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[News] Malaysia Still Goes Shopping for Free Software, ODF

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Melaka City Council's OSS migration and savings

,----[ Quote ]
| In our ongoing series of Free and Open Source Software deployments in 
| Malaysia, OpenMalaysiaBlog is proud to highlight the efforts of the City 
| Council of Melaka. They were one of the first few departments to migrate 
| completely to OpenOffice.org (98% of their 300 hundred seats. They need to 
| retain a few copies of MS Office for some difficult proprietary files). Back 
| in 8 December 2006, the Mayor of Melaka, Y.Bhg. Dato’ Haji Zaini bin Mohd 
| Nor, presented "Successful Deployment Of OpenOffice In The Public Sector 
| Seminar" and was very enthusiastic about OpenOffice.org.       


After Microsoft's corruption in Malaysia, it's good to see it being abandoned.

"That particular meeting was followed by an anonymous smear campaign against
one of the TC members. A letter was faxed to the organization of the TC member
in question, accusing the TC member in question of helping politicize the
issue (which is, of course, untrue). I too had the dubious pleasure of hearing
first hand how Microsoft attempted to remove me from the TC (they did not
succeed, thanks to integrity and cojones of the organization I am affiliated

"If this unethical behaviour by Microsoft was not sufficiently despicable, they
did the unthinkable by involving politics in what should have been a technical
evaluation of the standard by writing to the head of the Malaysian standards
organization and getting its business partners to engage in a negative letter
writing campaign to indicate lack of support of ODF in the Malaysian market.
Every single negative letter on ODF received by the Malaysian standards
organization was written either by Microsoft, or a Microsoft business partner
or a Microsoft affiliated organization (Initiative for Software Choice and
                                        A Memo to Patrick Durusau

Days ago:

The State of Kedah moves to OpenOffice.org

,----[ Quote ]
| A case study submitted to the Open Source Competency Center by the Center of
| Information Technology, Office of the Chief Minister and State Secretary of
| Kedah, has indicated that OpenOffice.org has been installed in 70% of the
| computers in the Kedah state government agencies. There are currently 2,202
| installed seats and by the looks of it, the numbers will just keep rising!


The entire State of Pahang moves to OpenOffice.org

,----[ Quote ]
| Its just been made official that the State of Pahang is migrating all its
| productivity suites to OpenOffice.org. This succint memo from the State
| Secretary of Pahang entitled "Perlaksanaan Penggunaan Perisian OpenOffice.Org
| Di Semua Agensi dan Pentadbiran Negeri" (translated: "Implementation of
| OpenOffice.org suite in all State Agencies and Administrative centres")
| outlines the reasons for migrating, the benefits and how to proceed.



The Pikom Meeting About Microsoft's OOXML ... No! (bangs the table) Ecma 376!

,----[ Quote ]
| Doug noted that the guys on the opposite side of the table from Microsoft 
| (and (BANGS hand on table!) Ecma!) did not discuss any of the 23 comments 
| made by Malaysia for the BRM ... and he's right, we didn't. Again, speaking 
| for myself, prior to the meeting, I was sceptical that the "pro-OOXML" gang 
| would actually just concentrate on that. This was mainly because I didn't 
| know who would be attending on their side. I certainly did not expect that 
| Microsoft would bring Doug Mahugh, Oliver Bell, Dave Welsh and (BANGS hand on 
| table!) Jan van de Veld, former Sec-Gen of Ecma International. I fully 
| expected Microsoft to apply the Chewbacca Defense strategy, and therefore  
| figured that I must concentrate on my own Wookie-based defense.        


Reports: Malaysia unmoved in OOXML vote

,----[ Quote ]
| Minister ignored objections
| According to Open Malaysia, the Malaysian Industrial Standards Committee for 
| IT (ISC-G) took a vote on Mar. 27 to decide the country's stance on the 
| OOXML-ISO vote, with 13 disapprovals, five abstentions and only three 
| approvals.   
| By eventually taking the decision to abstain in the OOXML ISO ballot, Maximus 
| Ongkili, who is two weeks into the job as Minister of Science, Technology and 
| Innovation--following the country's Mar. 8 general elections--appeared to 
| have ignored the ISC-G's majority "disapprove" vote.    


OpenOffice.org and ODF adoption in Malaysia - thumbs up!

,----[ Quote ]
| Now, you can hold them to their word, as they update a Wiki page, informing 
| you about how many agencies are moving to OpenOffice.org. Big wins, once all 
| of the Malaysian government related agencies are on OpenOffice.org (open 
| source software in general). Again, read OpenOffice.org and ODF Adoption!   


Return of the Living Dead - Brainless Attack on MoSTI - Part Deux!!!

,----[ Quote ]
| I dont know what the attraction is, but somehow we all love the morbid 
| fascination of Zombies in action. First, Microsoft^H^H^H^H^HCompTIA hires Mr 
| Jan van der Beld, Ex-Ecma Secretary General, to fly all the way here in KL, 
| for an event supposedly about "good multiple standards".  There he challenges 
| us to find a better way to Fast Track large, immature vendor dependent 
| specifications. The answer is of course: "Don't do it." Later on that same 
| day, like a man possessed, he turns up at a PIKOM meeting only to rant and 
| thump tables.       
| Then today, in our fantastic broadsheet turned tabloid "The New Straits 
| Times" features a "Comment" by our so called "cooler head" Datuk Dr Mohd 
| Ariffin Aton entitled "Walking the Talk on neutrality policy". If you've 
| forgotten about him, you may be forgiven, but he is or rather WAS the CEO if 
| SIRIM Bhd.     


How to Royally Annoy National Bodies

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| Guide to future monopolists on how to alienate yourself from National Bodies:
|    1. Waste NBs time in reviewing monstrous draft specifications
|    2. Claim that these specs can do everything for anyone by standardising 
|    marketing material 
|    3. If you don't get your way at a certain level, lobby the superior above. 
|    Dont stop! Go all the way to the head of the nation if you think you can! 
|    4. Leak press stories to journalists to pressure Ministries to make a 
|    decision. Quick! 
|    5. Try to shut down TCs if actual technical work is done revealing issues 
|    with your plan 
|    6. Question Question Question everything (process, fairness, the system, 
|    members) when things dont go your way 
|    7. Otherwise create another TC with friendly experts
|    8. If the NB allows new members just by paying membership fees, encourage 
|    your business partners to join with marketing funds. Stack-stack-stack it 
|    high!  
|    9. Stalk decision makers, even if it means traveling around the globe with 
|    them 
|   10. Refuse changes in the spec especially if it breaks your product which 
|   you released prior 
|   11. Have private interviews with TC members in the guise of funding for 
|   their new projects/research grants/interoperability initiatives and 
|   conveniently talk about their position on your spec.  
|   12. Get your Business Partners to write in form letters. Some don't even 
|   bother to change the templates 
|   13. Attend TC meetings uninvited by fabricating business cards
|   14. Send Lawyers in to Technical Committee meetings who prefer not to 
|   engage in "high-school" debates 
|   15. Make rude and inaccurate statements against TC members in public


The Elephant in the Room - with a calling card.

,----[ Quote ]
| But to pass off a foreigner as a Malaysian organisation's representative? 
| That's really stretching it, dudes. It's not as bad as having someone from 
| Senegal representing another country, but it's still not particularly ... 
| appropriate.   
| [...]
| Which is also why there was an uneasy silence when Doug came back into the 
| room to remove his computer, and he gruffly said, "I think it's best that I 
| leave." I thought that was noble of him, and a great way to exit with 
| whatever dignity he had left. I don't think he would normally bend his ethics 
| to represent an organisation's national branch which he does not belong nor 
| contribute to, but we must all understand, that employees at Microsoft are 
|                                            ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
| all facing a really stressful time now.       
| ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
| They are fighting like their jobs depend on this, and unfortunately for 
| ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
| Microsoft as a brand, they are killing themselves. Bending their morals,
| ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ 
| burning their bridges which they have built so long and hard over the years, 
| and hurting so many people and organisations over this silly matter of a File 
| Format.    


Can I Have A Light, Doug?

,----[ Quote ]
| Here goes:
|    1. Doug, you are claiming that you wanted a technical debate with YK and 
|    yours truly. You never contacted us prior to the PIKOM meeting and never 
|    told me that you would be present at TC4. How can you claim that you 
|    wanted a technical debate when you never bothered to get in touch with the 
|    people you wanted to debate with? Your logic simply does not compute[4].    
|    2. Your blog post says "they threw me out before the meeting started". 
|    Well, no shit sherlock. If you turn up at a meeting without giving due 
|    notice of your nomination as an alternate representative of IASA, you 
|    really can't be surprised if they weren't too happy, eh? There are proper 
|    processes to follow in Malaysia's standards body and IASA flagrantly 
|    violated them.     
| [...]
| There you go. I'm not going to pursue this any further (but Doug, do feel 
| free to write another scathing post, I've got /dev/null all prepped up and 
| ready here). I just felt folk reading Doug's blog and OpenMalaysiaBlog should 
| be able to see this from another perspective. Specifically mine. Either that 
| or this is just another excuse for more sandiwara (translation: drama).    


Doug Mahugh really dislikes me. Boo hoo.



Dissecting the "Malaysian Halal Hub Open XML System"

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| So is it Malaysianising Microsoft, or is it Microsofting Malaysia? 
| Microsoft's paranoia and drive to make MSOOXML an international standard may 
| just be its own demise.  


Malaysia warms to OOXML ... ?

,----[ Quote ]
| With great "wins" like this, I always wondered why the Microsofties did not 
| trumpet these case studies of wonderful "industry acceptance" of MSOOXML any 
| louder? Its a gold-mine to announce that independent system vendors have 
| wholly adopted their spanking new specification? This is further proof that 
| ISO should ratify MSOOXML immediately with this worldwide support.    
| So is it "Well done, Microsoft Malaysia?" or is a timebomb just waiting to 
| explode ala Sweden? 

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