OpenOffice.org’s (OOo) chat processor, alleged Writer, has an anchored artful ability agnate to a spreadsheet. This commodity shows how to use it by architecture an balance arrangement with annual crumbling and automated totals.
OpenOffice.org is an open-source appointment suite. It can alter added appointment suites and has accomplished book altering filters. It runs on several operating systems, including Linux, Solaris, Macintosh OS X and Windows.
As an absolute contractor, I accept to bill barter in adjustment to eat. As I’d rather be hacking Linux, I accept allurement to accomplish invoicing as simple and accessible as possible. Sometimes barter are backward paying, and I accept to age their account, that is, appearance which genitalia of the balance are 30, 60 and 90 or added canicule accomplished due.
I accept that action set up as an OpenOffice.org template, accessible to use for anniversary invoice. Figure 1 shows what a afresh created balance looks like. It is loaded from a user template. As you can see from the illustration, the crumbling advice is in a table, and the age-old amounts are added up in the Absolute cell. In addition, all the items in the invoice, including the accomplished due total, should be summed for the Absolute Due band of the capital balance table.
Figure 1. A afresh created balance in OpenOffice.org, accessible to edit.
In this article, I charm the bulk of the invoice, the two tables and appearance how to use spreadsheet-like functions to automate the calculations. This commodity is based on OpenOffice.org adaptation 1.1. Versions 1.0.x accept the aforementioned facilities, but the user interface is altered and somewhat added awkward.
Creating a Template
The aboriginal affair to do is actualize a cast new document. From the Book pull-down menu, accept New –> Text Document. Afresh save it (File –> Save As), as apparent in Figure 2. Save it as a Text Certificate Template, and be abiding to save it in the agenda ~/OpenOffice.org1.1.0/user/template/, area user templates are found. If you accept OpenOffice.org set to accommodate the addendum automatically, it should accommodate one of .stw.
Figure 2. Saving an OpenOffice.org Writer certificate as a template. Note the agenda to save in.
Now verify you can use the arrangement already you’ve done article advantageous with it. Alpha a new certificate with Book –> New –> Templates and Documents. Bang on Default, and you should see analysis (no extension) in the account of accessible templates.
Filling in the Template
I leave creating the card as an exercise for the reader. You charge to accomplish abiding it lists your acknowledgment address, the invoice’s date (hint: use date fields) and the aborigine (hint: see Abstracts Source Overview in the OpenOffice.org help). These should all be in adapted styles so you can change them calmly and the changes will administer beyond the document.
The Capital Balance Table
Below the letterhead, abode and salutation, admit the capital balance table, the high of the two. It is a two cavalcade table, with a description on the larboard and the bulk on the right. (Insert –> Table.) Accommodate neither a attack nor a border. We accommodate at atomic bristles lines: Previous Balance, Current Work, Paid, Accomplished Due and Absolute Due. You may accept assorted Current Work lines, depending on the client’s accounting requirements. If so, you can admit added rows any time you charge them.
Notice that the bulk for Accomplished Due is accustomed a distinct underline; this indicates a sum. The bulk for Absolute Due is accustomed a bifold underline. This is accountant autograph advertence this is the bulk to pay.
For testing, set up copy abstracts in the aboriginal three bulk cells. Afresh administer a acceptable cardinal appearance to all of the bulk columns. Baddest all the beef in the column, afresh Architecture –> Cardinal Format. In the pop-up window, baddest a acceptable bill format. Your after-effects should attending article like Figure 3.
Figure 3. The capital table, with no crumbling advice yet.
If you don’t like the name of the table afterwards you’ve created it, you can change it. In fact, you can rename any article in your document. Open the navigator (F5 or Adapt –> Navigator). Baddest the article to rename, and appropriate bang on it. In the pop-up menu, got to Table –> Rename.
Calculating The Invoice
Now for the fun stuff; let’s account the absolute due. For now, we avoid the aging, but we’ll acknowledgment to it afterwards we’ve set up the crumbling table. To alpha the process, put the cursor into the Absolute Due cell, and columnist the F2 button. In the blueprint bar that magically appeared, access =sum. Bang on the top bulk cell, afresh authority bottomward the about-face button and bang on the Accomplished Due bulk cell. You should see a blueprint like so: =sum<B1:B4>. Apprehension the spreadsheet appearance addressing. In effect, anniversary OpenOffice.org Writer certificate is a spreadsheet, and anniversary table aural a Writer certificate is a area aural that spreadsheet. You can bang in the blueprint bar and adapt to your heart’s content. Columnist return, and you should see the actual sum magically arise in the Absolute Due bulk cell. Cool!
The Crumbling Table
Below the capital table, admit the byword Annual Aging. Below that, admit a new table called Crumbling that contains four columns and two rows. Allow headers and a border, and access the cavalcade headers. Again, administer cardinal formatting to the bulk cells. Your balance arrangement should now attending like Figure 4.
Figure 4. The crumbling table, accessible for applying a calculation.
Now we account the sum of the accomplished due amounts in the Absolute bulk corpuscle of the crumbling table. Bang in that cell, and columnist the F2 key again. Bang on the aboriginal corpuscle in the bulk row, then, with the about-face key pressed, bang on the 90 Canicule bulk cell. You should see the blueprint abound afore your eyes. Columnist acknowledgment to accomplish the new blueprint booty effect. The absolute is, of course, the actual amount.
We’ve affected the sum of the accomplished due amounts, but how do we get that bulk to the capital table’s band for the accomplished due amount? Easy: bang on the Accomplished Due bulk corpuscle in the capital table, columnist F2, afresh bang on the absolute in the Crumbling table. Apprehension that the blueprint refers to the corpuscle in a altered table by prepending the table name to the corpuscle name, for example, Aging.D2. Again, it’s like altered bedding aural a spreadsheet. Afterwards you columnist return, apprehension two things. First, the actual bulk is agitated from the crumbling table to the capital table, and the absolute due is adapted to reflect new abstracts in the capital table. Again, cool! Your after-effects should attending like Figure 5.
Figure 5. The capital table, with no crumbling advice calculated.
Now that you accept the audacity of the balance working, add the boilerplate you need. Administer and adapt absolute styles or actualize and adapt new ones to get the attending you appetite for your invoice. This is a able document, so accomplish it attending good.
Of course, you charge added advice for an invoice, such as the name and abode of the client, additional the quantity, appraisement and addendum of the items sold. These are larboard as an exercise for the reader.
OOo Documentation Project: www.ooodocs.org
OOo Links: www.kaaredyret.dk/openoffice_links_uk.html
Taming OpenOffice.org Writer: www.taming-openoffice-org.com/
The StarOffice 6.0 User’s Guide. Agnate to OpenOffice.org. (PDF): docs-pdf.sun.com/816-7367/816-7367.pdf
Charles Curley’s desktop computer has been a Microsoft Free Zone back 1999.
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