We have been witnessing a dynamic development of OpenOffice fork LibreOffice. We have seen numerous release ever since the productivity suite was announced. The Document Foundation (TDF) has now announced the availability of Beta 5 of version 3.4.
LibreOffice team has specifically mentioned the difference between its development with that of OpenOffice. "This is rather different from the past at OOo, where most of the development was happening inside a closed group, and the time based release model frequently slipped."
LibreOffice will get native support for the Global Menu, now a standard in the Ubuntu operating system.
Other new features which will come with this release include:
- New gradient / drop-shadow to highlight writer pages, with configurable colors in the options. To see simply start writer, and admire the prettier page / drop shadow.
- Support Color and line styles for the columns and footnote separator lines. This is improving the compatibility of LibreOffice with ODF.
- Add Greek Characters mode for bullets and numbering.
- The graphite smart font rendering support, has been completely rewritten to use a new faster graphite engine and is now more stable and at least 10 times faster. No changes are needed to existing fonts or documents. (Keith Stribley, Martin Hosken, SIL International).
Beta 5 is not meant for general purpose usage. However, if you want to test and try it, you can download the Beta 5 from this link.