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[News] [Rival] Op Ed: Microsoft Tries to Ruin ODF, But Will Fail

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Microsoft's Latest Kiss of Death

,----[ Quote ]
| That's how Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT) killed Netscape many moons ago. Embrace 
| this newfangled "Web browser" market with a new product. Extend the existing 
| Web standards with proprietary technologies like ActiveX. Extinguish the 
| competition by denying them access to those fancy new features. When it 
| works, this is a great way to build and maintain wide, alligator-filled 
| business moats.     
| It seems to me that Mr. Softy is up to his old tricks again. The target this 
| time is the OpenDocument standard, a free and open alternative to Microsoft's 
| own Office formats for text documents, spreadsheets, presentations, and more. 
| The standard's biggest proponent so far is Sun Microsystems (Nasdaq: JAVA) 
| and its StarOffice/OpenOffice software packages, but other alternatives like 
| Google (Nasdaq: GOOG) Documents, IBM's (NYSE: IBM) Lotus Symphony, and Corel 
| (Nasdaq: CREL) WordPerfect come with ODF support, too.      
| [...]
| Instead, Microsoft has put up a Web site full of "implementation notes" for 
| this new feature, which will be added in a service pack for Office 2007. 
| Office will write "additional data" into its files, and there 
| are "implementation variances" from the published, open standard -- all 
| according to a set of "implementation decisions."  We’ll have to wait on the 
| specifics, but this sounds eerily reminiscent of IE-versus-Netscape to me.     



Some thoughts on the Microsoft’s implementation of ODF

,----[ Quote ]
| Now you have Microsoft’s bellydancing and basically declaring that they, who
| sell the “best office suite on the market” (I don’t make that claim) will
| offer poor support on ODF because of product limitations. Am I the only one
| here feeling that Redmond is trying -again-to play games? Any additional
| information would be welcome at this stage, of course, but the market should
| pay close attention to this issue.
| I have hailed and declared myself positively satisfied the inclusion of
| Microsoft in the ODF committees at the OASIS consortium. I have read the
| contributions of its employees and they were useful and constructive. This
| being said, Doug’s blog leaves me with an odd taste in my mouth.
| To be frank, I feel that Doug has been looking for a way to tell us that
| Microsoft’s support of ODF will be crappy and that it was intended to be that
| way. I realize I have no substantial evidence of what I’m asserting here, but
| since when does Microsoft speak of the new features of MS Office with a sorry
| tone?


Compatibility, interoperability, and interchangeability

,----[ Quote ]
| I often find it amusing when people pull out a very significant sounding,
| obviously committee-written definition of “interoperability.” If I didn’t
| know better, I would have thought that the definition was written and then
| delivered on a stone tablet. Is this necessary, or is interoperability one of
| those things that you know when you see it?
| [...]
| With cloud computing becoming more and more important, people are correctly
| asking questions about standards. My sense is that virtually none of the
| cloud environments are interchangeable and that interoperability among them
| is sketchy, at best. Unless one provider ends up being overwhelmingly
| dominant, interoperability will need to be improved.


Microsoft spits out ODF plans for Office 2007 SP2

,----[ Quote ]
| Even the European Commission questioned Microsoft’s intentions. After all, it
| had been dogged by less-than-pretty grumbles from a range of opponents about
| the software giant’s campaign to get its contentious Office Open XML (OOXML)
| document format approved as an international standard at the second time of
| trying.
| EC regulators said they would investigate whether that announcement really
| did mean "better interoperability", allowing customers "to process and
| exchange their documents with the software product of their choice".


Microsoft Invites to ODF Workshop in Redmond

,----[ Quote ]
| Maybe this invitation has something to do with Microsoft's public "ODF has
| clearly won" statement at a recent event. Thus, if Microsoft has to support
| ODF in their products due to market demand, what ISV can still ignore
| supporting ODF? I guess none! Anyway, OpenOffice.org is just one
| implementation of ODF and is facing more than 1.2M downloads per week (!!!)
| on average (since the beginning of 2008) with most recent download numbers
| having been close to 2M.


BE, NL: governments will not use ISO OOXML

,----[ Quote ]
| Asked to comment on last week's ISO approval for OOXML, Fedict's chief IT
| architect, Peter Strickx, said: "There will have to be multiple
| implementations, in order for us not to become dependent on a single vendor.
| It will also have to be compatible with open standards that we already use,
| in this case Open Document Format ODF."


DE: German Foreign Ministry will not use ISO OOXML

,----[ Quote ]
| In the weeks prior to the second round of votes last September,
| irregularities were reported in the standard committees in many participating
| countries. These claims  continued until after the final discussion, in
| February and March this year.
| The European Commission has started an investigation into the allegations.
| The Commission sent a letter to all EU national standards committees in
| Europe, requesting information about the process. Sources at the Commission
| declined to comment, as the investigation is on-going and no official
| position has yet been adopted.

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