I was a big fan of GobeProductive when it came out in 1998, way ahead of its time back then.
However, it’s more that it has a lot of nostalgia going for it, but it’s 2014, time has moved on, and I think there are now better alternatives in the end, where CalligraOffice has the most similar spirit I think (everyhing is lightweight, live, approachable, easy to use, and has a modern, task centric look&feel), at least looking at the current office solutions landscape:
- KOffice/now Calligra has a Pages-inspired and modern, lightweight UI but needs some more work on that imho, also tends to crash here and there, but has decent OpenDocument support and is *very* fast and comparably small.
- LibreOffice is so bloated and has long standing bugs, just like MSOffice (which seriously improved over LibreOffice since the 2010 version, I must say) and the new Renaissance UI is still not there, but it is the most comprehensive free office suite out there.
- Softmaker Office is quite impressive and fast, but I didn't have enough time to really work with it, also it's not free but a port may be possible under similar conditions as for GoBe, and the code as well as feature set is more than up to date
- there's Papyrus, but only the authoring tool "Papyrus Autor" is left of it, but that seems pretty impressive and would be cool to have on Haiku (as a creative OS:)
As for translators, I think they’d still make a lot of sense, but only in a functional, practical way, translating office documents to text for indexing and searching, and for generating thumbnails for a preview in Tracker. So this would combine both ideas, extracting text content and generating images, in a useful way imho.
But we can use the excellent POI library for that, no need to port GoBe here.