What we cannot speak about we must pass over in silenceLudwig Wittgenstein
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Finally after two months absence from the blogging circuit, I finally see something earlier today worth shouting from the rooftops. The release of OpenOffice.org 2.0. Features include support for the OASIS Document Format (also used by KOffice), a new database frontend (BASE) for DML and DDL, and integration of XForms for web form creation. Could this finally make OpenOffice a worthy adversary for other proprietary and monopolising office suites?
Posted on Oct 20, 2005 at 23:24:37.
Also relates to Firefox and Co
Back in April I posted an entry on the Firefox extensions I found most useful supplemented by instruction on safely installing new extensions. Since reaching Preview Release, the Extension Manager has made the later discussion redundant. At the same time, the new Extension Room and older repository has seen the number and variety of extensions for Firefox grow extensively. With my former post the top viewed page on this weblog, I decided it was time for a quick update.
Some of the extensions I recommended in April are no longer relevant while others can now be found under new project names. So here is my list:
Feel free to recommend any other extensions you may have found useful that I have not mentioned above. And since I recommended Gmail Notifier, if anyone is still after a Gmail invite leave your email address in the comment with your recommendations and I will send you one (so long as my invites continue to top up). Just counting down the days now to the final release…
Also relates to Firefox and Co
…as a matter of fact, as Firefox gears up for landmark version 1.0, I fear we will see miracles before us in the form of an Internet browser. Firefox is that good. It really is. Look out Internet Explorer… your days have been numbered for some time now, but Firefox 1.0 will surely leave you shaking on your already shaky foundations and standing in a small warm puddle. First Look at Mozilla Firefox 0.9 by Adam Doxtater
What is so significant about the version 9 release of Firefox (code named One Tree Hill) is that this is the final technological preview before the browser is released into the wild. Bar bug fixing this is very much how Firefox will appear.
The one feature that was lacking has finally arrived in this release - the extension/theme manager. While I was quite happy playing with my chrome, this improvement should finally make the home user market sit up and notice there is a life beyond the exploder. The online extensions repository has also been updated and is far more usable with the clever addition of RSS syndicated feeds of the latest and most popular extensions. This is the way to get Firefox noticed - get syndicated content distributed around the web. I will certainly be syndicating the latest extensions, since I am still waiting for the update of several essential extensions, including Link Tool Bar, HTTP Headers, Tabbrowser Extensions and the Advanced Search Side Bar. The good news is that due to the re-location of the user profile directory, Firefox 0.8 can remain installed for the time being without any conflicts arising (of course can only run one or the other version at a time). Also, with the added benefit of a usable extension manager, I decided to dip my toes into a few other extensions, and Radial Context has become an immediate must have. I have been bred on mouse gestures ever since I first booted up Opera 6, so continue to use these while assigning radial context to the middle button for added pleasure.
Everything about the browser is smoother and more efficient on my grinding old Windows 98 PC and this has been further backed up by the release of Thunderbird 0.7. This email and news reader client seems to be catching up very quickly - I hadn't event got round to installing the previous version yet! This has already become my principle email client, in part due to the regular instability and crashing of MS Outlook (blame it on the OS and not the vendor no doubt!!) Plus a much smoother interface for archiving and retrieving the multitude of material that finds its way into my Inbox.
The last word must return to Firefox and where it all began. Have you noticed what that codename is for the version 1 milestone?
- 1. Mythological Bird. In ancient mythology, a bird resembling an eagle that lived for 500 years and then burned itself to death on a pyre from whose ashes another pheonix arose. It commonly appears in literature as a symbol of death and resurrection.
- 2. SB Or STH Beautiful Or Unique. A supremely beautiful, rare, or unique person or thing.
The Encarta Dictionary
The personification of a web browser!? I can handle that - after all I talk to my Firefox daily and praise her on her efforts!
Also relates to The Office
One of my many goals the past few weeks has been improving the automation of my office environment. A little example is the management of renewal dates and years of service for database records. There are enough features in Open Office to just enter the registration date for a new record and leave the rest to the system. The solutions I came up with are:
cell_service_yrs = CEILING(YEARFRAC(cell_register_date;TODAY());1) cell_renewal_date = DATE(YEAR(cell_register_date)+cell_service_yrs;MONTH(cell_register_date);DAY(cell_register_date))
Perhaps this is the same set of date functions available in Excel? I never really got to play with them before migrating to Open Office.
Ideally I would like to create a set of UDFs as an add-in module for the global library using Basic that could be plugged into this and other spreadsheets. Unfortunately there has not been the time to explore Open Office Basic yet! Here are some links if you are venturing down that path (and for my own future reference).
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