Tue. Dec 7th, 2021


LibreOffice has included an necessary function that has been damaged for years. Jack Wallen takes on the duty of not solely calling out the issue however calling on builders to resolve the problem.

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Picture: Jack Wallen

I have been masking LibreOffice for a really very long time. Over the previous couple of years that protection has slowed to a crawl as conventional workplace suites have turn out to be a bit antiquated. Within the place of the tried and true, domestically put in workplace suites, cloud-based choices like Google Workspace and Office365 have taken over. And with good trigger.

Simply check out my use case. I’m an expert author. I spend most of my day writing and typically go from machine to machine to take action. Due to that, I want entry to no matter I am engaged on from anyplace. On prime of that, I want a dependable backup answer. Sure, I may make a domestically put in answer like LibreOffice work, however it will take appreciable effort for it to incorporate the options I rely upon with Google Workspace.

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One of many greatest points is saving a file from LibreOffice to the cloud. It is a function the builders baked into the software program a while in the past. Nonetheless, it hasn’t labored for a very long time. I bear in mind, years in the past, making an attempt to get the LibreOffice Distant Save to work with Google Cloud. The function is obtainable, however I do not know that it has ever labored.

Over the previous few years, I’ve revisited the subject, and each time I discover the function nonetheless would not work. Google it and you will find the identical grievance courting again 3+ years in the past. Three years is a very long time to have a function not work in a chunk of software program. It makes one surprise why the builders have continued together with it.

A number of weeks in the past, I reached out to LibreOffice about this very subject. Their response was simple: They do not have a developer to work on it.

That is fairly frequent inside the world of open supply improvement. When a crew consists principally of volunteers, it is onerous to search out assist. And when a function is not essential to the performance of the appliance, it is going to get sidelined. 

Factor is, the distant save function ought to be thought of essential. Folks have migrated to the cloud. The plenty rely upon the likes of Google Drive, Microsoft OneDrive, and Dropbox. So when an workplace suite, similar to LibreOffice, teases a function that might assist make it (considerably) combine with the cloud, that is thrilling. To have the ability to save recordsdata on to Google Drive or open recordsdata from Google Drive may transfer the likes of Linux nearer to mass attraction.

Take into account this: If LibreOffice will get that performance working, the workplace suite could possibly be one step nearer to feeling (at the least considerably) cloud-native. Not less than it will be cloud-adjacent. And that is necessary to modern-day customers who’d fairly maintain their knowledge in a cloud drive than native storage.

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So what’s a crew just like the LibreOffice builders to do? Although I really feel I am fairly nicely linked with the open supply group, I do not ever bear in mind the LibreOffice crew calling out to builders the world over to say, “Hey, we’d like a developer who might help repair our distant save performance! Anybody ?”

Guess what … I will do it for them.

In case you’re a developer who feels as if you may step in and at last repair that distant save function in LibreOffice, head over to the Begin hacking LibreOffice at present! web page and attain out to the crew. Allow them to know you are focused on serving to, so this must-have function can lastly operate as anticipated.

It should not be this difficult. Sure, I get it: Creating software program is a difficult career. However discovering high quality builders for a venture as necessary as LibreOffice should not be a job that requires Herculean effort. The onus for that is on LibreOffice. Though builders ought to be within the behavior of reaching out to a crew (to become involved), tasks similar to LibreOffice ought to all the time be selling duties that require assist, particularly when mentioned function may actually assist deliver the suite consistent with modern-day use instances.

So, what do you say, developer world? Are you able to step up and assist LibreOffice make good on a promise to permit customers to save lots of and open recordsdata to/from Google Drive (and different cloud providers)? If that’s the case, what are you ready for?

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