Applies to openSUSE Leap 42.1

11 LibreOffice Impress, Base, Draw, and Math

Besides LibreOffice Writer and LibreOffice Calc, LibreOffice also includes the modules Impress, Base, Draw, and Math. With these you can create presentations, design databases, draw up graphics and diagrams, and create mathematical formulas.

11.1 Using Presentations with Impress

Use LibreOffice Impress to create presentations for screen display or printing. If you have used other presentation software, Impress makes it easy to switch. It works very similarly to other presentation software.

Impress can open and save Microsoft* PowerPoint* presentations. This means you can exchange presentations with PowerPoint* users, as long as you save your presentations in PowerPoint* format.

11.1.1 Creating a Presentation

There are multiple ways to create a new Impress document:

  • From Scratch.  To create a document from scratch, click File › New › Presentation and a new empty Impress document is created.

  • Wizard.  To use a standard format and predefined elements for your documents use a wizard. Click File › Wizards › Presentation and follow the steps.

  • Templates.  To use a template, click File › New › Templates and choose a template from Presentation Backgrounds. A new document based on the style of your selected template is created.

The following procedure describes how to create a presentation by using the wizard. Proceed as follows:

  1. Start LibreOffice.

  2. Select File › Wizards › Presentation

  3. Choose From template and select Presentation Backgrounds from the pop-up menu to set your preferred background and click Next.

  4. Select an output medium. The output medium is the form the final presentation will take, such as: Overhead sheet, Paper, a slideshow on a 4:3 Screen or a 16:9 Widescreen, among other choices.

    Select Preview for a thumbnail showing your choices. If all options are set according to your wishes, click Next.

  5. If you want to use effects for slide transitions, select the Effect you want to use and specify the Speed. The effect will be previewed immediately.

  6. Either use the default presentation type or choose Automatic to specify the amount of time each page displays and the length of the pause between presentations.

  7. If all options are set according to your wishes, click Create.

The presentation opens, ready for editing.

11.1.2 Using Master Pages

Master pages give your presentation a consistent look by defining what fonts and other design elements are used. Impress uses two types of master pages:

Slide Master

Contains elements that appear on all slides. For example, you might want your company logo to appear in the same place on every slide. The slide master also determines the text formatting style for the heading and outline of every slide that uses that master page, as well as any information you want to appear in a header or footer.

Notes Master

Determines the formatting and appearance of the notes in your presentation. Creating a Slide Master

Impress comes with a collection of preformatted master pages. Eventually, many users will want to customize their presentations by creating their own slide masters.

  1. Start Impress.

  2. To create a new empty presentation, select File › New › Presentation.

  3. Click View › Master › Slide Master.

    This opens the current slide master in Master View. The Master View toolbar appears.

  4. Right-click the left-hand panel, then click New Master.

  5. Edit the slide master until it has the desired look.

    A special feature of Master View is that you can edit outline styles by directly formatting the sample text on the slide.

  6. To finish editing slide masters, in the Master View toolbar, click Close Master View. Alternatively, choose View › Normal.

Tip: Collect Slide Masters in a Template

When you have created all of the slide masters you want to use in your presentations, you can save them in an Impress template. Then, any time you want to create presentations that use those slide masters, open a new presentation with your template. Applying a Slide Master

Slide masters can be applied to selected slides or to all slides in the presentation.

  1. Open your presentation.

  2. (Optional) If you want to apply the slide master to multiple slides, but not to all slides. Select the slides that you want to use that slide master applied to.

    To select multiple slides, pressCtrl in the Slides Pane while clicking the slides you want to use.

  3. In the Tasks Pane, open the Master Pages and click the master page you want to apply. The slide master is applied to the corresponding page(s).

    If you do not see the Task Pane, click View › Task Pane.

11.2 Using Databases with Base

LibreOffice includes the database module Base. Use Base to design a database to store many different kinds of information. From a simple address book or recipe file to a sophisticated document management system.

Tables, forms, queries, and reports can be created manually or by using convenient wizards. For example, the Table Wizard contains several common fields for business and personal use. Databases created in Base can be used as data sources, such as when creating form letters.

It is beyond the scope of this document to detail database design with Base. More information can be found at the sources listed in Section 8.10, “For More Information”.

11.2.1 Creating a Database Using Predefined Options

Base comes with several predefined database fields to help you create a database. A wizard guides you through the steps to create a new database. The steps in this section are specific to creating an address book using predefined fields, but it should be easy to follow them to use the predefined fields for any of the built-in database options.

The process for creating a database can be broken into several subprocesses: Creating the Database

  1. Start LibreOffice Base.

  2. Select Create a new database.

  3. You can choose between creating an HSQLDB or Firebird database.

    HSQLDB Embedded (default)

    This database format is also available in older versions of and LibreOffice. It depends on Java being installed on the computer.

    Firebird Embedded

    This database format can only be used in newer versions of LibreOffice. It does not depend on Java. When you do large database operations, Firebird can perform better.

  4. Proceed with Next.

  5. Click Yes, register the database for me to make your database information available to other LibreOffice modules and select the check boxes to Open the database for editing and Create tables using the table wizard. Then click Finish.

  6. Browse to the directory where you want to save the database, specify a name for the database, then click OK. Setting Up the Database Table

After you have created the database, if you have selected the Create tables using the table wizard check box, the table wizard opens. If you have not, click the Use Wizard to Create Table link in the Tasks area. Next, define the fields you want to use in your database table.

  1. In the Table Wizard, click Personal.

    The Sample tables list changes to show the predefined tables for personal use. If you had clicked Business, the list would contain predefined business tables.

  2. In the Sample tables list, click Addresses.

    The available fields for the predefined address book appear in the Available fields menu.

  3. In the Available fields menu, click the fields you want to use in your address book.

    You can select one item at a time, or you can shift-click multiple items to select them.

  4. Click the single arrow icon to move the selected items to the Selected fields menu.

    To move all available fields to the Selected fields menu, click the double right-arrow.

  5. Use the and keys to adjust the order of the selected fields, then click Next.

    The fields appear in the table and forms in the order in which they are listed.

  6. Make sure each of the fields is defined correctly.

    You can change the field name, type, maximum characters and whether it is a required field. For this example, leave the settings as they are, then click Next.

  7. Click Create a primary key, click Automatically add a primary key, click Auto value, then click Next. Creating a Form

Next, create the form to use when entering data into your address book.

  1. In the Form Wizard, click the double right-arrow icon to move all available fields to the Fields in the form list, then click Next.

  2. Select Add Subform if you want to add a subform, then click Next.

    For this example, accept the default selections.

  3. Select how you want to arrange your form, then click Next.

  4. Select The form is to display all data and leave all of the check boxes empty, then click Next.

  5. Apply a style and field border, then click Next.

    For this example, accept the default selections.

  6. Name the form, select the Modify the form option, then click Finish. Modifying the Form

After the form has been defined, you can modify the appearance of the form to suit your preferences.

  1. Close the form that opened when you finished the previous step.

  2. In the main window for your database, right-click the form you want to modify (there should be only one option), then click Edit.

  3. Arrange the fields on the form by dragging them to their new locations.

    For example, move the First Name field so it appears to the right of the Last Name field, and then adjust the locations of the other fields to suit your preference.

  4. When you have finished modifying the form, save it and close it. Further Steps

After you have created your database tables and forms, you are ready to enter your data. You can also design queries and reports to help sort and display the data.

Refer to LibreOffice online help and other sources listed in Section 8.10, “For More Information” for additional information about Base.

11.3 Creating Graphics with Draw

Use LibreOffice Draw to create graphics and diagrams. You can export your drawings to the most common vector graphics formats and import them into any application that lets you import graphics, including other LibreOffice modules. You can also create Adobe* Flash* (SWF) versions of your drawings.

Procedure 11.1: Creating a Graphic
  1. Start LibreOffice Draw.

  2. Use the toolbar at the bottom of the window to create a graphic.

  3. Save the graphic.

To embed an existing Draw graphic into a LibreOffice document, select Insert › Object › OLE Object. Select Create from file and click Search to navigate to the Draw file to insert. If you insert a file as OLE object, you can easily edit the object later by double-clicking it.

Procedure 11.2: Opening Draw From Other LibreOffice Modules

One particularly useful feature of Draw is the ability to open it from other LibreOffice modules, so you can create a drawing that is automatically imported into your document.

  1. From a LibreOffice module (for example, from Writer), click Insert › Object › OLE Object › LibreOffice 3.x Drawing › OK.

    The user interface of Writer will now be replaced by that of Draw.

  2. Create your drawing.

  3. Click in your document, outside the Draw frame.

    The drawing is automatically inserted into your document.

11.4 Creating Mathematical Formulas with Math

It is usually difficult to include complex mathematical formulas in your documents. To make this task easier, the LibreOffice Math equation editor lets you create formulas using operators, functions, and formatting assistants. You can then save those formulas as an object that can be imported into other documents. Math functions can be inserted into other LibreOffice documents like any other graphic object.

Note: Math is For Creating Mathematical Formulas

Math is not a calculator. The functions it creates are graphical objects. Even if they are imported into Calc, these functions cannot be evaluated.

To create a formula proceed as follows:

  1. Start LibreOffice Math.

  2. Click File › New › Formula. The formula window opens.

  3. Enter your formula in the lower part of the window. For example, the binomial theorem in LibreOffice Math syntax is:

    (a + b)^2 = a^2 + 2 a b + b^2

    The result is displayed in the upper part of the window.

  4. Use the Formula Elements window or right-click the lower part of the window to insert other terms. If you need symbols, use Tools › Catalog to, for example, insert Greek or other special characters.

  5. Save your document.

The result is shown in Figure 11.1, “Mathematical Formula in LibreOffice Math”:

Mathematical Formula in LibreOffice Math
Figure 11.1: Mathematical Formula in LibreOffice Math

It is possible to include your formula in Writer, for example. To do so, proceed as follows:

  1. Create a new Writer document or open an already existing one.

  2. Select Insert › Object › OLE Object in the main menu. The Insert OLE Object window appears.

  3. Select Create from file.

  4. Click Search to locate your formula. If needed, you can activate Link to file.

  5. Confirm with OK and your formula is inserted at the current cursor position.

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