KOffice 2.2 Beta 1 released
The KOffice developers have announced the release of the first beta of version 2.2 of their open source office suite. KOffice is composed of the KWord word processor, KSpread spreadsheet, KPresenter presentation manager, KPlato project management, Karbon vector graphics editor and Krita, a raster graphics editor. The Beta 1 release will be followed by a second beta on the 6th of April, after which a release candidate is scheduled for the 27th of April, 2010.
The latest development release features the addition of new import filters for the MS OOXML formats that were introduced in Microsoft Office 2007 and a data manager application called Kexi, modelled after Microsoft Access. Library updates include added support for filter effects on group shapes, sections in text and loading / saving path data for connection shapes. The Krita graphics editor has also received a number of updates, including GIF import, support for PPM, XFC and JPEG200, and burn and dodge filters. Other changes include the return of a spelling checker in KWord, support for presentation variables in KPresenter and improved doc, xls and ppt filters.
The developers also note that KOffice 2.2 will be the first release to include a significant number of code contributions from external companies and organisations, adding that mobile phone manufacturer Nokia has "sponsored much work on the general improvements and the converters for importing MS file formats for their Maemo office viewers".
As with all development releases, use in production environments and on mission critical machines is not advised. Users participating in the bug fixing process are asked to report any issues that they encounter.
More details about the release can be found in the change log and the release announcement. According to the developers, packaged binary versions of KOffice 2.2 Beta 1 will be available to download soon and are licensed under LGPL 2+ and under the GPL.
The final release date for version of KOffice 2.2, however, has yet to be confirmed. The latest stable release of KOffice is version 2.1.1, the first bug fix release in the 2.1 series, from the 14th of January.
- KOffice 2.1 arrives, a report from The H.