2008 Q2 Review of Spreadsheet Project

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Review of the OpenOffice.org Spreadsheet project (April/May 2008)

Review schedule

  • start of review: April 28th
  • review of collected issues: May 5th, 3pm UTC, #ooocalc on freenode
  • start of sorting priorities and assignments May 5th
  • review of final list: May 13th, 3pm UTC, #ooocalc on freenode

Status of the project

what are the most severe issues in the current release

High voted issues April 2008 (all types - defects, features, enhancements):

  1. Issue no.: 8302: (111 Votes) Want to be able to insert into the middle of merged cells
  2. Issue no.: 5560: (75) Spreadsheet Sheet Labels (change Color and Font)
  3. Issue no.: 5930: (71) Engineering Notation
  4. Issue no.: 12666: (61) Autofilter works just on one sheet (only one auto-range per
  5. Issue no.: 30215: (57) Further thoughts on row limits
  6. Issue no.: 20857: (55) R1C1 notation for the spreadsheet
  7. Issue no.: 21280: (50) Automatic Insert (shift down or shift right) of cells, colum
  8. Issue no.: 2131: (47) Ability to merge cells already merged
  9. Issue no.: 15773: (45) Currency symbol left justified, while amount right justified
  10. Issue no.: 59745: (44) Cell notes do not move when cells are sorted in Calc
  11. Issue no.: 35579: (42) Standard filter requires more options..
  12. Issue no.: 6087: (40) ODF: Allow all characters in sheet names
  13. Issue no.: 25855: (38) Copy multiple seperated rows
  14. Issue no.: 22762: (33) Page preview for Selection
  15. Issue no.: 33723: (31) Ability to turn off Number Recognition in Calc
  16. Issue no.: 5658: (24) Spreadsheet thinks a number is a string (text)
  17. Issue no.: 87970: (22) Hebrew Characters in Spreadsheet Names Became Misdisplayed
  18. Issue no.: 38494: (21) Copy/Paste numbers from Writer to Calc: decimal separator in
  19. Issue no.: 5759: (19) DataPilot: allow more than 8 data fields
  20. Issue no.: 3687: (18) Make CSV import/export filter settings persistent (e.g. the

which are the most requested (or needed) features (in the press, user forums, issues, other feedback)

The following ux-ctest issues have been recorded during usability sessions.

  1. Issue no.: 60408: Sum Icon in Calc not Found: Specification
  2. Issue no.: 60403: Edit menu: Expected menu command to duplicate sheets
  3. Issue no.: 60402: German terminology in context menu for sheet controls could be misunderstood
  4. Issue no.: 60401: Calc does not support all users' strategies regarding sorting data
  5. Issue no.: 60400: Spreadsheet handling wording table vs. spreadsheet
  6. Issue no.: 60399: Delete Columns/Rows in the context menu is missing if the cursor is not positioned on Column/Row Header

The following issues have been recorded during expert talks with customers.

  1. Issue no.: 969: Auto-Correct on leaving cells does not work
  2. Issue no.: ??????: Add Color Picker and Link to Color Dialog to Color Float
  3. Issue no.: 66484: Missing Range Chooser Issue
  4. Issue no.: 5432: F4 should repeat last command
  5. Issue no.: 10864: Color chooser do not show latest color
  6. Issue no.: 88521: [1]: Print Output Scaling Factor

Usability problems

  1. Issue 87999 : (11 votes) In "standard" data type CSV import should never convert items with one dot to dates
Users very often struggle with this problem. Some issues from the issue tracker: Issue 6315 Issue 7606 Issue 13156 Issue 18458 Issue 20804 Issue 23024 Issue 25201 Issue 31326 Issue 59339 Issue 65142 Issue 67813 Issue 69097 Issue 72449 Issue 82196 Issue 88243 . They are all closed as "worksforme" or "invalid" or "duplicate", but they show that the import of CSV files needs improvement. The issue is related to Issue 33723 but not the same.

short term planning

which defect needs to go into the next release

None at the moment, but we agreed to be flexible for any incoming new issues if any, especially those with patches.

which features will be worked on for the half year

  1. ODFF formula changes
  2. Excel 2007 import
  3. Calc collaboration (extend change tracking for formatting and attributes)
  4. Issue no.: 14893: (3) Excel displays Grid lines on a per sheet basis, Calc on a per document basis
  5. Issue no.: 85305: (1) Dynamically grow a filtered range for autofilter, standard filter, and advanced filter
  6. Issue no.: 86856:Show Formula Syntax in tip help.
  7. Issue no.: 88521:Adding scaling factor on page preview in calc.

which issues needs an assignment

mid/long term planning

which features/bugfixes needs to be addressed in the next two/three years

unassigned feature/bugfixes

long-term suggestions

  1. separate functional units
    • split Calc into 2 functional units / separate applications
    • one broad table/canvas application for general users, similar to Apple's Numbers
    • one application focused on professional spreadsheet users
  2. general use:
    • modalities for easier and more productive table input: a lot of brainstorming needed
      professional users would benefit as well
    • ease table formatting:
      • issue 78181 and Apple's iWorks Tutorial movie 1 and movie 2: table styles, striped tables, highlight current row, headers and footer rows (results row)
      • advanced canvas formatting:
    • ease and implement automatic analysis features (very basic ones - like correct descriptive statistics)
      • SUMMARY() function: compute automatically all needed results for descriptive statistics purposes and export results adapted as for publication needs (e.g. in academic settings)(see also the discussion on the OASIS mailing list)
  3. professional use:
    • catch numerous errors by implementing strong typing: see issue 79924
    • prepare for multidimensional spreadsheets / OLAP functionality:
      • split table into functional layers
      • separate data layer from formula layer (see next section: multidimensional spreadsheets)
      • separate general definitions of constants, variables, and names into a separate spreadsheet header: see issue 67499 and issue 66886
      • separate spreadsheet and table headings from data layer: see Company Logo and Apple's iWorks tutorial on adding various elements to the canvas
      • separate results from Data Layer: issue not yet filed
    • implement multidimensional spreadsheets: see issue 85825
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