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From Rob Weir <robw...@apache.org>
Subject Next steps for Symphony and AOO
Date Tue, 12 Jun 2012 01:08:16 GMT
As we wait [0] for the Symphony [1] code to be loaded into Subversion
I think it would be good to start a discussion on "next steps" of how
we can make best use of this contribution.

Hopefully you've had time to review the list of features on the wiki
[2], install one of the binaries [3] , or maybe even download the
source [4] and try to build it [5].

As will see by your examination, the Symphony code base has co-evolved
with OpenOffice.org for several years now, and continued to co-evolve
with Apache OpenOffice even recently.  Symphony has many features and
bug fixes that AOO lacks.  And there are areas where Symphony is
missing enhancements or bug fixes that are in OpenOffice.

Our challenge is to find the best way to bring these two code bases
together, to make the best product.

I think there are two main approaches to this problem:

I.  Merge code, from Symphony, feature by feature, into AOO, in a
prioritized order.  This is the "slow" approach, since it would take
(by the estimates I've seen) a couple of years to bring all of the
Symphony enhancements and bug fixes over to AOO.

II.  Use Symphony as the the new base, and merge (over time) AOO (and
OOo) enhancements and bug fixes into the new trunk.  This approach
quickly gives a new UI, something we could fairly call Apache
OpenOffice 4.0.  But this approach would also give us some short-term
pain.   For example, those involved in porting AOO 3.4 would need to
merge their patches into the new trunk.   We'd need to update license
headers again.  Help files and translation are done differently in
Symphony, and so on.

Looked at another way, option I is a slow, but easy path.  Option II
is a leap forward, but will be initially more work and disruption.
Evolution versus Revolution.

So let's discuss.  Please ask questions about the pro's and con's of
each approach.  The code and binaries are all posted, and my IBM
colleagues in Beijing are happy to answer your questions.

Regards,

-Rob


[0] https://issues.apache.org/jira/browse/INFRA-4799

[1] http://wiki.services.openoffice.org/wiki/Symphony

[2] http://wiki.services.openoffice.org/wiki/Symphony_contribution

[3] http://people.apache.org/~zhangjf/symphony/build/

[4] https://svn-master.apache.org/repos/test/danielsh/symphony-import/

[5] http://wiki.services.openoffice.org/wiki/How_to_build_Symphony%27s_source_code

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