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From Fernando Cassia <>
Subject Re: StarOffice (was RE: users Digest 28 Nov 2012 19:50:51 -0000 Issue 232)
Date Thu, 29 Nov 2012 20:01:51 GMT
On Thu, Nov 29, 2012 at 4:21 PM, M Henri Day <> wrote:

> I suspect, Fernando, that «the freedom fighters» at LO would find that your
> description of events had omitted a significant detail - i e, that Oracle's
> «development» of OO.o was half-hearted at best and that that that was why
> they decided to create a fork, as nothing much seemed to be happening under
> Oracle's leadership.

I guess that like in any historical event, there´s two versions of history.

What I know was that certain press (the same that later insisted AOO was
overkill, and that LO was best) trumpeted news stories about an alleged
"massive exodus". And when I digged a little, it turns the massive exodus
was 30 devs (initially).

Then someone who had jumped ship and admitted that there 100 people at
Sun/Oracle told me I could not quote that info with his name.

> The fact that so many of the OOo developers went over
> to TDF would seem to corroborate this version....

Again, it seems that "so many" was actually a third.

Here, Shuttleworth says:

" He said that Sun made a $100 million "gift" to the community when it
opened up the OpenOffice code. But a "radical faction" made the lives of
the OpenOffice developers "hell" _by refusing to contribute code under the
Sun agreement_. That eventually led to the split, but furthermore led
Oracle to finally decide to stop OpenOffice development and _lay off *100

That means that Oracle had 100 people working on OO. Not very "half
hearted" and I guess it´s a bit difficult to have 100 people doing nothing.
And why would they do an OO conference in Hungary in 2010 if they wanted to
kill the product?

Perhaps what I hate more about this whole ordeal is the arrogant attitude
of  the forkers. Akin to spitting someone in the face, saying "I hate you"
then inviting them for dinner as if nothing had happened, which is what
happened when TDF "invited" Oracle to join TDF. Then they acted surprised
when Ellison gave them the finger and gave OO to Apache instead...

I know my point of view -or Shuttleworth´s- is not a popular one, as it
contradicts what much of the IT press reported at the time -the usual
portrayal of bad, bad Corporation vs the Freedom Fighting community.

What I care about is the results of their actions: a great commercial
product like StarOffice which at one point I believe had close to 4-5% of
the corporate office suite market share has been lost. (19% if you added
StarOffice with OO.o - Yankee Group, 2005).

Anyway... I guess this will be a debate for historians, if they cared about
software. :-P


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