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[News] Implications of Oracle's 'Fine' for Office Users of ODF

  • Subject: [News] Implications of Oracle's 'Fine' for Office Users of ODF
  • From: Roy Schestowitz <newsgroups@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Fri, 23 Apr 2010 12:45:51 +0100
  • Followup-to: comp.os.linux.advocacy
  • Newsgroups: comp.os.linux.advocacy
  • User-agent: KNode/4.3.1
Hash: SHA1

Oracle's ODF Plug-in Pricing: What's up with That?

,----[ Quote ]
| Moreover, itâs not just $90 youâll need to 
| fork over â the plug-in is only available 
| in packages of 100.
| Before you ask: (a) yes, an Office 2007 
| service pack released some time back by 
| Microsoft allows users of that version of 
| Office (and also of Office 2000, 2003 and 
| XP) to work with documents using ODF 1.0, 
| but not the most current version of ODF, 
| which is version 1.2; and (2) no, unlike 
| OpenOffice, the plug-in was never made 
| available by Sun as open source software.  
| For me, this raises three important 
| questions:
| 1. What is Oracle trying to accomplish?
| 2. Is it likely to work?
| 3. Given that Oracle controls 
| OpenOffice.org, developer of the most 
| widely used desktop direct implementation 
| of ODF, what does this indicate for the 
| future of that software?
| [...]
| Conclusion:  While the existence of 
| OpenOffice was essential to ODF in the 
| first few years after Peter Quinnâs 
| quixotic decision to support the rebel 
| standard, ODF is now past the point where 
| itâs future is dependent on it.  And in 
| point of fact, Sun was always at best a 
| flawed steward for the poster child 
| implementation of ODF, keeping too close 
| control over it to attract the kind of 
| broad individual and enterprise support 
| that flocked to contribute to Linux and 
| Apache, for example.
| Overall, though, I think that Oracle has 
| probably made a reasonable decision insofar 
| as its own self interest is concerned.  It 
| does leave open one tantalizing question 
| though, thatâs harder to read: does the 
| decision to charge for the plug-in indicate 
| that Oracle is taking its ODF-compliant 
| office suite unit seriously as a money 
| maker, and plans to put serious resources 
| behind it, or that it is simply imposing a 
| bean-counterâs discipline on the unit to 
| make money? 
| If itâs the former, than thatâs good news 
| for the ODF community, because OpenOffice 
| still has the most dedicated users, and the 
| most credibility, of all the alternatives.  
| And if the paid version gets traction, 
| there will be more third party software 
| developers, like those that create crucial 
| software, such as document management 
| tools, that will take the time to integrate 
| with it.  This is essential to creating a 
| true proprietary as well as an open source 
| competitor to Office.


Oracle Wants to Charge $9,000 for "Free" Download


It Starts: ORCL Charges $90 For ODF Plugin

,----[ Quote ]
| It seems entirely likely that this will 
| allow ORCL to say âWe gave it a fair shot, 
| but thereâs just no demand for it.â With 
| that, Oracle could abandon the ODF-
| translation field, leaving it to the 
| Microsoft-sponsored Clever Age plugins 
| project and the not-so-interoperable built-
| in functionality in recent updates to MS 
| Office.
| As an aside, is it likely that something 
| like this is coming to MySQL soon?
| What does this say for the OpenOffice.org 
| project? Obviously, no one knows yet. At 
| least, no one outside of Oracle knows.


Why I like Oracleâs $90 ODF Plugin

,----[ Quote ]
| At the risk of pouring oil on the fire, let 
| me say that I think this is an exciting 
| development for ODF.  We have three 
| solutions for providing ODF support in MS 
| Office:
|    1. Oracleâs Plugin
|    2. CleverAge Add-in
|    3. Microsoftâs native ODF support
| These three solutions have always varied in 
| terms of quality of conversion, versions of 
| MS Office supported, versions of ODF 
| supported, level of integration into MS 
| Office, etc.  And now they vary based on 
| price.  This is a good thing.  It is called 
| âcompetitionâ.  I like it.


Microsoft agrees to fix error in Polish browser ballot screen

,----[ Quote ]
| But there's a glitch in its Polish language 
| page, wrote Rob Weir, an ODF (Open Document 
| Format) architect with IBM, who wrote on 
| his personal blog that he was tipped off to 
| a problem.
| [...]
| Microsoft acknowledged the error.



8 Advanced OpenOffice.org Add-ons

,----[ Quote ]
| OpenOffice.org (OOo for short) is a great
| office suite for Linux and pretty much any
| other operating system, but can always use
| improvement. This is especially true for
| templates and clip art. Fortunately, the open
| source community provides many add-ons or
| extensions. Here's a look at eight different
| ones:
| English Templates by OxygenOffice
| One of the biggest features you might miss
| from Microsoft Office is their templates. This
| might especially be the case now that they
| have integrated the online user-submitted
| templates, giving you even more choices. In
| OOo, all you get is two presentation
| templates, an assortment of presentation
| templates, and a few wizards to help make
| letters, faxes, and agendas--the bare minimum.
| Then on a different menu (File > New), you'll
| find shortcuts to work with labels and
| business cards.

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