Feeds

OpenOfficers pitch Oracle on life after Sun

Microsoft-Office gambit played

Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction

OpenOfficers have begun lobbying for their future in the event that Oracle succeeds in purchasing Sun Microsystems.

Advocates have been pressing the case for ramping up commitment to OpenOffice and for spinning it out as an independent, legal entity with ownership of trademarks and copyright free of Oracle's control.

OpenOffice is the open-source desktop productivity suite project started by Sun, which remains the project's biggest single contributor. Sun has also saddled employees with OpenOffice over the years, mandating the document and presentation software is its corporate standard.

In an open letter to Oracle's chief executive Larry Ellison one author has called on Ellison to invest in certification and improved sales support for OpenOffice to help take on Microsoft's dominant Office.

Solveig Haugland, author of the OpenOffice.org Guidebook and owner of GetOpenOffice.org, has written: "You know the massive amounts of partner and corporate revenue that comes not just from selling the product but from associated services and add-on products. (The certification program alone generates a decent chunk of change.) So you know that getting a bigger market share for OpenOffice.org would be a nice benefit to Oracle."

John McCreesh, OpenOffice's head of marketing, is veering towards independence, though. He said separately he felt the "right model" is for an independent legal entity to own the trademarks and have joint copyright of the code, with its own finance and governance.

Oracle's not said what its plans are for OpenOffice. At a Sun-employee-only town hall last week, Oracle's president Charles Phillips said he could not comment on what the database giant has in store for any of Sun's product lines or projects.

Playing the Microsoft-Office competitive angle in Oracle's face is unlikely to work, though. Oracle has tried to take on Office in years past with its Collaboration Suite, which now appears not to exist. That was in Ellison's more red-meat-eating, going-after-Microsoft days.

Oracle was not the first to try and take on Office and fail, and it will likely be unwilling to make the kind of strategic and material commitment such a fight would demand to get OpenOffice up to speed technically against Office and make potential partners take it seriously.

OpenOffice lags Office considerably in functionality, plug-in support, and partner backing. Version 3.1 does promise some refinements but delivery appears to be slipping. Due this month, the final release dates have been pushed back with nothing now expected until May 7 at the earliest.

Better to take the McCreesh approach, of spinning out OpenOffice where the community can take up the burden and continue waging the current fight. OpenOffice is nibbling away at Microsoft having been adopted by IBM, Red Hat, and Novell in selected engagements, rather than repeating the kind of broad-fronted and destined-to-fail battle against Microsoft of years' past. ®

Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction

More from The Register

next story
This time it's 'Personal': new Office 365 sub covers just two devices
Redmond also brings Office into Google's back yard
Oh no, Joe: WinPhone users already griping over 8.1 mega-update
Hang on. Which bit of Developer Preview don't you understand?
Microsoft lobs pre-release Windows Phone 8.1 at devs who dare
App makers can load it before anyone else, but if they do they're stuck with it
Half of Twitter's 'active users' are SILENT STALKERS
Nearly 50% have NEVER tweeted a word
Internet-of-stuff startup dumps NoSQL for ... SQL?
NoSQL taste great at first but lacks proper nutrients, says startup cloud whiz
Ditch the sync, paddle in the Streem: Upstart offers syncless sharing
Upload, delete and carry on sharing afterwards?
New Facebook phone app allows you to stalk your mates
Nearby Friends feature goes live in a few weeks
Microsoft TIER SMEAR changes app prices whether devs ask or not
Some go up, some go down, Redmond goes silent
Batten down the hatches, Ubuntu 14.04 LTS due in TWO DAYS
Admins dab straining server brows in advance of Trusty Tahr's long-term support landing
prev story

Whitepapers

SANS - Survey on application security programs
In this whitepaper learn about the state of application security programs and practices of 488 surveyed respondents, and discover how mature and effective these programs are.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Top three mobile application threats
Learn about three of the top mobile application security threats facing businesses today and recommendations on how to mitigate the risk.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.