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Open Office is an open source office suite built mainly for businesses who need to manage their documents. There are many different tools included in the package, all of which we’re going to talk about on this page. Using this one package, you’ll be able to manage all aspects of your business – ranging from reports and spreadsheets to presentations.
Open Office is an application that was originally created back in 2002. At that time, the only office suite that was being used was Microsoft Office, a product that the majority of the people today already know about. The problem is that it wasn’t available for everyone – the high licensing costs meant that only large businesses and individuals with cash to spare could invest in it. This meant that small businesses were left at a disadvantage, so the release of this product helped to even the playing field and gave them the same opportunity without having to pay for it.
The software is completely open source, which for those of who don’t know already, means that the source code is freely distributed alongside the application allowing anyone with development or technical experience to explore into it and even contribute to features. This is completely different to ordinary development where people are paid to work on it and nobody else is allowed to see the inner workings. This is a much better approach because as more people can contribute, it means more features can be added and greater input can be added to make sure it’s exactly as people are looking for.
It wasn’t originally known under this name, though. The original program was created by a company called StarDivision, under the name StarOffice. In 1999 a very large company named Sun Microsystems (which a lot of people are sure to have heard of) took over StarDivision and therefore was in control of the office package too. It was at this time that they decided to create an open source project and rename it to what we know it as today. This was one of the first projects of its time, attempting to replicate the great success of the open source Linux operating system that had worked well under this system.
In more recent history, Oracle then gained control of the software for a brief time in 2010 until they decided to stop the development of it themselves. They had no choice but to find someone else to run it for them, which in this case was Apache Incubator. This is who the project is currently managed by, although all development of it comes from the thousands of developers around the world who have chosen to contribute over the years. This remains as one of the biggest worldwide projects on the internet today, even though replicas such as LibreOffice have started to appear.