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Open for business, part 2

Despite having one of the most awkward names for a software product, the 2.0 release adds an improved, cleaner user interface and a built-in database.

The long-awaited version 2.0 of the OpenOffice.org suite is near. Despite having one of the most awkward names for a software product, the 2.0 release adds an improved, cleaner user interface and a built-in database.

Currently available in a 2.0 beta version, the OpenOffice.org suite is presented as a drop-in replacement for Microsoft Office. It provides many of the same features as Microsoft Office, and supports the Microsoft file formats. OpenOffice.org runs on Linux, Solaris, Windows, and Mac OS X. OpenOffice.org (the shorter name OpenOffice was already taken, so the .org part is necessary) provides a word processor, spreadsheet, presentation creator, database, drawing tool, math tool, and a version of the BASIC programming language you can use to create macros and other extensions. For working with BASIC, OpenOffice.org includes a comprehensive integrated development environment.

The 2.0 version supports by default a new set of file formats, called the OpenDocument formats (and standardized by OASIS >www.oasis-open.org

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