[Review] Community status report

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[Review] Community status report

Peter Kovacs-3
Hello all,

I have written this evening a Blogpost draft. Since I think it is hard
to start with one and we lack communications with the outside world I
tried to write one that gives a high level technical overview what is
going on.

I hope this is okay, I fear it is still quite too technical. And I hope
the basic idea is okay and the tone is good.

I am glad for contributions and critics. :)

 ¬†All the Best

Peter

################################ Blog Post draft
######################################

Hello World!

My name is Peter Kovacs and I am the current Chairman of OpenOffice. The
Chairman is a secretary job that writes the reports to the foundation
board, in order to inform them on the state of the Project.

I do this in my freetime, next to work and on top of all the other
things thatt happen in live. Unpaied of course. This is currently true
for all volunteers active on OpenOffice.

The current situation in development can be devided in 3 main activities.

 1.

    Code release and maintenance.

 2.

    Upgrade dependencies

 3.

    Build environment updates

On the first level we have a gap between Code development and code that
has been released. We usually refer to this as 4.1.x line and trunk. We
have the challenge that the quality of trunk line is not in release
state, and the 4.1.x line is quite behind the trunk line. So from time
to time we make maintenance releases, of the old 4.1.0 line in order to
keep OpenOffice functional. While we try to enhance the trunk code to be
able to be released as 4.2.0. We try to fix bugs on the way and update
dependencies, or create enhancements as possible.

If we look at the code system dependencies, OpenOffice uses old Windows
SDK and MacOSx SDK. Current 4.1.x line is build on top of Windows 7 SDK
which is not publicly available any more. For Mac the Line is on 10.7.
For 4.2.0 we want to use Windows 10 SDK and for Mac also newer ones.
However these updates are quite difficult to do in some code regions of
OpenOffice. We are also working on a 64bit version.

If we take a look at the build process, the situation is quite
difficult. OpenOffice is very complex software, clustered in a lot of
modules. The technique used to do this is 20 years old. We try to
modernize the environment. This process is very difficult in some
regions of the code. Also we need to migrate to a environment that is
potential supporting all plattforms the code recieves contributions
from. That are the community supported Windows, MacOs and Linux
plattforms, plus FreeBSD and OS/2 plattforms where we recieve upstream
patches from these plattform communities.

Additional enhancements mainly depend on additional Volunteer
contributions. We try to support these on the development community
level the best to our capabilities, but it depends on the additional
volunteers, who are involved.

I hope this gives you a feeling what is going on. It is like a big
Gordian knot, and we are forging the sword to cut it. It might be not
innovative, but we believe with each step we make forward OpenOffice is
becomming a more sturdy Office suite. It is a long road ahead of course.