Creating Papers in OpenDocument format

What's OpenDocument and Why?

The OpenDocument format (ODF) is a free, ISO-standardized format for documents (.odt file extension), spreadsheets (.ods), presentations (.odp), and more. Used widely throughout the world, ODF is supported by a variety of programs, including the free LibreOffice suite and

By choosing to work with free, open tools instead of proprietary programs you are sure that anybody can easily work with what you create and that you will be able to continue using free tools in the future, without feeling closed inside some software industry's silos.

The more advanced and standard programs to work with OpenDocument files at the present are the LibreOffice suite and We suggest LibreOffice.

Other references:

Creating JACoW documents in ODF

It is very easy to stray from the required layout and style when using WYSIWYG word processors. Authors should take care over the fonts used in the document, including fonts within graphics.

Fonts should be restricted to Times or TimesNew Roman, Symbol, and Zapf Dingbats.

There are two different templates for ODF, according to paper size: A4 and US Letter.
Be sure to use the one that corresponds to your (printer's) page format.
The templates are platform independent: that means that can be uses on whatever platform LibreOffice or OpenOffice work. They have been tested on Apple OS X, Windows, Linux. We suggest to use a recent version of LibreOffice/OpenOffice, i.e. 3.5+.

All text should be BLACK.

Using the .ott templates

The ODF JACoW templates are provided in ODF templates format, namely .ott. This means that whenever you open the file (by double clicking on it, for example), a new file is created - this will mean that the original template won't be modified.

You can install this template in the template directory of your LibreOffice/OpenOffice installation (please refer to the related information, for example here:, but it's not strictly necessary to do so. It is always possible to use any ODF template in any directory on your filesystem.

These ODF templates (.ott) contain macros. Only two features will be unavailable if you choose to disable macros--Full Page Width Macro (FullWidth) and Column Format Macro (TextColumns). These macros, reachable in the "JACoW" menu, can help you to easily set a section for an image that needs to use the full width of the page or to rest the two columns for general text. If you cannot or don't want to use these macros, you will always be able to manually set those parameters by referring to the JACoW page metrics (figure 1 in the template).

The template already contains text, figures, tables and images for your reference. You can easily mimic what is contained in the template to create a JACoW-compliant paper.

How to create the PDF

LibreOffice/OpenOffice has a wonderful "Export as PDF" tool. We recommend using that instead of the "Export directly as PDF" button. Be sure to compare the result with your original file, both onscreen and on paper. Some times the images don't appear very well on paper even if they look ok in onscreen.


  1. When inserting images, anchor them as characters to keep them in place when inserting/deleting text.
  2. Use the JACoW styles. One style for every object (Section heading, Text Body, Equation, etc.) has been created for you. You will be able to identify these styles among all the others since they always start with the word "JACoW" and are self-explanatory (e.g., JACoW Text Body indent).