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The Document Foundation (TDF), the charitable entity behind the world’s leading free office suite LibreOffice, seeks for companies to

develop the base framework for an Android version of LibreOffice with basic editing capabilities

to start work as soon as possible.

TDF currently plans to invest into getting LibreOffice, its free office suite, to mobile Android devices like tablets and smartphones, extending the existing desktop version of the software. For the volunteer community and the ecosystem to work on concrete features and an enduser-ready version that can be published, a base framework including the LibreOffice program modules Writer, Calc, Impress, Draw and Math is required. TDF seeks for companies to deliver this as a turnkey project until the end of February 2015.

Experience with the LibreOffice source code, mobile development on Android, as well as managing development projects and interacting with an international open source community is required. Current engagement and involvement in the community is highly appreciated.

Based on the technical design decisions that have already been taken during the basic implementation of a LibreOffice viewer for Android, which is built on the Mozilla for Android framework, the project includes, amongst other items, the following work packages. It is targetted towards basic framework and integration tasks to provision for basic editing capabilities:

1.) infrastructure

  • integration of on-screen keyboard that is only visible in editing mode
  • routing Android events to LibreOffice app
  • performance considerations
  • triggering updates of views
  • rendering and invalidation of tiles
  • insertion and deletion of content
  • threading

2.) selections (everything to be done in a separate layer)

  • texts and lists
  • tables for Writer and Impress
  • tables for Calc
  • pictures and shapes
  • support for OpenGL
  • rendering of selections on overlays
  • routing of application information from the program module’s core

3.) touch user interface for basic editing (based on Android design standards)

  • toolbar with basic controls, like bold, italics and underlined
  • context menu
  • menu items
  • deleting selections
  • loading and saving of documents
  • jointly working with our volunteer UX and design team for design considerations

4.) cloud storage and e-mail

  • provide basic interface for the community and ecosystem participants to develop integration of their preferred cloud storage
  • e-mail integration for sending documents via Android framework

Applicants are expected to include required project management as well as required writing of detailed specifications in their bid.

Note that the nightly builds at http://dev-builds.libreoffice.org/daily/master/Android-ARM@24-Bytemark-Hosting/ will not (!) be used as technical platform for this project. Instead, the technical platform will be the work that is currently carried out for having a LibreOffice viewer for Android, which is built on the Mozilla for Android framework, with source code available at core/android/experimental/LOAndroid3 in the public git master repository.

LibreOffice development is based mainly on C++ and C, as well as some Python and Java code. We exclusively use free, libre and open source (FLOSS) software for development whereever possible.

Previous experience with such tasks is highly suggested, given the complexity of the project. Communication on the project will happen exclusively in English language. Some fixed availability is required to coordinate with the developer community, which is mostly based in Europe (UTC+1 timezone).

The task offered is a project-based one-off, with no immediate plans to a mid- or long-term contractual relationship. It is offered on a freelance, project basis. Companies applying can be located anywhere in the world.

Applications from bidding groups are welcome, so are bids on individual work packages. Companies with certified LibreOffice developers are preferred over other applicants.

A timing and cost estimation for

  • the additional work leading to a fully-fledged Android version,
  • with full editing capabilities,
  • a fully-fledged touch user interface with more controls, based on input from our volunteer UX and design team,
  • available at Google Play (taking the 50 MB size limit into account, providing mechanism for downloading missing components),

built on the framework outlined before, are welcome.

TDF is looking forward to receiving your applications, including company presentation, your financial expectations (name the final price for the turnkey project), and the earliest date of your availability, via e-mail to Florian Effenberger atfloeff@documentfoundation.org no later than October 6, 2014. You can encrypt your message via PGP/GnuPG.

Applicants who have not received feedback by October 31, 2014 should consider their application has not been accepted.

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