License, open source, OpenDocument
How is OpenOffice.org licensed?
OpenOffice.org is distributed under the Open Source Initiative (OSI) approved Lesser General Public License (LGPL).
The LGPL can be viewed on the OOo website at: http://www.openoffice.org/licenses/lgpl_license.html
For more general information on OOo’s licensing, please refer to: http://www.openoffice.org/license.html
What is “open source”?
The ideals of open-source software can be explained by the four essential rights, which are embodied within the Free Software Foundation’s General Public License (GPL):
- The right to use the software for any purpose.
- Freedom to redistribute the software for free or for a fee.
- Access to the complete source code of the program (that is, the “blueprints”).
- The right to modify any part of the source, or use portions of it in other programs.
Another view of this philosophy comes from the Open Source Definiton:
“The basic idea behind open source is very simple: When programmers can read, redistribute, and modify the source code for a piece of software, the software evolves. People improve it, people adapt it, people fix bugs. And this can happen at a speed that, if one is used to the slow pace of conventional software development, seems astonishing.”
For more information on Free and Open Source software, visit these websites:
Open Source Initiative (OSI): http://www.opensource.org
Free Software Foundation (FSF): http://www.gnu.org
What is OpenDocument?
Starting with Version 2.0, OpenOffice.org by default saves documents in Open Document Format (ODF). OpenOffice.org 3 has adopted version 1.2 of the OpenDocument standard.
OpenDocument is an XML-based file format for office documents (text documents, spreadsheets, drawings, presentations and more), developed at OASIS, an independent, international standards group.
Unlike other file formats, ODF is an open standard. It is publicly available, royalty-free, and without legal or other restrictions; therefore ODF files are not tied to a specific office suite and anybody can build a program that interprets these files. For this reason ODF is quickly becoming the preferred file format for government agencies, schools and other companies who prefer not to be too dependent on a particular software supplier.
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