AbiWord v3.0.0 Released!

October 13th, 2013

In addition to hundreds of bug fixes, AbiWord v3.0.0 contains a number of exciting new features.

We'd like to thank all the developers, translators, users, testers, and everyone else who have spent so much of their free time on improving AbiWord. Thanks for making this great release possible!

This documents will encompass all the changes from the 2.9.x development releases:

Unicode Support for Windows

AbiWord 3.0.0 becomes the first release of AbiWord having the complete native Unicode support for Windows. This finally allows Windows users, from Windows 2000 onwards, to run AbiWord having the interface in their native or favorite language.

Figure 1: AbiWord on Windows in the Arabic Language

Paragraph Borders and Shading Support

AbiWord now supports adding borders around paragraphs and giving them a background color. This can be controlled using a new Borders and Shading dialog. Figure 2 shows this new Borders and Shading dialog.

Figure 2: Adding borders and shading to a paragraph

Improved Localizations

AbiWord 3.0.0 also comes with much improved localizations for many languages. The enthusiasm shown by the translators and localization experts has improved many existing localizations to AbiWord. The status of the translations can be seen on our AbiWord translation pages for both this developer release, and the official stable AbiWord release.

RDF Support in both OpenDocument (.odt) and AbiWord (.abw) files

The Resource Description Framework (RDF) is the base layer of the Semantic Web. RDF allows the meaning of things to be specified in a manner that a computer can understand. Including RDF in documents opens the door for AbiWord to know that "Fred" is a person with a specific phone number and entry in your mail client contacts. If you are meeting at the "Town Hall" then AbiWord can know which one, that it is a reference to a building, and the exact location of the Hall you mean. This allows a document to be comprised of not only text and style information but also to make the semantics of the text available to the computer so it can offer you help.

Initial support for RDF in 3.0.0 allows RDF information to be saved and loaded in both OpenDocument (.odt) and AbiWord (.abw) files. A developer API is available for RDF now as well.

Our thanks go out to the NLnet Foundation, a strong and dedicated supporter of open standards, for supporting this work.

A Telepathy Backend for the Collaboration Plugin

AbiWord's collaboration plugin gained the ability to share documents with contacts using Telepathy. That means you can collaborate over the internet in real-time with anyone that has a Jabber/XMPP account. Telepathy can support many more IM networks, so look out for your favorite network soon.

We'd like to say a big thank you to Collabora for helping out during the creation of this backend and providing the needed server infrastructure. Thanks also go out to the NLnet Foundation for providing the support and funding to make this happen.

Figure 3: Sharing a document has never been so simple

An Experimental EPUB Plugin

A new experimental EPUB plugin allows the creation of EPUB 2.0.1 documents directly from AbiWord. EPUB files are better known as e-Books, or digital books. Also it allows user to edit existing EPUB files using AbiWord.

Figure 4: Book reader Calibre with an EPUB document opened that was generated by the Abiword

Windows 64 bit Support

AbiWord 3.0.0 also comes with support for the 64 bit version of Windows. At the moment we do not provide a 64 bit installer for Windows yet, but everything is in place now to be able to do that in the future.

Gtk3 port

On Unix AbiWord 3.0.0 will now run with Gtk3. Gtk2 is still supported via a build time option

Other improvements

AbiWord 3.0.0 also offer the following set of improvements

  • Double-buffering for most of the drawing to reduce flickering
  • Implement SVG snapshots for components when possible
  • Enhancements to the Mac OSX port, albeit not enough for having it included in this release.
  • Allow SPARQL Query execution on RDF metadata stored in documents
  • Fixes with tables spanning multiple pages.
  • RTF fixes: crashes with lists, annotations, frames.
  • Various Gtk fixes
  • MS Write import: codepage conversions.
  • OpenDocument fixes: crashers, file format conformance, frames.
  • Localizations fixes and update for 60+ languages.