Next LibreOffice version will be 7.6

Italo Vignoli italo at
Tue Apr 11 13:30:27 UTC 2023

Based on the following ESC meeting discussion:

+ got marketing to announce what is the next major version on their 
mailing list
   + some discussion on switching to year.month scheme
   + extension compat checks might be affected
   + generator version in odf files
   + perhaps disentangle internal, strictly monotonically increasing 
numbers, from outside marketing release name?
   + just a single increment, for the internal number? then go for 
date-based release
   + going for year-num, loses some marketing splash
   + then leave it to marketing, to decide - at least no technical blockers

and on the following additional info from team members:

* rather switch to scheme like Ubuntu
   + changing to that is feasible for spring release as long as versions 
can be compared numerically
   * update-check doesn't use version numbers but git-hash
   * appstores can use completely independent version numbers/version codes
   * download pages are controlled by us/we can use whatever
   * build process/code doesn't care itself but some scripts around that 
will need updating, but certainly not a huge effort (only LO parts that 
need changing is the about-dialogs / minor things that show the version 
or when passing the version to web-help)
   * e.g. bugzilla notifications, tools that work on branch-names or 
similar needs adjustments in addition
   * FOSDEM/spring gives more time to prepare artwork, etc

The decision is to stay with the current 7.x family, and call the next 
version - due in August - LibreOffice 7.6.

At the same time, announce that this will be the last version following 
the "old" numbering scheme, without providing clues for the following 
numbering scheme (which will be based on the year.month paradigm).

Just a couple of notes from the previous discussion:

1. LibreOffice is a commodity because office suites are a commodity, and 
LibreOffice is an office suite. The fact that community members do not 
perceive LibreOffice as a commodity does not affect the market around us 
and especially market analysts, who are the reference for large users 
(some of which pay a substantial amount of LibreOffice development 
through ecosystem companies).

2. Please remember that community members count for a tiny percentage of 
LibreOffice users, and are not affecting in any way the perception of 
the majority of users (who have been mis-informed and mis-educated by a 
single company for at least 40 years, based on a strategy which at the 
time it started was clear only to the evil genius of Bill Gates).

3. Marketing is a profession as much as development is a profession (and 
of course other tasks such as design, localization, quality assurance, 
and many others) and has to be respected and trusted.

4. The time when marketing was a task for secretaries or CEO's mistress 
(met several of them during my professiona life) is gone since the 80s 
and will never be back.

5. People who never contribute to mailing list discussions about 
marketing decisions with constructive inputs - actually, most of them 
are never contributing with any input - but are then extremely quick in 
criticizing any marketing decision are warmly invited to start counting 
up to (one quadrillion) before writing their next 
useless comment (even if they are contributing in a significant way to 
other areas of the prokect).

Best regards, Italo
Italo Vignoli - LibreOffice Marketing & PR
mobile/signal +39.348.5653829 - email italo at
hangout/jabber italo.vignoli at
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