LibreOffice Working On New Gestures Support

Written by Michael Larabel in LibreOffice on 26 August 2022 at 05:06 AM EDT. 1 Comment
While LibreOffice has supported some input gestures in the past like swiping and long presses with the GTK front-end as well as some Android and iOS specific additions, it looks like greater gesture support is on the way for this cross-platform, open-source office suite.

Landing this morning in LibreOffice Git is the infrastructure for rotate and zoom gestures. This infrastructure is being added to the LibreOffice Visual Class Library (VCL) so will work across the supported toolkits.

The zoom gesture should work across the GUI toolkits in a unified manner. That patch explains:
This change implements internal infrastructure to pass zoom gestures from low-level sources to the consuming GUI widgets. The API follows the established begin-update-update-...-end event convention that is used on various platforms.

The API should be enough to support both touchpad and touchscreen gestures, as long as the underlying low-level source exposes enough information. The hardware drivers usually expose touchpad gestures already recognized whereas touchscreen gestures come as a set of moving touchpoints and application needs to figure out their meaning itself. Many toolkits recognize both and offer a unified higher-level interface that can be used by us.

The VCL rotate gesture support is implemented similarly at the low-level and should work for both touchpad and touchscreen gestures.

With LibreOffice 7.4 having been released earlier this month, we're still in the early stages of the next release cycle so we'll see what more comes on the input gestures front as well as other features for this leading open-source office suite.
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