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Open source users snub OpenOffice Renaissance plans

Cliff Saran

The open source community has been left outraged by Project Renaissance, a plan by OpenOffice.org to revamp the Open Office user interface, mimicking the look and feel of Microsoft Office 2010.

One user on Sun's Open Office blog said: "Why is OpenOffice.org aping Office 2007's 'Ribbon' design? In addition to being unfamiliar to most users, it looks terribly out of place on anything except Windows Vista/7. Will there at least be an option to use an interface that is, er, usable?"

Another said: "This would be a killer feature for not using OpenOffice.org don't implement this, do other things - like live editing in presentation, a correct ttf/otf export or such things."

Other users complained that the new user interface uses screen space very inefficiently.

Frank Loehmann, OpenOffice.org user experience project lead user experience engineer, said: "The prototype is a mid-fidelity one. So no polished UI. We just want to be able to test the interaction. Content of the toolbars and the group labelling are subject to change. They show just what can be done in this prototype. This allows us to create UX tests that can be run with current OpenOffice.org and the prototypes."


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