history and community

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This is Appendix B of Getting Started with 3.x, produced by the OOoAuthors group. A PDF of this chapter is available from this wiki page. The PDFs are up to date for the second edition of the book, but not all of the wiki pages for this chapter have been updated yet.

Introduction is both a product and an open-source project. If you are new to OOo, its open source development, and the community that produces and supports it, you should read this appendix.

A short history of

The project began when Sun Microsystems released the source code (“blueprints”) for its StarOffice® software to the open source community on October 13, 2000. This allowed Sun to use the technical expertise and rapid development times of an open-source project in the development of its own software products. All recent versions of Sun’s StarOffice use source code developed by the community. However, the products do not provide exactly the same features due to the copyrights of third parties that are not compatible with open-source licensing. 1.0, the product, was released on April 30, 2002.

Read more about’s history and organization

Information about StarOffice

The community's Mission Statement is:

“To create, as a community, the leading international office suite that will run on all major platforms and provide access to all functionality and data through open-component based APIs and an XML-based file format.”

The project is primarily sponsored by Sun Microsystems, which is the primary contributor of code to the Project. Our other major corporate contributors include Novell, RedHat, RedFlag CH2000, IBM, and Google. Additonally over 450,000 people from nearly every curve of the globe have joined this Project with the idea of creating the best possible office suite that all can use. This is the essence of an “open source” community!

With its free software licence and active Native Language Confederation, is a key player in the drive to eradicate digital exclusion and preserve minority languages threatened by being on the wrong side of the digital divide. For tens of thousands of community members, this makes the community their volunteering opportunity of choice.

The community invites contributors. Whatever you do best, you can do it for As well as software developers, the Community welcomes translators, artists, technical writers and editors, testers, people offering user support, sales and marketing people, lobbyists, donors... the list is long. The Community operates internationally in all time zones, linked by the internet.

Content on this page is licensed under the Creative Common Attribution 3.0 license (CC-BY).
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