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From Rob Weir <apa...@robweir.com>
Subject ODF Toolkit Incubation Pre-Proposal
Date Mon, 27 Jun 2011 19:42:32 GMT
I'm cc'ing the POI and OpenOffice projects, inviting them to join this
discussion on the Incubator general list: general@incubator.apache.org

When we were discussing the OpenOffice proposal a few weeks ago I
mentioned that there was another set of technology called the ODF
Toolkit, that we might want to bring to Apache as well.  I heard some
enthusiasm for this at the time, but I didn't have the bandwidth to
put together another proposal.  Now I do.  I'd like to pitch the idea,
and see if there is still interest in having a formal incubation
proposal submitted, and if so, identifying a Champion and Sponsor for
the proposal.

Note that this would not be a fork.  The ODF Toolkit Union Steering
Committee met this morning and agreed to propose moving to Apache.

As you probably know, ODF == Open Document Format, a open standard
document format for office documents.  The ODF standard is created at
OASIS and then sent to ISO/IEC JTC1 for transposition into an
International Standard.  ODF 1.0 was first published in 2005.  ODF 1.1
came out in 2007.  And ODF 1.2 is "Candidate OASIS Standard" awaiting
final approval in OASIS, probably by end of September.  ODF 1.2 is
what most applications are supporting today.   OpenOffice,
LibreOffice, Symphony, KOffice/Calligra Suite use ODF as native
formats.  Other applications, including Microsoft Office, Corel
Wordperfect and Google Docs offer some degree of import/export
support.  ODF 1.2 is the version also supported by the ODF Toolkit.

The ODF Toolkit Union maintains the following toolkits, all of them
under the Apache 2.0 license:

1) ODFDOM is Java-based typed DOM API, relatively low level, a 1-to-1
mapping to the ODF schema.  In fact, much of the code is generated by
processing the schema.

http://odftoolkit.org/projects/odfdom/pages/Home

2) Simple Java API for ODF is a high level wrapper of ODFDOM.  So
operations that might require several DOM-level operations, like
deleting a column in a spreadsheet, are a single operation in the
Simple API.  Search and replace, copying slides from one presentation
to another, adding hyperlinks to a selection, etc., are top level
operations.

http://simple.odftoolkit.org/

3) The Conformance Tools projects is also in Java, and includes an
online conformance checker of ODF documents, which can also be run in
command line mode.

http://odftoolkit.org/projects/conformancetools/pages/Home

4) XSLTRunner and XSLT Runner Task allows easy use of XSLT transforms
with ODF documents.

http://odftoolkit.org/projects/conformancetools/pages/ODFXSLTRunner

5) AODL is a C#/.NET library for ODF

http://odftoolkit.org/projects/aodl/pages/Home

I think there is natural synergy with Apache, especially with the Java
components.  For example, I could see publishing pipelines involving
the ODF Toolkit with PDFBox, Batik, FOP, and POI. Having these tools
under a common license, in one place, has obvious benefits.

Moving this project over would not be a large technical effort.
Mercurial ==> SVN,  some simple website/wiki migration, 30 or so
pages, a few mailing lists and bugzilla databases.  It is currently on
the Kenai infrastructure, so similar to OpenOffice, just much, much
smaller in scale.

I'm open as to whether this would be best eventually as a TLP or as
part of an existing project, like POI or even OpenOffice.  I'm leaning
a little toward having this as a TLP, but I'm open to other ideas.

Also, since this is already an open source project with all code under
Apache 2.0, I assume no SGA is required?

So please let me know if you agree that Apache would be a good
location to further develop the ODF Toolkit libraries.

Regards,

-Rob

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