The KOffice team is proud to announce the first beta of KOffice 2.0. The goal of this release is to gather feedback from both users and developers on the new UI and underlying infrastructure. This will allow us to release a usable 2.0 release, demonstrating our vision for the future of the digital office to a larger audience and attract new contributions both in terms of code and ideas for improvements. Read on for more information or see the announcement and download it from the release notes.
This is the first beta release of KOffice 2.0, and the first version we encourage users to download and try out. After a very long development cycle KOffice is now in feature freeze. The development team will from now on shift focus from new features to bug fixes until 2.0 is released.
The release team has decided that the following applications are mature enough to be part of 2.0:
- KWord, Word processor
- KSpread, Spreadsheet calculator
- KPresenter, Presentation manager
- KPlato, Project management software
- Karbon, Vector graphics editor
- Krita, Raster graphics editor
The chart application KChart is available as a shape plugin, which means that charts are available in all the KOffice applications in an integrated manner.
Highlights of KOffice 2.0
KOffice 2 will be a much more flexible application suite than KOffice 1 ever was. The integration between the components is much stronger, with the revolutionary Flake Shapes as the central concept. A Flake Shape can be as simple as a square or a circle or as complex as a chart or a music score.
With Flake, any KOffice application can handle any shape. For instance, KWord can embed bitmap graphics, Krita can embed vector graphics and Karbon can embed charts. This flexibility does not only give KOffice unprecedented integration, but also allows new applications to be created very easily. Such applications could target special user groups such as children or certain professions.
Unified Look and Feel
All the applications of KOffice have a new GUI layout better suited to today's wider screens. The GUI consists of a workspace and a sidebar where tools can dock. Any tool can be ripped off to create its own window and later be redocked for full flexibility. The users setup preferences are of course saved and reused the next time that KOffice is started.
All of KOffice is available on Linux with KDE or GNOME, Windows and Macintosh. Solaris will follow shortly and we expect builds for other Unix versions to become available soon after the final release. Since KOffice builds on Qt and the KDE libraries, all applications integrate well with the respective platforms and will take on the native look and feel.
Native Support for OpenDocument
KOffice uses the OpenDocument Format as its native format. This will guarantee interoperation with many other Office packages such as OpenOffice.org and MS Office. The KOffice team has representatives on the OASIS technical committee for ODF and has been a strong participant in the process of shaping ODF since its inception.