ODF is an open specification supported by a strong community of players. It provides flexibility to users of some of the most important computer applications. The developers of this mature standard followed a careful process when they design it, and took advantage of developments in related specifications. In September, 2007 another important player joined the cause as IBM announced ODF support for the Lotus Symphony application suite, covering documents, spreadsheets, and presentations.
People communicate through office documents, so management of text is paramount. In this tutorial, you saw how to represent text simply in ODF, and got a small taste of how richly you can enhance text where necessary. Spreadsheets are a long-established tool for management, and in this tutorial you saw how to start with simple HTML tables, and turn these into tables of text, and then tables for a spreadsheet. In general this is a good sequence for starting easy with ODF, and then filling in the more sophisticated constructs. Think of what you can do in HTML, and experiment with simple documents that are mere shallow translations of HTML documents, and then gradually expand using ODF-specific features. One good way to discover these features is to play with your experimental documents in an office application, and then check out the results in the saved file. That's the power of an open application format that looks to other standards for reuse opportunities. If you develop applications for text processing, spreadsheets, presentations, or drawings, consider ODF for your on-disk file format.