release reflects growing use of


Author: Bruce Byfield, a maker of labels for envelopes, jewel cases, and other purposes, has released a package of more than 50 label template pages
for The labels, which represent most of’s standard prepress stock, are available in both 1.0 (.stw) and Open Document (.ott) format, and are released under the GNU General Public License and the Joint Copyright Agreement required for contributions. According to Russell Ossendryver, the company’s managing director, USA, the release of the labels is in direct response to the growing popularity
of has a history of competitive pricing and aggressive online marketing calculated to help it compete in in a field that has long been dominated by traditional storefronts such as Avery Office Supplies. Although the templates are the’s first venture in free and open source software, the move seems a natural one for the company.

Describing himself as “an avid Writer user,” Ossendryver explains that free software support makes increasing sense for “I am convinced that this community is getting larger and larger,” he says, “And at some point it will explode, especially as folk become more computer savvy. We want to be a part of it. Hopefully, we can benefit from this and at the same time help bring out higher quality open source labeling software solutions for the community.”

Speaking of the growing demand for support, Ossendryver says, “The requests seem to have picked up as of late. “Mostly from universities. We noticed a lack of label software resources for and other free licensing software users. So we expedited the release.”

Ossendryver expects that the templates will be refined as the company receives feedback from customers. He adds that will also design custom templates for customers who request them, particularly in the A5 paper size — a size currently represented in’s Label tool only by a few dozen templates from the German company Herma.

The usefulness of the labels is lessened by the fact that they are not available directly from’s Label tool. Instead, users must select Tools -> Mail Merge Wizard to use them. However, Ossendryver expects that a link to the labels will soon be added to the site, and hopes that the templates will be added to the next release.

Taking its inspiration from Microsoft’s gallery of label templates, is also developing a collection of label templates for Draw and KOffice, as well as additional CD and DVD labels for Writer. Ossendryver expects to release these additional templates by early February.

Bruce Byfield is a course designer and instructor, and a computer journalist who writes regularly for NewsForge, and IT Manager’s Journal.