Collabora Office 23.05.6 Introduces STYLEREF and Advanced Header/Footer Functionality

Our latest and greatest version of Collabora Office is now ready for your document editing needs. Bringing ever-increasing interoperability with Microsoft Office, further advanced options for floating frames, headers and footers, STYLEREF fields and more, your favourite open-source document editor just got better!

Support of STYLEREF fields in Writer

STYLEREF fields allow users to automatically insert the content of a heading or style into another part of the document. This feature is used to create dynamic headers or footers that automatically update based on changes in the document.

For example, if you have a document with multiple headings, you can use STYLEREF to insert the text of a specific heading into the header or footer. If the content of that heading changes, the STYLEREF field will automatically update to reflect the new content.

Improved support of floating frames in Writer

Part of the openDesk project, this new feature – first brought in for the 23.05 release – has now been thoroughly work-hardened after much testing and fixing of any issues that arose. Being crash tested against more than 800,000 files, there are currently no known crashes related to this feature. 36 community bug reports have been resolved, and the Insert Frame dialog now includes the option to ‘allow frame to split across pages’, as well as being able to turn a floating table into an inline one using a new menu item.

Insert Frame dialog now includes the option at the bottom to ‘Allow frame to split across pages’
Turn a floating table into an inline one, using a new menu item
Behaviour of floating tables in Collabora Office now fully mirrors that in Microsoft Word

 

First page header and footer

Useful to those of us who use frequently use or create legal documents, booklets, leaflets, and more, Collabora Office now supports separate first page, left page, and right page header and footer content under one page style.

Header and footer content for first, left and right pages can be independently edited

23.05.6 now imports and supports many additional pages styles, for example only first page headers and footers enabled, or only left and right enabled. Whilst much of this functionality has existed in Collabora Office for some time, this latest update, as part of the openDesk project, serves to close one of the remaining divergences between Collabora and Microsoft Office

Additional changes

  • All fixes from upstream LibreOffice 7.5.9
  • Conditional formatting rule priority in Calc now matches Excel
  • Improved fontwork text placement (tdf#148000)
  • Support writing SVG images into OOXML using the MS OOXML extension (tdf#126084)
  • Crash fixes
  • Performance fixes

For more information about previous releases, see the full release notes page.

About Collabora Productivity

Collabora Productivity is a leading provider of innovative software solutions, catering to the needs of individuals and businesses worldwide. With a focus on usability, performance, and security, Collabora Office and Online empower users to accomplish their goals efficiently and effectively.

Collabora Office is the latest enterprise release of our desktop office suite based on LibreOffice Technology, for professional, mobile, and online use. Collabora Office 23.05 provides businesses and professionals with the best features, interoperability, LTS and L3 support. Collabora is privileged to work with so many great contributors to the LibreOffice project and appreciates all the outstanding work done by so many that is included into Collabora Office 23.05. Our annual release, contains code that was contributed to LibreOffice 7.47.5 and 7.6. For a deep dive on all details and credits, please do take a look at the release notes.

It’s easy to migrate to Collabora Office or try Collabora Office for yourself! Just head to the Collabora Office page and request your demo today, or download on the Windows or Mac App store.

If you would like to help test out the very latest Collabora Office versions before official release, you can download the development snapshots.

 

CODE & Collabora Online 23.05.4 Released with New Font and QR Code Features

They say time waits for no man, and that’s certainly the case at Collabora. Our latest update to Collabora Online Development Edition has now been released, with a number of exciting new features and improvements, including font previews, QR and barcode generators, as well as a number of bug fixes and performance improvements.

Font Previews

Gone are the days of guessing what a font might look like, with our new font preview drop down, you can immediately view a sample of the font before applying it to the document.

Preview fonts before selecting them

Barcode/QR Code Generator

New to Collabora Online, create and edit barcodes and QR codes with the easy to use QR and Barcode generator dialog. Produce modern documents, with all the functionality you and your users expect and need.

Insert QR codes within documents

Additional Fixes

As well as the exciting new functions listed above, a number of bug fixes have also been carried out, including:

  • Fixed: Navigator Sidebar: Headings Do Not Update Nesting Instantly
  • Fixed: Calc: With multiple views, an edited comment is committed when the other user switches sheets
  • Fixed: Calc: Elements in Chart Type dialogue when editing chart positioned incorrectly
  • Fixed: Calc: Wrong column width after save .xlsx file
  • Fixed: Dark Mode – Document and text is dark
  • Fixed: Calc: No info is shown that spreadsheet is read-only
  • Fixed: Android app or browser: cannot open PDF
  • Fixed: Notebookbar: Online help mixed with keyboard shortcuts (economed)

Collabora Office 23.05 Unveils Exciting New Features, Empowering Users with Enhanced Productivity and Interoperability Features

The new Collabora Office 23.05 brings more features, improved performance and increased interoperability

Cambridge, August 7, 2023 – We are happy to announce the new major release of Collabora Office 23.05.

Collabora Office, for Linux, Windows and Mac, is the enterprise version of the world’s most popular open-source office productivity suite, LibreOffice. It is the foundation for new versions of our online collaborative office, Collabora Online, and also powers our apps for iOS, Android and Chrome OS.

The enterprise office suite provides businesses and professionals a richly featured, secure document creation environment with Long-Term Support (LTS) and bespoke development services backed by decades of experience.

Collabora Office’s new release includes new features targeting three key areas: accessibility, interoperability and usability. Below you will find an overview of the exciting new features and improvements that are available in Collabora Office 23.05 and where you can download it.

Accessibility Features

Accessibility features are created to provide comfort to all users, for example, those who prefer to use just a keyboard, those who cannot see the screen very well or those who have impairments.

Dark Mode

Dark Mode has seen over 40 bug fixes and improvements and further support for switching between dark and light mode manually.

To toggle dark mode on and off:

Along the top navigation bar select: Tools → Options

Collabora Office → View → Appearance Mode: “System”, “Light”, “Dark”
Toggle between light and dark mode

Interoperability Features

For some time, users and organizations have faced a major challenge when trying to find an alternative to Microsoft’s widely-used productivity suite: the issue of file compatibility and interoperability. These improvements continue to build on our already solid base of excellent interoperability and are fully compatible across both the desktop and online versions of Collabora Office.

Document Themes

Document themes are predefined formatting settings that you can apply to a whole document to easily change and re-purpose its appearance, add your own branding and give it a consistent feel. They usually include a combination of specific colours and fonts for heading, subheadings and body text. When the formatting is changed within the theme, it will change across all parts of the document following that formatting.
Themes also allows the user to choose between multiple default looks of objects when inserting and changing, which are derived from the current theme.

To apply a document theme:

Select on the top bar ‘Format → Theme’
Select the theme you’d like to apply
Press ‘Ok’

To create a document theme

Select on the top bar ‘Format → Theme → Add’

From here you can define colours for each part of your document.

Change and customise your Document Theme via a dialog box

Multi-page Floating Tables in Writer

This new feature is a combination of two existing capabilities. Multi-page tables and floating tables. Multi-page tables are tables than span their content over more than one page. Floating tables are tables inside a floating frame. This allows you to wrap text around them, which is particularly useful for brochures. Previously, it was not possible to combine these two features.

Floating frames used to work only on a single page. Now you can create floating tables that span across multiple pages. It improves interoperability with Microsoft’s OOXML format. It also significantly improves interoperability with tables that have been accidentally floated by users in Microsoft Office – often by just adjusting table sizing and positioning. This is frequently a problem in mis-designed Government forms – where tables are used for rendering borders, these should render and be editable with this update.

If you are interested in the complex technical challenges behind this feature, we encourage you to take a look into the series of posts by developer Miklos Vajna. There’s also a very insightful talk presented at COOL Days 2023 on YouTube. This feature is is still under active development, with some minor issues on specific use-cases to be ironed out, but you can make use of it in Collabora Office 23.05 now.

Multi-page Floating Tables in Collabora Office 23.05

Compact View of Pivot Tables

Pivot Tables are a flexible and powerful analysis tool for mixed data sets. Collabora Office can create and import Pivot Tables. The feature had first been introduced to in early 2021 together with numerous statistical tools. Meanwhile, the feature has seen further interoperability improvements. Collabora Office Calc is now able to preserve the more recent default compact Pivot Tables created in Excel. In addition to the more accurate visual representation, this improvement also avoids incorrect cell references.

Multi-Stop Gradients

Exciting improvements have been made to the under-the-hood renderer! Our rendering engine has been enhanced and can now handle even more complex gradients. You can now turn up the visual appeal of your document by incorporating multi-stop gradients into shapes, borders, and other elements. This update is essential for anyone who works with intricate graphics – bringing improvements and better interoperability for existing documents and making it easier to edit more complex designs and graphics.

Improved Frame Anchoring and Position

Collabora Office 23.05 includes improved compatibility with older document-framing descriptions including better positioning for frame handling, better support for combining/splitting frames and overlapping frames, fixes to some cases where parent styles were ignored, and fixes to avoid UI anchor changes that caused movement on the page.

64-bit Zip Support

The Zip64 standard extends numerous internal limitations in the XLSX and ODS formats used to compress documents. While the old zip limitations are enough for most practical user cases, documents with enormous amounts of content embedded could occasionally run into such limits. With support for Zip64 included in 23.05, editing and working with huge spreadsheets is now possible in Collabora Office. Zip64 also serves as a replacement – replacing the older standard for smaller files.

Zip64 support makes for exciting news for all, whether you’re a pro handling massive documents or a casual user who will surely benefit from the interoperability improvements! Everyone can expect improvements across the board.

Usability

Keyboard Navigation through Forms

You can use the tab key to circularly navigate through content controls and fieldmarks. The modern content controls have a tabIndex field, which allows for precise ordering of keyboard navigation. The tabIndex also allows a control to be skipped – which is useful to avoid getting stuck in rich text controls (since the tab key needs to insert a tab character in that case). Form developers can specify the tabIndex via the content control properties UI.

Navigate easily through forms using the tab key

Page Number Wizard

A wizard dialogue box has been added, combining inserting the required headers, footers, and page number fields into a single, easy to use, familiar dialog for users. This features all the common alignment options, support for a variety of languages, and a preview.

Simply select ‘Insert → Page Number...’

and you will see a dialogue box appear which enables you to customise the positioning, alignment and style of page numbers, along with a preview. There are a variety of supported languages available.

To remove page numbers, simply delete the page number in one of the footers and it will remove the page numbers on all pages.

Insert page numbers with the new Page Number Wizard

Other New Features

  • New ‘plain text’, ‘combo box’ and titles and tags options in Content Controls.
  • Added support to open multi image TIFF files.
  • Auto fitting text scaling algorithm has been changed so it works similar to MS Office.
  • Categorized link targets when linking to a presentation.

Community

Collabora has invested significantly in bringing a host of new features and functionality to this latest release and contributes a vast majority of the Collabora Office code. However, we want to acknowledge all of our friends and colleagues in the wider LibreOffice community who helped to contribute not only to this, but also to the underlying LibreOffice Technology upon which Collabora Office, CODE and Collabora Online are built.

All of our code is open source and available to the public on GitHub. Join the Collabora Online Community, take part in easy hacks and discussions in the forum.

Here are some new features contributed by the LibreOffice community.

Typographical Editing

New optional hyphenation settings are available to give rules for adjusting text flow. You can now limit hyphenation within paragraphs, set a minimum word length for hyphenation and opt to not hyphenate the last word of a paragraph.

This work was done by László Németh, NISZ.

Typographical Editing Options

Change Tracking in Numbered Lists

When making changes within numbered lists, the numbering has now been fixed to show actual and original numbers within the document.

Example of new change tracking in numbered lists

Table Style Design Support

You can now modify table styles and create new ones in Impress and Draw. Modified styles are saved into documents, and can be shared via templates. You can access this function by right-clicking on a design in the Table Design Sidebar panel.

This work was done by Maxim Monastirsky.

Table Design Options in the Sidebar

Other community wins include:

About Collabora Productivity

Collabora Productivity is a leading provider of innovative software solutions, catering to the needs of individuals and businesses worldwide. With a focus on usability, performance, and security, Collabora Office and Online empower users to accomplish their goals efficiently and effectively.

Collabora Office is the latest enterprise release of our desktop office suite based on LibreOffice Technology, for professional, mobile, and online use. Collabora Office 23.05 provides businesses and professionals with the best features, interoperability, LTS and L3 support. Collabora is privileged to work with so many great contributors to the LibreOffice project and appreciates all the outstanding work done by so many that is included into Collabora Office 23.05. Our annual release, contains code that was contributed to LibreOffice 7.4, 7.5 and 7.6. For a deep dive on all details and credits, please do take a look at the release notes.

It’s easy to migrate to Collabora Office 23.05 or try Collabora Office 23.05 for yourself! Just head to the Collabora Office page and request your demo today, or download on the Windows or Mac App store.

If you would like to help test out the very latest Collabora Office versions before official release, you can download the development snapshots.

 

 

CODE 23.05 Released, Empowering Users with Enhanced Productivity and Collaboration Features

CODE 23.05 Banner Image

Collabora Productivity Unveils Highly Anticipated Update to CODE (Collabora Online Development Edition), Empowering Users with Enhanced Productivity and Collaboration Features

Cambridge, June 13, 2023 at 13:00 CEST – We are happy to announce the new major release of Collabora Office Development Edition (CODE) 23.05. CODE is the free developer version of our enterprise version, Collabora Online, and includes all the features and enhancements that will be available in Collabora Online 23.05. CODE is targeted at home users and technology enthusiasts, and for those, it is a low-threshold way to get involved and familiar with our online office solution. CODE will be improved continuously and our next supported and maintained Collabora Online product will be built from it. The code is freely available on GitHub.

Below you will find an overview of the exciting new features and improvements that are available in CODE 23.05, as well as how to install the latest version.

 

Get CODE 23.05

 

Continuously Improving the User Interface

Collabora Online Development Edition introduces a sleeker and more intuitive user interface, designed to simplify and optimise the user experience. With a clean and modern look, navigating through various applications and accessing essential tools has never been easier.

 

Accessibility Features

Keyboard Shortcuts

The majority of computer users will use keyboard shortcuts to speed up their work and minimise the need to switch between different input devices. Previously, when collaboratively editing a file in CODE, the shortcut settings were set to the language of the first user.

Now, the keyboard shortcuts have been expanded to allow all users to be able to use their own language’s keyboard shortcuts when editing a file collaboratively.

Another improvement to using keyboard shortcuts is the ability to hold the ‘Alt’ key to highlight your options for learnability.

Page Navigation

Page navigation plays a crucial role in enhancing the user experience, especially when creating large documents in Writer. It allows users to move seamlessly between sections, structure their documents and find the content they are searching for easily within complex documents.

The existing navigator functionality will now be viewable in the sidebar, allowing you to jump to each section by simply double clicking the headings. You can find this by clicking ‘View → Navigator’ and it will appear in the sidebar. From here you can jump to headings, tables, images, hyperlinks and more.

Page Navigation Example Screenshot
Navigate through documents easily in CODE 22.05

JSDialogs

We understand the importance of making software accessible to everyone. That’s why we’ve introduced a new feature that allows screen readers to access menus and dialogs. We have moved the rendering of the dialog rendering to the client-side as JSDialogs, and converted all of our vex library usage to JSDialogs too, to enable higher accessibility.

This change will make it easier for those with impairments to navigate and interact with their documents through text-to-speech or braille displays. We hope this change helps create more inclusive software, and we will continue to strive to provide software that is universally accessible to everyone.

These accessibility wins bring benefits for everyone: in our previous releases we had 3 dialog types with 3 different looks. Now we have introduced a uniform look across the board using JSDialogs.

WAI-ARIA Annotation

WAI-ARIA, the Web Accessibility Initiative – Accessible Rich Internet Applications Suite, defines a way to make Web content and Web applications more accessible to people with disabilities. It especially helps with dynamic content and advanced user interface controls developed with HTML, JavaScript, and related technologies.

To enable screen readers to be able to read our user interface the WAI-ARIA annotations ensure that users know not only what text is currently displayed on-screen, but also the function of each part of the screen. Assigning ‘roles’ to html elements enables screen readers to know how to interact with a page. For example whether text is a hyperlink or a certain box is clickable or not may be immediately obvious to most users, for those with visual disabilities this may not be the case. By adding ARIA roles to elements, we can allow the screen reader to present the end user any additional information.

WAI ARIA annotation is currently available in compact mode.

Initial Screen Reading Support

Designed to assist users with visual impairments, this feature unlocks a world of possibilities, ensuring everyone can participate fully in online collaboration.

Our initial enablement allows writer to read paragraphs from the document as they are navigated through. When user types the screen reader reads the entered content.

For selections, after selecting ‘Hello’, the screen reader will typically say: “Hello selected”. In the same way, if text is deselected, the screen reader reports the state change: “Hello unselected”. Screen reading is a complex area that is best tuned to an individual users’s needs, and NVDA provides a rich palette of functions that can be toggled on or off.

Moreover there are specific shortcut for asking explicitly the NVDA screen read for reading the focused paragraph, the current text selection and so on. This function

Initial screen reader support is currently available in compact mode. Screen reader support is not enabled by default, since it is a resource consuming feature. It can be turned on by modifying the coolwsd.xml configuration file. Search for the accessibility section in coolwsd.xml and set the enable item to true.

Dark Mode and Custom View Settings

Per view settings, allows us to render views differently – including various options such as showing non-printing characters or spell checking underlines in different views, in addition to Dark Mode.

As anyone who’s worked on an important proposal late into the night will tell you, staring at a bright screen and concentration don’t often go hand in hand. That’s why we’re thrilled to introduce Collabora Online’s Dark Mode.

Dark mode selector in 23.05
Dark mode selector menu
Dark mode menu items
Dark mode menu items

Interoperability Features

For some time, users and organizations have faced a major challenge when trying to find an alternative to Microsoft’s widely-used productivity suite: the issue of file compatibility and interoperability. These improvements continue to build on our already solid base, and we will continue to strive to offer the best possible level of compatibility in the office suite market.

Multi-Stop Gradients

Exciting improvements have been made to the under-the-hood renderer! Our rendering engine has been enhanced and can now handle even more complex gradients. You can now turn up the visual appeal of your document by incorporating multi-stop gradients into shapes, borders, and other elements. This update is essential for anyone who works with intricate graphics – bringing improvements and better interoperability for existing documents and making it easier to collaborate on more complex designs and graphics.

It has been great to work with allotropia on this excellent feature.

22.05 Multi-stop gradient example
Multi-stop gradients in 22.05
23.05 Multi-stop gradient example
Multi-stop gradients in 23.05

 

64-bit Zip Support

The Zip64 standard extends numerous internal limitations in the XLSX and ODS formats used to compress documents. While the old zip limitations are enough for most practical user cases, documents with enormous amounts of content embedded could occasionally run into such limits. With support for Zip64 included in 23.05, editing and working with huge spreadsheets is now possible in Collabora Online. Zip64 also serves as a replacement – replacing the older standard for smaller files.

Zip64 support makes for exciting news for all, whether you’re a pro handling massive documents or a casual user who will surely benefit from the interoperability improvements! Everyone can expect improvements across the board.

Compact View of Pivot Tables

Pivot Tables are a flexible and powerful analysis tool for mixed data sets. Collabora Online can create and import Pivot Tables. The feature had first been introduced to Online in early 2021 together with numerous statistical tools. Meanwhile, the feature has seen further interoperability improvements. Collabora Online Calc is now able to preserve the more recent Excel default of compact Pivot Tables created in Excel. In addition to the more accurate visual representation, this improvement can also avoids incorrect cell references.

Document Themes

Document themes are predefined styles and formatting settings that you can apply to a whole document to easily change and re-purpose its appearance and give it a consistent style. It usually includes a combination of specific colours and fonts for heading, subheadings and body text, as well as sizing, alignment, indentation, spacing and other visual effects. When the format of the style is changed within the theme, it will change across all parts of the document following that style.

To apply a document theme:

Select on the top bar ‘Format → Theme’
Select the theme you’d like to apply
Press ‘Ok’

To create a document theme

Select on the top bar ‘Format → Theme → Add’

From here you can define colours for each part of your document.

Document theme example image
Change the Style of Your Documents in One Click

Multi-page Floating Tables in Writer

This new feature is a combination of two existing capabilities. Multi-page tables and floating tables. Multi-page tables are tables than span their content over more than one page. Floating tables are tables inside a floating frame. This allows you to wrap text around them, which is particularly useful for brochures. Previously, it was not possible to combine these two features.

Floating frames used to work only on a single page. Now you can create floating tables that span across multiple pages. This feature has been primarily developed for Collabora Online, but is useful on the desktop version, Collabora Office, too. It improves interoperability with Microsoft’s OOXML format. It also significantly improves interoperability with tables that have been accidentally floated by users in Microsoft Office – often by just adjusting table sizing and positioning. This is frequently a problem in mis-designed Government forms – where tables are used for rendering borders, these should render and be editable with this update.

If you are interested in the complex technical challenges behind this feature, we encourage you to take a look into the series of posts by developer Miklos Vajna. There’s also a very insightful talk presented at COOL Days 2023 on YouTube. This feature is is still under active development, with some minor issues on specific use-cases to be ironed out, but you can make use of it in CODE 23.05 now.

Multi-page floating table example image
Tables Are Now Optimised to Span Multiple Pages

Improved Frame Anchoring and Position

CODE 23.05 includes improved compatibility with older document-framing descriptions including better positioning for frame handling, better support for combining/splitting frames and overlapping frames, fixes to some cases where parent styles were ignored, and fixes to avoid UI anchor changes that caused movement on the page.

 

Ergonomics

Simple Page Number Insertion

A wizard dialogue box has been added, combining inserting the required headers, footers, and page number fields into a single, easy to use, familiar dialog for users.

This features all the common alignment options, support for a variety of languages, and a preview.

Simply select ‘Insert → Page Numbers’

and you will see a dialogue box appear which enables you to customise the positioning, alignment and style of page numbers. There are a variety of supported languages available including Asian and Cyrillic styles.

Page number wizard example image

Core New Features Introduced in 22.05 Updates

Since the major release of CODE 22.05 in June 2022, many new features have been introduced throughout the year. These have had extensive testing and are now officially core features of 23.05.

Choosing the citation style before inserting a first citation with Zotero in Collabora Online

Reference Management and Bibliographic Data with Zotero

Zotero is an open-source reference management software allowing users to manage bibliographic data and related research materials. It allows users to share bibliography libraries and notes, choosing from different citation styles. Collabora Online can now browse all the existing records of one’s Zotero library, enabling users to insert, remove, and refresh references, citations, and notes or to automatically generate bibliographies. This makes Collabora Online an excellent solution for research and academia alike.

This is currently a Nextcloud exlusive feature. Users will need to enter a valid Zotero API key into their office settings. More details on the Zotero plug-in are available on our blog. We hope to see more Collabora Online integrators making this feature available soon.

Zotero references example image

AI Based Translations with DeepL

DeepL is a leading AI company based in Germany. It offers the DeepL Translator, a translation tool based on a machine learning model that is trained by a large team of linguists. The plug-in is connected to the DeepL API and makes these high-quality translations available directly in Collabora Online without having to leave the document you are working on. To make use of it, it will need to be configured inside coolwsd.xml. Find out more about it on our blog or in the Collabora Online SDK. Once the feature is enabled, translating text inside a Writer document is as easy as selecting it, clicking the “Translate” button and choosing the target language from dialog.

DeepL translation example image 001
1. Select the text

 

DeepL translation example image 002
2. Click the Translate button
DeepL translation example image 003
3. Select the target language

Improved Hyperlink Pop-ups

The Collabora Online UI sees constant updates, improving the experience based on user feedback. One of the obvious changes can be seen in the way hyperlinks are handled in documents. Now, when clicking on a hyperlink, a small pop-up dialog appears, allowing several options. You can click the URL to follow the link (a pop-up will warn you, if you are leaving for an external page), you can copy the link, edit or delete it. The new and improved hyperlink pop-ups are available for all modules of Collabora Online and do significantly improve the handling of links – especially inside spreadsheets.

Get CODE 23.05

Community

Collabora has invested significantly in bringing a host of new features and functionality to this latest release and contributes a vast majority of the Collabora Online code. However, we want to acknowledge all of our friends and colleagues in the wider LibreOffice community who helped to contribute not only to this, but also to the underlying LibreOffice Technology upon which CODE and Collabora Online are built.

All of our code is open source and available to the public on GitHub. Join the Collabora Online Community, take part in easy hacks and discussions in the forum.

Typographical Editing

New optional hyphenation settings are available to give rules for adjusting text flow. You can now limit hyphenation within paragraphs, set a minimum word length for hyphenation and opt to not hyphenate the last word of a paragraph.

This work was done by László Németh, NISZ.

Other community wins include:

  • Improved positioning of glyphs
  • Improved change tracking
  • Easy sheet searching dialog in Calc
  • and many more commits from LibreOffice 7.4 and LibreOffice 7.5.

About Collabora Productivity

Collabora Productivity is a leading provider of innovative software solutions, catering to the needs of individuals and businesses worldwide. With a focus on usability, performance, and security, Collabora Online empowers users to accomplish their goals efficiently and effectively.

How to Manage Bibliographic Data With Zotero and Collabora Online

 

Collabora Online & Zotero

Zotero is an open-source reference management software allowing users to manage bibliographic data and related research materials. It allows users to share bibliography libraries and notes, choosing from different citation styles. Collabora Online can now browse all the existing records of one’s Zotero library, enabling users to insert, remove, and refresh references, citations, and notes or to automatically generate bibliographies. This makes Collabora Online an excellent solution for research and academia alike, as well as an ideal option when working with Zotero research assistant.

 

Setting-up Zotero for Collabora Online

Setting up Zotero for Collabora Online in Nextcloud

At the time of writing, the Zotero integration is available to Nextcloud users with installed Richdocuments (v7.1.0 and up). All that is required to use this feature is Collabora Online, Nextcloud with Nextcloud Office app (richdocuments) installed and a valid Zotero API Key. Zotero users can create or edit their API keys at zotero.org/settings/keys and then simply copy it into the respective field inside the office settings (Administration Settings > Office) of their Nextcloud instance. All private properties related to the user remain private at all times, while public properties remain accessible to other users and are handled separately.

Inserting Citation and Choosing Citation Style

Choosing the citation style before inserting a first citation with Zotero in Collabora Online

Place the cursor on the position in your Writer document where you would like to highlight a citation. In the “Reference” menu or tab – depending on which user interface you are using – choose “Add Citation”. If this is the first time a citation is added to the document, a style prompt will show up, allowing you to choose from numerous citations styles – for example, Chicago Manual of Style, MLA Style, ISO-690, APA Style, Oxford Style Guide and many more. Setting the citation style needs only be done once, the chosen citation style will be stored inside the document. The work to be cited can be chosen from a pop-up dialog including your personal and shared libraries on Zotero. Large libraries can be filtered using the search bar.

Adding Citation from the Zotero library in Collabora Online (Tabbed UI)
Choosing a work to cite from the Zotero library in Collabora Online
Select footnotes or endnotes in the preferred style

 

Refreshing Citations and Style

Refreshing citations from the Zotero library in Collabora Online

It’s a common workflow for authors to add a series of incomplete records to their library as a first step, and then adding additional metadata. Another common request is to be able to change the citation style for a document. This is important when submitting works for different publications, but also if for instance a citation style gets updated to a newer edition. Collabora Online allows these updates to be made easily.

Pressing the button “Refresh Citations” (or selecting the respective item inside the menu of the Compact View UI) fetches the updates from your Zotero library. A message at the button of the document keeps the user informed about the progress of this process. Updating the Citation Style is also straightforward. The option “Citation Preference” opens the above-mentioned Citation Style dialog, allowing users to switch styles for the whole document at any time.

 

Creating a Bibliography and Inserting Notes

Adding an auto-generated bibliography inside Collabora Online

The Zotero integration allows users to make a clear distinction between notes and citations in Collabora Online. Inserting a note works similar to inserting a citation. Choosing this option from the UI will open the dialog and grant access to the notes of the user’s Zotero library. Notes are quite flexible items that can include HTML, formatting and emojis.

A bibliography of the works cited in the document can be generated automatically with a simple click. It appears at the position where the cursor is located. Collabora generates only the pure bibliography without additional text or placeholders, so the heading can be added according to your preferences (index, glossary, bibliography).

 

Try it in Collabora Online or CODE

The Zotero integration has been introduced to Collabora Online with the release of Collabora Online 22.05.10 in February 2023. You can test the feature in our free demo. Tech enthusiasts may also like to test it inside an installation of CODE, the free Collabora Online Development Edition, intended for home users and Developers who would like to help to test the latest features first. Find all the instructions here.