LibreOffice Developer Glimpse Proves Balance

Florian Effenberger recently posted statistics of the number of developers contributing to the LibreOffice project. Several months ago, Cedric Bosdonnat offered data on the number of contribution and contributors from the various sources. While Effenberger's post provides much less detail, it still provides a glimpse into the composition of the growing community.

According to commit counts it seems 54 developers from Oracle, everybody's favorite bad guy these days, has the highest employee count. This was a full 18% of all commits. As Italo Vignoli explained, "Oracle contributions are related to the OOo code that has been merged with LibreOffice, and in fact the number of commits has decreased dramatically during the last few months. There are, though, some former Oracle developers contributing on a volunteer basis to LibreOffice."

SUSE is next with 20 employees making contributions giving them 6.7% of commits. Known contributors follows with 3% from 9 contributors. Known contributors are those with a history of developing for and LibreOffice but not working on the behalf of or representing any known employer.


Next up is Canonical with 4 contributors making up 1.3 % of contributions. This is up from the one employee sharing two patches tallied in March. In response to criticism of Canonical, Vignoli was quick to point out that "Bjoern Michaelsen has been one of the most active ones since he has joined Canonical from Oracle in February, and is a key member of the ESC."

Red Hat and SIL employ two developers that contribute to LibreOffice making up .7% of contributions each. Several other firms provide .3% through one developer.

However, the largest number, equaling more than double all those listed so far with 68.3% of commits from 205 contributors, is attributed to the great Unknown. This most likely is comprised of independent volunteers, many of which who work on easier tasks and are getting comfortable with the source code. Vignoli said that some come and go, and then come back again as time and other commitments allow.

This small snapshot only provides a small look into the world of LibreOffice. More graphs and numbers are promised in August and with the release of LibreOffice 3.4.2. The main take-away from this graph is, as Florian Effenberger said, "it becomes obvious that the developer community is indeed well balanced between company-sponsored contributors and independent community volunteers."

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