The KOffice team has announced the availability of the third beta version of KOffice 2.0, a free and open source cross-platform office suite very much like the popular OpenOffice.org. KOffice is part of the K Desktop Environment, though with a separate release cycle.
According to the release announcement:
The goal for the third beta is to show progress made since beta2, as well as to gather feedback from both users and developers on the new UI and underlying infrastructure. This will allow us to release a basically usable 2.0 release, demonstrating our vision for the future of the Digital Office to a larger audience and attract new contributions both in terms of code and ideas for improvements.
KOffice is in beta because the development team wants to receive feedback and bugreports from actual users. Since the last beta release a significant set of improvements and speedups have been integrated for all applications and this release shows the continuous focus on bug fixes until 2.0 is released.
Highlights of KOffice 2.0
KOffice 2 will be a much more flexible application suite than KOffice 1 ever was. The integration between the components is much stronger, with the revolutionary Flake Shapes as the central concept. A Flake Shape can be as simple as a square or a circle or as complex as a chart or a music score.
With Flake, any KOffice application can handle any shape. For instance, KWord can embed bitmap graphics, Krita can embed vector graphics and Karbon can embed charts. This flexibility does not only give KOffice unprecedented integration, but also allows new applications to be created very easily. Such applications can e.g. target special user groups like kids or certain professions.
The complete KOffice suite has twelve applications, but for the final release of version 2.0, only the following applications will be featured:
- KWord – Word processor
- KSpread – Spreadsheet calculator
- KPresenter – Presentation manager
- KPlato – Project management software
- Karbon – Vector graphics editor
- Krita – Raster graphics editor
You may read the full release announcement here, and download instructions here.