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When will Libreoffice Calc do XYZ aka "Surface" chart?

asked 2018-08-30 06:09:14 +0100

Joachim Otahal gravatar image

updated 2018-08-30 08:41:50 +0100

kompilainenn gravatar image

See Bug id 51760, That function is important and a reason why many cannot use LO (and OpenOffice and Staroffice). Microsoft Excel can do it since 1992. Such a surface plot is needed in serious business more often than you think.

Please don't give me the typical "is a community driven project" rhetoric response, the community resources are IMHO wasted on button redesign (several times) instead of taking care of functionality.

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Due to judging the topic being relevant, I voted the question up again balancing the previous (-1) by someone else.
The term "rhetoric reponse" didn't look too offensive to me. And after all it's human to err.
However, feature request are to be filed to wit Importance set to enhancement.

Lupp gravatar imageLupp ( 2018-08-30 10:58:24 +0100 )edit

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answered 2018-08-30 08:24:24 +0100

Mike Kaganski gravatar image

updated 2018-08-30 08:30:33 +0100

You have answered yourself, like it or no. You only think "is a community driven project" is a "rhetoric response" because you imagine that a community-driven project is the one where there are "community resources" patiently and humbly waiting when some benevolent power directs them to a chosen task, and then they immediately start implementing it like slaves. No, it's not like that. "Community-driven" allows developers to choose what they want to work on; just like nobody tells you coming here which question to ask, the same way nobody in the community tells a developer what to work on (except the developer's paying customers). So volunteer developers come and work on what they want/like; and commercial developers/companies work on what customers tell them.

TDF itself has very limited resources (it's funded by sponsors and donations), and from those funds, it starts tenders from time to time, to implement some features which stay without developers' attention for long, but have high user demand. Lately there have been tenders to move from HSQLDB to Firebird DB (to decrease Java dependency), image handling rework, SVG handling, and accessibility improvements. And of course, being community-driven, the scope of the tenders are also chosen by community, i.e., by those members who express their ideas on e.g. ESC meetings (where any member can join and add an item to discuss, not only ESC members).

So - if it happens that your pet project does not get due attention from your PoV, one thing you can do is to start contributing to LO, then become a member, then try to convince others it's a thing worth of spending TDF money for. Or you could hire someone to implement. Or try to convince someone that it would be interesting for that someone. Or just wait until someone decides and implements when that someone decides.

And no, there are no other schedules for features except those of the tenders.

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@Mike Kaganski I knew what you wrote, but I could not have put it that nice. +1 vote

ebot gravatar imageebot ( 2018-08-30 08:35:47 +0100 )edit

answered 2018-08-30 10:49:44 +0100

Lupp gravatar image

(This is mostly a comment on the other contributions here, but it should also add some aspects, though from a much lower level of being informed.)

We were reminded that a predominantly community-driven project cannot be steered in a way commercial development may be. In our case specifically the main commercial competitor MS can steer - and will not aim for better software by that, but for more profit and power. They also easily can afford to hire some dozen experts for a sub-project.

What I missed was an allusion to the fact that volunteers not only will just work on subjects they like, but also should only work on topics they have sufficient knowledge of.

Surface modelling and graphing is mainly a mathematical topic on the level of applicable algorithms. Of course, also MS don't need to develop the related math anew. It's long known - and "sponsored" by the public system of education and the worldwide network of scientists, not paid for by MS.

However, mathematically interested people also competent in programming and willing to contribute to an open and free software project, may prefer to put their efforts into something like R (statistical) or (wx)Maxima or GnuPlot or ... (even gaming) rather than into dull spreadsheet software since decades bound to bad decisions now blocking promising development. (For payment some do without asking.)

The one tiny improvement I was involved in by suggesting a different mathematical approach, but where I refused to tamper with the source code, was finally implemented by a chemist (if I remember correctly).

Thus: A campaign to improve existing functions and tools from the mathematical domain should act "think big". It's not about fixing a mishap here and adding a pretty feature there. It should be about incorporating mathematics into Calc not only aiming for new features, but also for means to fix issues with existing tools and functions. That might be a venture also challenging high-level contributors to existing mathematical projects. Why shouldn't spreadsheets first be enabled to act as an interface to open free mathematical software like (e.g.) wxMaxima already containg in turn the link to GnuPlot (and other already mentioned), and later (a) tailored, reduced version(s) (subset of features/modules) of that/these softwares be directly integrated into LibO?

For a recent discussion about a related topic see: . (I stepped in there with the 11th post.)

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answered 2018-08-30 07:58:36 +0100

ebot gravatar image

updated 2018-08-30 08:18:07 +0100

Hi Joachim, thanks for your contribution. Unfortunately you are wrong here with your issue, sorry. This is a forum user help user. If you have a suggestion, you can enter it directly at Bugzilla or you write to the "The Document Foundation":

You can confirm the bug in Bugzilla. The more you do, the greater the chance that it will be done.

Thank you for your understanding and good luck.

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Than you for your answer. I see, it is the wrong place. Maybe you know an interface or plugin to i.e. gnuplot?

Joachim Otahal gravatar imageJoachim Otahal ( 2018-08-31 15:35:35 +0100 )edit
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Asked: 2018-08-30 06:09:14 +0100

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