January 29, 2019 | Formats, Important features, New Releases

Open Document Text File Format Now Supported in GdPicture.NET and DocuVieware

Open Document Text File Format

We’re happy to welcome a new text format in our SDK!
After Open Office XML in 2017, GdPicture.NET now supports .odt format (since version 14.1.0).
As you will see in today’s article, support for .odt files can be an essential element for those who work with government agencies and public administrations.

OpenDocument and .odt

The ODT file format (.odt) is one of OpenDocument file formats, for word processing (text) documents.
The Open Document Format for Office Applications (ODF), also known as OpenDocument, is a ZIP-compressed XML-based file format for spreadsheets, charts, presentations, and word processing documents. It was developed with the aim of providing an open, XML-based file format specification for office applications.

A technical committee developed the standard in the Organization for the Advancement of Structured Information Standards (OASIS) consortium. It was based on the Sun Microsystems specification for OpenOffice.org XML, the default format for OpenOffice.org, which had been specifically intended “to provide an open standard for office documents.”

In addition to being an OASIS standard, it was published as an ISO/IEC international standard:
ISO/IEC 26300 – Open Document Format for Office Applications (OpenDocument).
The first version of the standard was released in 2006 and revised in 2015.

Benefits and users

The .odt format is very popular for individuals and organizations that don’t want or cannot, for licensing, pricing, or even ideological reasons (open-source vs. proprietary format), use Microsoft Word.

The Library of Congress (LOC) is altogether the research library for the United States Congress, the national library of the United States, and its oldest federal cultural institution. Its Recommended Formats Statement (RFS) 2015-2016 includes ODF (ISO/IEC 26300) as an acceptable format for textual works in digital form, and .odt is found in their list of format descriptions for text.

According to the LOC website:

A number of government bodies have adopted the ODF family of formats as mandatory or recommended for documents which must be editable to support collaboration within the government or between the government and the public or other entities.

For example:

  • The United Kingdom
  • Portugal
  • Norway
  • Brazil and several other South American nations

Policy documents that include ODF among acceptable formats for exchange of editable documents with governments include:

  • the German Standards and Architecture for e-Government Applications (SAGA)
  • the eGovernment in Denmark
  • the RGI (Référentiel Général d’Interopérabilité) in France

In 2014, the Vice-President of the European Commission Maroš Šefčovič, mentioned that “For revisable documents, all European institutions are recommended to support as a minimum two ISO standards, the Open Document Format (ODT) and Office Open XML (OOXML).”

Archival institutions from the USA, Canada, Australia, and Norway mention and in some cases recommend ODF in their format support list (often along with other XML-based documents formats like Open Office XML).

Detailed information and sources can be found on this page.

.odt features in GdPicture.NET and DocuVieware

Below is the list of features currently available in GdPicture.NET Document Imaging SDK:

  • Read .odt from file or stream
  • Print .odt document with full control on the printing process
  • Convert to searchable PDF
  • Display text, styles, formatting, and images
  • Convert to image files
  • Conversion retains layout
  • Conversion to PDF preserves fonts and text
  • Search text
  • Extract text

As usual with any of our SDK features, this solution is any CPU (available in 32-bit & 64-bit versions) and can work in multi-thread applications.
Office applications are designed for interactive use which tends to mean single process, single thread models. Being independent of these applications, .odt support in GdPicture.NET can work with multiple threads and multiple processes.

If you need to view, annotate, and manipulate OpenDocument Text files on any platform, including mobile devices, check out our DocuVieware HTML5 Viewer and Document Management kit.

You will find an example of a .odt file in our viewer on the website.

If you have any questions or specific requests regarding the .odt format, please contact our technical support on the Helpdesk, they will be happy to help.
Remember that even if you’re not a customer and are evaluating our product, technical support is provided for free with any trial key.
We also have a dedicated section for text documents (Open Office XML and .odt) on our public forum if you prefer to contact us there.
And of course, our reference guide is accessible to anyone here.