned. E.g. tomorrow the series will be
    only monotonically non-decreasing, and in a few days there will occur
    an annual regression where the prices are not monotonic. Take that,
    stock price worrywarts …

  37. Slightly off-topic, but as I had commented before (on the IBM-Solaris entry), I’d like to highlight the fact that Sun under your stewardship has appeared a lot more business focussed and has been winning more partners than ever before. And this is not just my opinion. Quite a few people in the blogosphere think so too –
    Keep the good work going.

  38. thorsten

    Thank you Jonathan for an informative and thought provoking blog. Thought provoking not only through what you said but similarly through what you omitted. While I am happy that Big Blue supports, hopefully contributing to making it a better product then it already is (I use it on a daily basis), it also shows the commitment of IBM to ODF which in my eyes is far more important. It is very interesting to notice that this is one of the few times where it is equally important to a lot of end users as to providers of IT integration systems to establish a credible alternative to the Microsoft software stack as with their new OOXML format they really try to push themselves up the food chain. As you are certainly aware of but some of the readers of this blog might not know the only available implementation of OOXML exhibits a strange behaviour when it comes to representing numbers in the XML document making it at least difficult to parse these other then with an "approved" application, which kind of contradicts the spirit of XML (for an example, enter 12345.12345 into Excel2007 and see how it is represented in the XML-file).
    Well, we will see how this works out in the end, meanwhile keep up the good work and all the best to you and employee No. 1 who in my opinion has really got Sun back on track regarding the mass hardware market.

  39. just me

    Jonathan, talk to us about the new Sun-MS partnership!

  40. Anonymous

    This is all good. But Sun has many products/projects/people that are
    unprofitable. It takes courage to weed these out. Unless bold steps
    are taken to eliminate these, the Sun stock will not do well. It is
    easy to change stock symbol and reverse stock split, but making the
    company profitable takes much more than this.

  41. Philip B

    Now that IBM is supporting OO and Google is offering StarOffice in their GooglePack this would be a great time to make some cash, empower a partner to counter Office, firm up a valuable relationship w/ Google and position Sun away from a non-core activity.
    So, sell SO to Google. Why?
    1) Sun is not good at consumer apps.
    2) Google clearly values SO. This value can be monitized by Sun so that you can
    a) end your investment in SO development
    b) invest the cash from the sale to other core-areas
    3) Perhaps, instead of, or in addition to, cash, Sun could nail down a commitment from Google to standardize on Solaris/ZFS and various Sun IP.
    4) Google has the resources, vision and skills to make SO/OO a true contender against Office. Heck, Google might even invest the resources to get SO/OO to run natively on Apple which would make millions of Apple fans happy. GoogleOffice anyone?

  42. David Lewis

    I wonder why SUN fail to pick on the most obvious sucess stories ? The biggest success of M$ & CSCO is their certification programs . SUN has tons of materials on their and i hear they have more available under their SAI program. Why not make the content available for wider audience , atleast the user related stuff like JDS,SO which every desktop user can get access to and show their bosses they a Certified Star Office User or Certified GNOME (JDS) user . This could be globally acceretaed by programs like ICDL . This will make the SO,OOo,JDS more popular with users and till then you dont get the End users accept the OS/Desktop Programs you will never become success in Desktop , which has a larger say in your datacenter technologies . And you need to Hire couple of good guys for your SES Program.
    You have a Opensource OS why not a Education material free & Opensource .

  43. Tom

    I very much enjoy Open Office, especially its price.
    But the lack of documentation is maddening. For instance, how do I turn off AutoFormatting, so I don’t have the machine imposing paragraph numbers and formats that I don’t want.
    And, oh for a guide to writing macros that a mediocre tinkerer like I could understand.

  44. Tutorials are a must for openoffice. It’s what led to early and wide adoption of microsoft office applications, in the beginning. Also, I agree some beefing up of the spreadsheet is mandatory. Some high-level functions, perhaps. * As for the deal with Microsoft, I still don’t quite get it, but I’m trusting you in your infinite wisdom(for now, anyways;)). Maybe, it’s to bring over some MCSEs to take a gander at REAL hardware(x64), I don’t know, and then convert them over to Solaris(although it was about a two year learning curve for me 2000-2002)). What does Microsoft get in this deal, though? Someone to service it’s stuff(being that some SCSA were MCSE’s and cross-training them on Windows Server shouldn’t take much doing, and add value to the SCSA)? Oh, well, i guess I’ll have to wait and see like everyone else. 🙂 Much congrats on the share price, lately. I guess that’s why we pay you the big bucks;)…~marco~

  45. Sun Fan

    I’d love to use both SO and OOo, but please work more on them. They are way too slow (opening, saving, execution wise) when compared to the ubiquitous office software.

  46. Fake Webmink

    I’m disappointed.
    Sun and its employees have spent countless hours creating an image of a spotless company that has integrity and a belief in it own abilities. One false move, as you have done today, is enough to send it crashing.
    Yes. Becoming a Windows OEM is going to sell more boxes (I sure hope it does, for your sake). However, the point is that Sun is declaring that it does not believe that its own operating system, which it has been so far proclaiming as the world’s most advanced, is enough to keep it afloat.
    Look at Apple. They have shareholders too. They have had the death knell sounded countless times. And yes, they sell Intel boxes too. But they don’t sell it with Windows on it. Why? Because they genuinely believe that their OS is superior and that their users deserve better. Could they sell more boxes if they were a Windows OEM too? Definitely yes. But they haven’t. Because some things matter more than money.
    So what happens next? Sun becomes another IBM and HP. Solaris becomes an also-ran -its best parts slowly, but surely assimilated into Linux – because the believers will leave.
    Remember. Excellence comes only from vision and integrity – not from Excel (oops, Calc) spreadsheets. And by your latest move, Sun has lost it.
    Good Luck.

  47. Sun Fan

    Great work with the partnerships going Jonathan ! The rising tide will surely lift all boats.

  48. OOo

    Why is it always necessary to add .org to OpenOffice ? OOo name sounds little funny.
    Nevertheless, its undoubtedly a very fruitful project !

  49. Openoffice as an opensource project has produced excellent results. Thanks to SUN for all the support.
    However, the user interaction part of the project is archaic at best. All ideas need to be discussed via a mailing list or an archaic web interface. A dedicated interface like Dell’s ideastorm would go a long way in getting the user community involved. There are no interfaces exported by the project that can be integrated into Web 2.0 space. Are there any plans to update the web interface of the project ?

  50. Alf Igel

    Now that Sun’s and MS’ old buddy SCO has filed for Chap. 11 what was it exactly that Sun bought from SCO for all that money?
    The move to sell Windows just seems like a continuation of Sun’s "everything but Linux" strategy. Financing SCO’s Linux attack didn’t work as planned, so now it has become unavoidable for Sun to become yet another no-name Windows box shifter. Already the move to rename the ticker symbol to JAVA indicated that Sun wants to get out of own hardware development. I think it won’t take long until we’ll only see bog standard Asian OEM hardware rebranded as "Sun" from Sun.

  51. JS-Please think about how OO and its functionality is connected, remember "the network is the computer". I should be able to go to to Options, Spell Checker and get a UDDI-Web Services populated list of Spell Checkers that I can use, some will be free, some will be shareware free with a donation, if they are more sophisticated or vertically oriented then maybe the charge is a nickel a month, or a penny per use. All options, should be driven by a broader larger community. The network is the computer! This will help drive OO and free mixed with good old fashion capitalistic thinking works best, consumers will pay for what is good, others will fall off to the way side – Spell Checkers, Thesauraus, Grammar Checkers, thats just the most simplistic examples…

  52. Alf, Sun supports Linux on their hardware and even had their own distribution for 2 years. Just because someone isn’t giving into this Linux hype doesn’t give you the right to take cheap shots at Sun making blind assumptions about their goals. They are not teaming with Microsoft to kill Linux, they are catering to the market to reduce the problems associated with their prior platform preference. Windows runs on x86_64, and customers demand it. Windows servers account for around 30% in datacenters worldwide, and by not supporting it, they would be making a huge mistake.
    Obviously you haven’t followed Sun much since Jonathan came in, because he’s not responsible for the aftereffects of bad management practices ingrained in their employees. They have something like 36,000 employees, mostly working in Santa Clara, and even with someone with the vision of Jonathan or Google’s CEO, Eric Schmidt cannot help all the internal problems. Just look at the president, congress, our court system, it’s not very efficient, and that’s just how monolithic operation goes.
    Regarding their stock name change, assuming they are getting out of hardware is very blind on your part. The UltraSPARC Nigara II microprocessor was recently unveiled and features double the performance of the original, with the same energy fingerprint, or less. Sun has always been a hardware company, just follow their history back to the switch from Motorola 68K to their own RISC architecture in the 1980’s. Enterprises prefer the Solaris + SPARC package, and this is not a blind claim, because afterall, Solaris is free unless you need support, and Sun offers protection to all users from patent claims, regardless of them buying support. The same cannot be said for Red Hat, who now caters specifically to the enterprise, with 2x more costly support options and limited platform support. Solaris lately has finally become accepted as a reliable and well supported operating system, and has been in development as open-source for more than 2 years. Enterprises do not like upgrading every 2 years, which is why they prefer UNIX and UNIX-like systems in the first place, and Solaris has introduced some competition that has further improved the design of Linux and other systems. Take FreeBSD for example, they adoped Solaris’ threading model, and have ported DTrace and ZFS. Not to get into licensing details too much here, but it’s not Sun’s fault for giving into the GPL, because it’s not a preferred license for vendors, as so many people are ingrained in the proprietary model, and this is not due to change much in their mind, except for the adoption of middleware and software solutions that run on top of their current infrastructure. Sun is planning for the long term, and they will probably switch everything over eventually, but now is not the time to switch their vast software portfolio to that development and distribution model. It’s dangerous to switch commercial software in development for 2 decades to open license, when some of it is not their own, which is why OpenSolaris is under CDDL, it’s to do with the GPLv3 being in draft, and the unknowns of patent protection. Sun does own a lot of patents, which they do not enforce to their open-source projects, they actually use them to protect them. Sun is responsible for Open Document and a large portion of the codebase, because they bought it back in 1998 and have hundreds of engineers in-house working on it in addition to the community.
    Claiming Sun gave money to SCO to fight Linux is a misnomer, it was for protection from the unknowns, for customers and users of their software. At the time it made sense, because no one knew who owned UNIX until recently when judge Kimball declared Novell owned it and merely gave SCO license management rights.
    As large as a company that Sun is, blame upper management if you want, but understand that there are roadmaps, risks, and many concerns of customers that have dictated how Sun operates, which if changed immediately would had resulted in even larger losses.

  53. Congratulations to the Sun team for this great endorsement of OpenOffice from IBM. The Projity team has contributed OpenProj as a complete replacement of Microsoft Project to the open source community. Project is part of the Microsoft Office family of solutions so this is another positive for the OpenOffice efforts. OpenProj is closing in on 100,000 downloads in the first week and is being downloaded every 30 seconds around the clock….Project has a list price of $1,000 so a free replacement that is available on Linux, Unix, Mac or Windows is a strong competitive issue for Microsoft. OpenOffice is making great progress, congratulations !!!

  54. Frans

    This opens the door to what I have preached a long time co-existence.
    There is room for both Sun Solaris and MS Windows. We only care about the OS because we are (technical) engineers. Do you care who have created the movie you watch on your tv or at the cinema? No you care to see an instance of the movie when and where it suites you.
    Same for Applications, you are interested in the instance of the application to use where and when it suites you. Jonathan I was so surprised that the free license for Sunray Technology was revoked.
    The barrier to entry into creating this common display layer where you don’t care where the application comes from …Solaris ,Windows , Linux or "the new backend os " is back again.
    Sir Please consider removing this barrier.

  55. microsoft is a double edged sword

  56. towsonu2003

    I’m barely on topic but bear with me: I think the criticism in the comments of this link would help OOo rise:

  57. SW

    It’s good news, but OO.o and StarOffice are getting more and more bloated and buggy with every release, and the GUI resembles the worst toolbar excesses of the mid-90’s. Now that even MS have completely changed the look and feel of Office, it’s about time Sun bit the bullet and re-engineered OO.o from the ground up into a lean, mean MS-compatible office suite, like Apple are doing with Pages and Keynote.

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