PowerPoint's old push-down transition has done its 15 years of service, and it's time for it to retire. Do the sleepy faces in your meetings agree? OpenOffice.org Impress 2.4 has the answer in the form ten 3D OpenGL-rendered transitions:
- Flipping tiles
- Outside turning cube
- Revolving circles
- Turning helix
- Inside turning cube
- Turn around
- Turn down
[t]he actual transitions implementation is not the whole work, there was much more work to make it behave nicely inside of OOo. Shane wrote the whole transitional framework, Thorsten made all the necessary changes in sd and slideshow modules to make it happen, I was updating canvas backends to get slides content. Most probably more things I forgot.
There are also more transitions coming, we have now 2 new 3D transitions (3D Venetian blinds hor/vert) and some replacements for 2D transitions for better performance.
Alternatively, you can also download the video above Ogg Vorbis + Theora or DivX AVI in 640x480. The stutter is the fault of the recording software, but the transitions actually play smoothly in OpenOffice.org. The photos are from Pear Biter, Joto25, Wili, Eschipul, Louisa Hennessy, Matthew Fang, Gari Baldi, and Darwin Bell. The music is Cellule by Silence.
Drivers and X.org fussiness
Though you do not actually have to install or use Compiz, both OpenOffice.org and Compiz have the same demanding requirements of your video drivers and X server setup. Check Compiz.org for tips on setting up your system. On my main computer, which can't run Compiz because of its low-power onboard video card, I suffered unmapped textures (white objects) and application crashes. The videos were captured on a Dell Latitude D820 with nVidia G72M (GeForce Go7400) and 256MB video memory using the nVidia 169.09 binary driver.
Availability for download
The 3D transitions feature will be generally available in OpenOffice.org 2.4—but only for Linux. The upstream OpenOffice.org edition will package the feature as an extension. Other editions of OpenOffice.org, such as OxygenOffice and Go-Oo, may include integrate the feature.
There is no ETA for porting the 3D transitions to Windows, and do not expect the feature in OpenOffice.org 2.4 for Windows.
April 24: "Where is the OpenGL 3D extension for Impress?" (download instructions)