NeoOffice/J 0.7 Released
While we're celebrating the third birthday of OpenOffice.org, I'd like to pass huge congratulations to Patrick Luby on the release of v0.7 of NeoOffice/J for Mac OS X. He has single-handedly written a highly usable front-end for the Mac OS X port of OpenOffice.org 1.0.3 (itself an enormous achievement - credit especially to Ed Peterlin and Dan Williams) so that it doesn't require X11 to use. This new release makes it almost feature-complete, and it will make a lot of Mac users very happy.
Patrick has avoided needing either X11 or extensive Aqua programming by using core Java technology and leveraging its existing integration into Aqua. As a porting strategy I think that's pretty smart. This release adds printing, which for me was the missing link. There's still plenty of work to be done, but it's very cool.
This program is a case-study in the power of the open source method. With neither Sun nor Apple in a position business-wise to work on a Mac version of OpenOffice.org, the fact that all the source code was freely usable allowed capable and committed developers to 'do their own thing' and meet a community need. Traditional approaches to software would have left the idea to wither - this approach, through the energy of a few software engineers, lets many flowers bloom.
[Also posted to Webmink]