Calligra 2.6 Released

The Calligra team is proud and pleased to announce the release of version 2.6 of the Calligra Suite, Calligra Active and the Calligra Office Engine. This version is the result of thousands of commits which provide new features, polishing of the user interaction and bug fixes.

As usual, Calligra is developing very fast and there are a lot of new features to be announced. This is also the second feature update after the initial release of Calligra in April last year which means that we are approaching some form of maturity. The team has used a significant part of the development time to polish away usability problems and visual glitches.

News in This Release

Here are the most important new or improved features in Calligra 2.6.

  1. New Application: Calligra Author
  2. Productivity Applications
  3. Artistic Applications
  4. Supported Document Formats
  5. Common Improvements
  6. Other Than the Desktop
  7. Try It Out

New Application: Calligra Author

Calligra AuthorCalligra Author is a new member of the growing Calligra application family. The application was announced just after the release of Calligra 2.5 with the following description:

The application will support a writer in the process of creating an eBook from concept to publication. We have two user categories in particular in mind:

  • Novelists who produce long texts with complicated plots involving many characters and scenes but with limited formatting.
  • Textbook authors who want to take advantage of the added possibilities in eBooks compared to paper-based textbooks.

The first version of Calligra Author is very similar to Calligra Words since the new features of Author are also adopted by Words. Future releases shall deviate more.

Features that were developed especially for Author include export to eBook formats EPUB2 and MOBI (the latter will come a bit delayed, in 2.6.1), and improved text statistics (word count, character count, etc).

Productivity Applications

For the productivity part of the suite (word processor, spreadsheet, and presentation program) the target user of version 2.6 is still the student or academic user. This version has a number of new features that will make it more suitable for these users.

Words, the word processing application improved layout and numerous minor fixes in dialogs and tools, e.g. the spell checking. This should make Words more pleasant to use for the normal user. Words also enjoys the same features as Author: improved text statistics and export to eBook formats.

Statistics support in Calligra Words 2.6

Statistics support in Calligra Words 2.6

Sheets, the spreadsheet application, has a new function optimizer – also known as a Solver. All standard scripts are available for translation.

Stage, the presentation program, has a new animation framework that lets the user create and manipulate animations in slide shows.

Flow, the diagram application, has improved connections.

Plan, the project management application, has updated scheduling information, improved scheduling granularity, improved performance charts, improved project creation, improved usability in the report generator and many bug fixes.

Kexi, the visual database creator, has new support for user data storage, improved CSV import and export and improved table views. Overwriting objects with the same name is now possible. Detailed lists of changes for Kexi are available here.

Text trimming in tables - Kexi 2.6

Text trimming in tables – Kexi 2.6

Artistic Applications

The artistic applications of the Calligra Suite are the most mature ones and are already used by professional users everywhere.

Krita, the drawing application, has new support for OpenColorIO, which makes it suitable for use in the movie industry. It also has big speedups in many places, including the vc library and when painting using the new precision slider in the preset editor.

Screenshot of Krita 2.6 alpha

Setting Exposure on a HDR image with Krita 2.6′s new OpenColorIO based LUT docker

There is also improvements in painting HDR images and integration into a GFX workflow as well as support for the latest OpenRaster standard and many bug fixes.

A full description of Krita is available as a PDF booklet. More screenshots can also be downloaded.

Supported Document Formats

Calligra 2.6 can now export documents to EPUB2 format. In 2.6.1 it will also be able to export to MOBI format.

And of course support for all MS Office formats has been improved even more, especially for the MS Open XML formats of MS Office 2007 and above.

Common Improvements

The architecture of the Calligra Suite lets the applications share much of the functionality of the suite with each other. Many common parts have seen improvements since the release of 2.5. Here are a few of them.

Calligra will now load and save 3D shapes and annotations. This means better interoperability with other office applications even if Calligra can not show them at this time.

Charts have a number of improvements for fine tuning the formatting. Examples include fonts for titles and labels and markers for data sets.

Mathematical formulas have an improved rendering.

Other Than the Desktop

Calligra Active, the version for tablets and smartphones, has several improvements: there is a new slide chooser for presentations, slides can be changed by flicking the device, page switching improvements for text documents and improved start up sequences including a new splash screen.

There is also a  new preview for text documents, a new text search feature for all 3 document formats, support for translations, a simplified UI and some bug fixes. And, naturally, Calligra Active also benefits from all the improvements in the common parts of Calligra: the libraries and plugins.

Try It Out

  • The source code is available for download: calligra-2.6.0.tar.bz2. As far as we are aware, the following distributions package Calligra 2.6. This information will be updated when we get more details. In addition, many distributions will package and ship Calligra 2.6 as part of their standard set of applications.
  • In Chakra Linux, Calligra is the default office suite so you don’t have to do anything at all to try out Calligra.  Chakra aims to be a showcase Linux for the “Elegance of the Plasma Desktop” and other KDE software.
  • Users of Ubuntu and Kubuntu are urged to try the daily snapshots prepared by Project Neon. Paste the following in a terminal window and you’ll find Calligra installed in /opt:
    sudo add-apt-repository ppa:neon/ppa \
    && sudo apt-get update\
    && sudo apt-get install project-neon-base \
       project-neon-calligra \
       project-neon-calligra-dbg

    You can run these packages by adding /opt/project-neon/bin to your PATH.

  • Arch Linux provides Calligra packages in the [kde-unstable] repository.
  • Fedora packages are available in the rawhide development repository (http://fedoraproject.org/wiki/Rawhide), and unofficial builds are available for prior releases from kde-unstable repository at http://kde-redhat.sourceforge.net/ .
  • There are OpenSUSE Calligra packages in the unstable playground repository.
  • Calligra FreeBSD ports are available in Area51.
  • MS Windows packages will be available from KO GmbH. For download of Windows binaries, use the download page.
  • Mac OS X: We would welcome volunteers who want to build and publish packages for the Calligra Suite on OS X.

About Calligra

Calligra, comprising the Calligra Suite, Calligra Active and the Calligra Office Engine, is part of the applications from the KDE community. See more information at the website http://www.calligra.org.

This entry was posted in Announcements, Calligra Stable, News. Bookmark the permalink.

39 Responses to Calligra 2.6 Released

  1. eyome says:

    Hi,

    It seems there are a lot of improvements with this release.
    Why you don’t talk about Chakra in your “Try it out” section, in my knowledge, this the only one distro which has Calligra by default, what a pity there are not more spotlight on it…I know you can’t talk about all distros, but…Calligra is installed by default ! :)
    Thank your for your work.

  2. Mark says:

    Still no ability to open or import an epub file even in author ?

  3. Nick says:

    Were there any improvements to “Styles” in Words?

  4. Matthias Mailänder says:

    I am going to try to update https://build.opensuse.org/package/show?package=calligra&project=KDE%3ADistro%3AFactory I suggest you link to http://software.opensuse.org/package/calligra tho show all calligra versions from various repositories. The KDE unstable repository on OBS is just git snapshots from pre 2.6.0 currently.

  5. Blask says:

    can this version export to MS Office formats

  6. vasu says:

    Doesn’t matter how many features ( read bloat) you keep tagging on- if basic problems aren’t fixed, no one will use this s/w. The long standing fonts issue has NOT been fixed – who in their right mind will use this for desktop publishing/word processing/spreadsheets when it cannot even handle fonts properly ? Blaming Qt will not help- results matter. If necessary, fix Qt upstream.

    • Inge Wallin says:

      Actually most people don’t experience the font problem any more. What system are you running?

      • vasu says:

        opensuse 12.2 with kde 4.10, xorg from repo and kernel 3.7.

        The fonts look ugly- even a cheap smartphone looks better. The solution to disable hinting was laughable. Thats not a solution – at best its a transparent cheat.

        I want to make calligra my default as I run KDE. But everytime, after opening one doc, I am reminded of this problem. What bothers me is that KDE developers are simply whitewashing this, much as they are doing with many long standing bugs.

        I created a bug report for KDE wallet not saving changed passwords years ago- this worked in 3.5 but NEVER since KDE 4 ! No one seems bothered to fix something as important as this.

        • Friedrich says:

          See, this I why learned coding, to help myself. Instead of having to stamp helplessly on the ground or some web page, or having blame others for not spending their life just to serve me.
          Just like I learned reading, writing and calculating.
          You can do as well. Takes time. But so did learning to read, write and calculate.
          Start now. Do like everyone who worked on Calligra so far. Scratch your itch. Everyone already scratches theirs.

        • jstaniek says:

          @vasu please show your screenshot explaining the problem. I have to assure you that KDE Wallet has nothing to do with the font hinting, so it is better not to mix these two separate things in the same post.

  7. Michael O. says:

    Are you guys going to put Calligra Active 2.6 on Google Play Store for Android tablets?

    • Inge Wallin says:

      Android is a tricky beast to support due to some limitations in the platform (mostly number of libraries). But pepole are working on it and my money is on “yes” for some unspecified time in the future.

  8. Sarah says:

    What about support for epub3?

    • Inge Wallin says:

      Epub3 is huge so we won’t be able to support all of it for a long time. However, selected parts of epub3 is already being developed. Support for multimedia, audio and video, is already in the code for 2.7 and support for MathML, i.e. mathematical formulas, will also come in 2.7 if nothing strange happens.

  9. Bogdan says:

    “Arch Linux provides Calligra packages in the [kde-unstable] repository.” – is a false statement.

    These packages are provided in the Extra repository, see: https://www.archlinux.org/groups/x86_64/calligra/

    Please, correct this. Thanks.

  10. Kenny says:

    I’m not sure how Calligra Author is supposed to work. I installed this on Arch, but when I open up the Calligra Author menu entry, I just get the option to create a fax document, colorful text document, or a professional letter. I don’t see anything obvious on how this is supposed to help someone create/organize a book. I haven’t seen any Calligra Author screenshots, so I have no idea if I’m missing something.

  11. Rajendra says:

    I just have few (debatable) things to reiterate.

    1. The way I see it fair amount of emaphsis is regularly placed on interoperability. Being a wellwisher I feel that once real world requirements are fulfilled you will have millions of adapters and probably have difficult time browsing through the naive descriptions of bugs filed by novice users. You guys are yet to go through such phase and such a task can be moved high in your vision otherwise you will have to contend with few thousand users. Probably calligra (or linux as a whole) has serious potential in emerging markets but interoperability has to be overcome. If you have good importers, some efforts can be made by using gsoc as a platform after attempting some prototype. I feel that it may turn out to be an optimisations problem.

    2. I was not able to dig out track changing feature in word/author. Is it still disabled?

  12. TK says:

    I really want to like Calligra. I really do. But its first impression kills everything. What do you see after starting e.g. Calligra Author? Right – one giant, nearly empty window that lets you choose to open a document or create a new one from a template. This behaviour is present since ages and it makes such a bad impression… sigh

    First world problems for geeks & nerds like us but a showstopper for ordinary users.

    • Kenny says:

      That’s what I’m talking about. How are you supposed to use Calligra Author to create a book when after you first fire it up it looks just like Calligra Words, with no direction on how to actually use it to work on a book? Where are the actually Calligra Author tools actually located?

  13. Rajendra says:

    3. I could not access google online document from calligra word. I am using internet in a proxy environment.

  14. Paweł says:

    I stiil have a problem with coding in rtf files. Instead of polish letters like: ż, ą, ę, ł, ó, ń, ć, ś, I get something like sl#@d, shoud be skąd and it happens to every word containing polish letters. Trying to change font, doesn’t help. No mater which distro I use (Chakra, Kubuntu) this problem i still out there.

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  16. cirehawk says:

    I, like others, have wanted to like this since the KOffice days but for various reasons (crashes, quirkiness, etc.) have always had to stick with LibreOffice. Version 2.6 seems to be a step in the right direction, so I’m going to give it a good try. One issue I’ve already noticed (not sure if it’s a Calligra problem or overall KDE problem) has to do with printing. When printing a document there is no way (or I haven’t found it at least) to change the print quality. Everything just prints out in draft quality. As I said, this very well could be a limitation of the KDE print manager but it’s definitely a problem either way.

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  21. mythus says:

    The largest thing that keeps me from being able to use Calligra is the lack-luster tables support in Words.

    I need to make tables that actually work, are configurable, and look nice. LO allows me to. MS Office allows me to. Heck, simply editors for web sites allow me to.

    Yet in Calligra Words tables are super basic. You can’t color the background of rows or cells. You can’t seem to change the line style of the cells. Heck, you can’t even move from cell to cell within a Words table easily using TAB key.

    Words tables should be at least comparable to LO Writer tables. A good idea might be to use Calligra Sheets as the backbone of Calligra Words Tables.

    Here’s hoping that the next release will finally make this happen. Everything else so far looks great. Krita is awesome, and the whole layout idea of Calligra apps is something I really like.

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