ABIWORD support.

Abiword is a great, more readable (to me) word processor that also (to me) resembles word 2003. Please make a .dll plug-in for Abiword! Open Office is ok, but after some time the typeface of any font rendered by it gives me headaches. To top that off I am required to use 12 point Times New Roman (blah). I am a double major student, and have a lot of typing to do so I need my Abiword.
  • I support this. Abiword is especially attractive because of its very moderate system requirements. Abiword is also the software that runs on the OLPC-laptop (OpenOffice would consume way too much memory). Since Zotero is such a great tool for knowledge-management, it would be great if it could be used on the OLPC machines, too.
  • some addition: I also sent the feature request to the people at abiword.

    Their position is that

    "the license of zotera is not well known and its compatibity with GPL hasn't been documented"

    Is it true that there are issues concerning the compatibility between the Educational Community Licence and the GPL that could be an obstacle for an Abiword-plugin?
  • I don't think the license is that relevant. We're talking about a third-party plug-in.

    Projects like AbiWord need to start thinking about generic interfaces for this sort of thing. It's rather inefficient that every word-processor and every bibliographic solution needs to roll their own code for each piece.
  • Thanks for your answer. I cannot speak for the community of Abisource developers, but the discussion on
    gives me the impression that, basically due to a lack of manpower, they won't develop a plugin on their own. However, they also write that if someone else (within the Zotero-Project?) would work on a plugin,
    "We'd happily help them and consider including their plugin in our distribution."
    Unfortunately, I'm no programmer and cannot contribute any code (sigh...). But if someone shares the conviction that an Abiword-integration would be useful, has some time left and is able to write such plugin it would certainly be welcomed by many people who are not happy with, or not even able to make use of, the memory-consuming OpenOffice.org-package.

  • I looked at that discussion and while INAL, I find the comment from Dom about my comment above rather surprising. The license does matter if AbiSource wants to distribute such a plug-in, but doesn't otherwise. The OOo plug-in, for example, needs no license approval from the OOo project or from Sun.

    It might be valuable for the Zotero team to consider licensing the plug-in under different terms than the main code though. Developers do get rightly nervous about licensing issues, and better (in my view) to use widely under licenses where you can.

    Also, I think applications like Zotero should be easily able to integrate into ANY editing solution: AbiWord, Google Docs, emacs, etc. etc. But just for the record, I think it's likely that the best way to do this is to develop a generic API.
  • I'd just want to chip in my support for this request. An Abiword plugin for Zotero would allow me to switch from MS and Endnote to Abiword and Zoteroo. Which would be great and feel great :)
  • edited April 9, 2008
    We're in the process of porting the current word processor plugin code from VBA to Python (for Mac Office 2008 compatibility and hopefully better performance). Once that's done, it's possible someone would be able to take the core Python code, which will be used across all apps (Word and OpenOffice on various platforms), and integrate it into an AbiWord plugin. We currently have no plans to do so, however. Ticket created in case someone wants to take it.

    See also this thread for a discussion on a possible more general solution.
  • I am wondering whether there has been any more discussion about possible development of a plugin for AbiWord, elsewhere. I see there has been no activity on the ticket Dan created.
  • edited June 23, 2009
    I am pretty much in favour of an Abiword-plugin, too.
  • I am now also very much in favor of the generic approach as proposed by bdarcus! Instead of developing many plugins for many different versions of many different programs, on many different platforms, we should just have
    (1) a simple (text-only?) and reliable format for reference-marks which would have to be inserted into the documents (it would suffice if that would be done by selecting the reference in Zotero, applying a certain shortcut and pasting the mark into the document);
    (2) a reliable cross-platform post-processor which would process the final document and change the reference marks into full bibliographic data.
    The post-processor should be able to process the most important formats (e.g. rtf, odf, doc), but it would not have to deal with all kinds of APIs of many different programs. Currently, formatting bibiliographies is one of the (few) clear weaknesses of Zotero in comparison with programs like EndNote. However, if we abstain from imitating nice but, at least in my view, completely unnecessary features (like the 'cite while you write' functionality), and focus instead on reliability and flexibility (in terms of cross-platform compatibility and a simple and well-documented front-end for modifying bibliographic styles), Zotero could become superior in this area as well.
  • Abiword can work with RTF, so the rtfscan feature in Zotero 2.0 could be used. As Dan indicated, any AbiWord CWYW plugin would probably be volunteer-contributed.
  • thanks -- great to hear that a rtf-scan feature is already in development!
  • Anyone out there interested in working on an Abiword plugin will have noticed that Abiword 2.8.0 just came out, accompanied by the rollout of a dedicated document sharing service at https://abicollab.net/. I hadn't looked at Abiword in a very long time. I was curious, so ...

    (begin cheerleading)

    This morning I compiled the word processor from source on my netbook, created an AbiCollab account, and clicked around a bit. It's well designed. From end to end, the whole kit is straightforward, lightweight, intuitive, gregarious, and as far as I can tell, very robust. This looks like a truly brilliant solution for collaborative projects, and an excellent companion to Zotero.

    To anyone who undertakes to put a plugin together for this product: I hereby undertake to cheer you on with great enthusiasm from the back of the room. It really would be a great contribution.

    (end cheerleading)
  • Also from the back of the room: developing a Zotero CWYW plugin for AbiWord/AbiCollab would probably greatly benefit from metadata embedding inside the .abw-documents*. With this, references introduced by the Zotero plugin would not be linked to a particular library.

    * Support for metadata embedding seems to be on the to do list of the Zotero developers: http://forums.zotero.org/discussion/8237/merge-two-doc-files/?Focus=37203#Comment_37203
  • I'm in favour of an abiword plugin too.
  • I just want to bump this to see if anything has changed in the two years since this was first open. One thing that has changed is that the abiword developers have made it pretty clear they don't feel comfortable developing a plugin, but encourage others to do so. The other thing is that abiword has introduced some pretty incredible collaboration features, which would go very well with zoteros'.
  • Another thing that has changed is that a standalone CSL processor is now available, with an API that supports on-the-fly in-document insertion, deletion and editing of citations. I doubt that the Zotero devs have time available to work on an Abiword plugin, but it should be very doable for someone willing to take it on, given the infrastructure now available on either end of the connection.
  • Maybe next year a google summer of code student could tackle it? I think it's closed for this year.
  • While being a basic word processor, it's actually better than anything built within a browser:

    This collaboration feature alone is outstanding. It takes a min for any collaborator to download it (wonders of free software) and start working on a paper together.

    Maybe we could pool money together and make a bounty for someone to implement this? If interested, contact me, my lastname @ gmail (homepage on my profile).
  • Abiword support would be great, indeed.
  • +1 for AbiWord - it is portable, cross-platform, lightweight and yet very powerful. Collaboration features are very promising, and with the newly developed Annotations tool (really, check it:), as well as its robust versioning and styling capabilities, it makes a very charming option (in some cases even more so than the bulky OpenOffice.org suite, I'm afraid:)
  • I want to add dictionary with the Abiword source code for my project can anyone please help me?
  • Another voice for wanting AbiWord support, a plugin like the OOo/LibreOffice plugin would be absolutely wonderful.
    I would also like to ask is there anyway to offer to pay/donate to help develop this plugin?
  • It would be a third-party project. Perhaps Kickstarter? Someone would have to step forward to produce a proposal and offer to coordinate the project if enough funds come in.
  • Let me say that I changed my mind about the importance of further text-processor-plugins.

    Personally, I find it MUCH more important to improve and support the RTF-scan feature in Zotero so that any program that is able to export to RTF can make use of it. Even writing a paper in collboration with authors who use different text-processors won't be any problem then.

    Of course, if you cannot or do not want to use RTF, this solution will not do. Hence, something like LyZ, the Zotero-Connector for LaTeX-processor LyX, is another story. Since I love LyX, I really hope that LyZ will stay.

    Also, if you really need something like "Cite while you write", RTF-scan will not be a solution as well. However, I never understood why it could be important to get references and bibliographies formatted "on the fly" instead of after finishing the paper.
  • Yes, I basically want the cite while you write capability. The whole point of Zotero for me is for it to do all the hard work for me. Adding extra steps is not the way to go.

    I want to be able to write, insert a reference, and then continue writing. Without having to worry about having the correct formatting so that the RTF-scan will pick it up. I could just use LibreOffice/OOo, but I prefer Abiword as it is much lighter, and much nicer for many of the types of writing I do.

    It's not the end of the world if I can't use Abiword as I do LibreOffice/OOo, but it would be nice.

    fbennett: do you have any idea about developers who might be interested in this type of project?
  • Savage.Disarray wrote:
    > It's not the end of the world if I can't use Abiword
    > as I do LibreOffice/OOo, but it would be nice.

    Well, I agree...
  • @Savage.Disarray,

    The Abiword project and its forums would probably be the place to check, since whoever undertook it would need to know the Abiword internals pretty well. The hardest part might be lining up maintenance, to be sure the plugin is updated to reflect future Abiword revisions.
  • as for RTF scan - eventually the goal would be to have it include a unique identifier of some type so that it would be 100% reliable. That identifier could be created from within Zotero, so that you could use it as a sort of cite-as-you write.
  • You can now use Abiword with Zotero, using the newly-released RTF/ODF Scan plugin. It does not require any special support in Abiword itself.
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