IBM Joins Open Office Community

Sep 10, 2007

Open Office development will benefit from IBM's own development activities.

IBM today officially joined the Open Office Community as the Open Source project announced via its Announce mailing list. As IBM uses Open Office technologies in its own products, it is now looking to contribute to the project.

IBM's Lotus Notes 8 draws on Open Office; users can launch Productivity Tools to create, modify and import documents, slideshows and spreadsheets in Open Document Format (ODF).

It still remains to be seen what IBM will contribute to the project in the line of code, but one thing is clear: Open Office will benefit from IBM's barrier free activities. IBM donated interfaces to Iaccessible2, an API specially designed to improve barrier-free use, to the Free Standards Group late last year to support the development of an open standard.

In an FAQ on the subject of IBM's community membership, IBM clearly states why it has waited until now to make its move. The answer is clear-cut and honest: Open Office and the ODF format have become so popular that it is worthwhile IBM joining.

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