Discovering the New Features of 3.0

The release of 3.0 delivers a lot of improvements: more user-friendliness, full tables support in Impress, a better cropping tool in Draw, vastly improved Notes in Writer, Calc gets more muscle, and more.
Posted December 17, 2008

Eric Geier

Eric Geier

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Just after our how-to series on (OOo) wrapped up, OOo 3.0 was officially released--more specifically, on Oct 13, 2008. Most of the tips and tricks covered in the series, based on version 2.4, will still apply. Though there's a big jump in the version number, there's not a huge difference in the office suite. However, as you can guess, there have been some improvements. This tutorial will introduce you to some of the new features and functionality. Now let's get started!

Start center and new look and feel welcomes you to OOo

The changes made from OOo 2.4 to 3.0 aren't as all eye popping like from the changes Microsoft made from Office 2003 to Office 2007. OOo 3.0 still has the traditional file menus and toolbars--no Ribbon here. The open source developers madeover many toolbar icons to give them a more modern look. Plus when OOo is opened without a document, a start center (see Figure 1) is displayed instead of a blank application. This center makes the office suite a bit more user friendly and inviting. You can hit the buttons to start or open documents, manage templates, or browse Extensions.

Installs on Mac OS X (without X11)

Though you could install OOo on Mac OS X machines in the past, you could only do it with help from X11. This is an implementation of the X Window System, that makes it possible to run X11-based applications in Mac OS X. Starting with OOo 3.0, you can install the suite without this dependency.

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Tags: open source, Microsoft, IT, Mac, OS X

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