Reflections and Projections

Version 1.2.6 available for download

Version 1.2.6 is a small bug fix release to enhance the Powerpoint handling capability with MS Office version 2007. This should make some of you out there still running version 1 a bit happier :)

Translating OpenLP 2.0

It's been very quiet on the translation front for a while now, but rest assured, we've been working hard behind the scenes to get OpenLP's internationlisation abilities top notch. We now have the most of the strings in OpenLP updated and included in the translation files.

Translators are welcome to start working on the translation for their language! The next planned release, Alpha 3 aka "Dashing Daniel", is just around the corner (only 9 days till release), and while that doesn't give us much time, we can at least make a start. The translations will be included in this release. Lets GO!

Important Note: There is a string openlp/core/utils/languagemanager.py, "English". This string is meant to be your language's name, in your language. For example, in the German translation file, you would translate this string to "Deutsch".

If you'd like to join the translation team, please see the Getting Started page on the wiki.

500 Facebook fans!

With OpenLP version 2.0 development heading fast to another alpha release, the popularity of OpenLP seems to also be rising. Granted, using Facebook as a popularity meter may not be the best way to tell, but seems pretty good to us. One of the most notable changes that has happened recently has been major changes to the output display. With the next release you should see working text over video, text enhancements (bold text, text colors, etc) and spell checking. I really look forward to the spell checking because there is something pretty embarrassing about looking up from the stage on Sunday morning realizing that you misspelled something.

The songs plug in has also seen some improvements. Alternate song titles are now working and also the ability to link media files to songs. Personally I have also been playing around with the remote plug in. It has a lot of uses but one that I have seen is using it for nursery workers to flash something on screen when they may need a little parental help.

OpenLP from a user's standpoint has really come a long way in the last few months. I came to OpenLP from using a rather expensive “boxed” software solution and OpenLP is set to absolutely blow it out of the water for features and not to mention price. Then combine that with the relatively low system requirements versus the others, and its simply amazing what OpenLP is set to accomplish.

We can always use testers, especially as OpenLP nears completion. Please check out the download section of the site to download the latest alpha release. For more information on 2.0 check out the OpenLP 2.0 specific section of the forum and always feel free to hangout with many developers and users in chat on #openlp.org on freenode or check out the webchat option.

Fedora Weekly Build

For anyone who wants to keep up to date with regular builds I will be updating my personal repository which is compatible with Package Manager.  The repos definition can be found at http://repos.fedorapeople.org/repos/trb143/OpenLP/.

To obtain this version instead of the normal Fedora updates you will need to use "--disablerepo=updates"

Add this and you will get regular updates outside the normal build cycles.

Bugs for these builds should be logged on Launchpad or IRC not bugzilla.

w00t! Revision 1000!

I'm proud to announce that OpenLP 2.0 reached revision 1000 on Sunday evening. That means that there are over 1000 features, improvements or bugfixes in OpenLP 2.0.

One of the latest new features that was added to OpenLP is a Song Import Wizard. Those who downloaded and installed Alpha 2 "Hairy Habakkak" would have noticed that there was a Song Import Wizard in there, but it didn't seem to work. This is because it was simply a shell, and had no actual functionality. I'm glad to say that this has been changed, and in Alpha 3 "Dashing Daniel" the Song Import Wizard will work.

As usual, those folks running Ubuntu or one of it's derivatives can get revision 1000 out of our developer PPA, and those who are brave enough to download the source code and get it up and running too. For once, Windows users can also try out revision 1000 via a special Windows build. Please note that this will overwrite your existing installation of OpenLP 2.0, so make sure you make backups first.

New Output Display for 2.x

Following 2 months of work, the display and text rendering code has been replaced. Due to the magnitude of the change there may still be bugs, so please report them in the usual way.

These changed allow a number of significant new features to become available:

  • Text over video now works correctly.
  • Changeable image and video backgrounds now have a proper start and finish.
  • Text enhancements are now available like colours and styles (bold, italic, etc).
  • Spell checker for songs and custom slides.

Unfortunately we've had to remove two theme features as they are no longer possible: transparent backgrounds, which was an early attempt to implement text over video, and indentation for line wrapping. Any transparent themes will automatically be converted to a black background.

Also note that themes may now display slightly differently as we are using a different display technology.

To access the new text enhancements, edit either a song or a custom slide and you'll see a new menu has been added to the right-click context menu of the edit box. This will allow tags to be inserted as a pair or wrapped round selected text. We will no doubt implement a nice WYSIWYG editor in a future release. Eventually we'll even allow the user to define their own tags, so that they can add styles to their slides.

From a developer's point of view to code is now much simpler and easier to maintain going forward. The new code is based on a web browser so HTML tags now can be added to text for display. Tags are implemented using a non-HTML tagging mechanism, so that it is easier to work with the tags and the text.

As an additional bonus, I have added a spellcheck to the songs and custom editors.  It makes use of the PyEnchant libraries, so Linux users will need to add "python-enchant" (Fedora and Ubuntu) from their code repositories, and Windows users will have to download the library from http://www.rfk.id.au/software/pyenchant/download.html. The builds will include this library automatically.

The screenshot you see here of the development team's favourite song is an example of what we can achieve.

Version 1.2.5 is available for download

This is a fairly minor update release with the following changes:

  • Prevent the creation of the ".lit" file in the openlp.exe directory which causes Windows 7 issues
  • Correction made to the bundled PPT presentation
  • Correction made to display configured Bible permission.
  • Audio component updated due to bugfixes

PC-BSD users rejoice!

I'm very happy to tell everyone who uses PC-BSD and is looking for free church presentation software for PC-BSD that OpenLP is now available for that platform as well. Kris Moore of PC-BSD has kindly packaged OpenLP for us, and you can find the package on pbiDIR.com. Many thanks to Kris for helping get OpenLP onto another platform!

**FLAG DAY** Database schema changes in trunk revision 956

Revision 956 commits code to change the database schema for the way song information is stored.  This is to fix a previous oversight with alternative titles (they work and are stored correctly now) and to add the ability to link media files to songs.

When updating to this or any later revision your old database will crash OpenLP.  To prevent this from happening:

  • Move or rename your existing database (in ~/.openlp/data/songs or ~/.local/share/openlp/songs on Linux or %APPDATA%\openlp\data\songs on Windows)
  • Open OpenLP to automatically create a database with the new schema
  • Import your old data by selecting  File -> Import -> OpenLP v2 Songs from the menu in the top left of OpenLP
  • Find your old database and click Open
  • Your data will be imported.  This may take a while with no visible progress feedback.
  • When the import is finished a message box will say this is the case.

Being able to play tracks with songs is one of the few remaining version 1 features left to implement in version 2 and this change allows us to start building that feature.

OpenSong import for v2.0

Finally - I found time to write some code!  We can now import OpenSong format songs to the development version of OpenLP2 (as of revision 951)

It will import from straight text files, or from ZIP files containing loads of OpenSong files.  Note that, unfortunately, there's something weird about importing files with non-ascii characters in their filenames from zipfiles which I haven't got to the bottom of yet.  This causes the importer to die horribly with unicode errors.. so that's next on the list to fix!

Anyway, testers - have at it!