Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 15th Dec 2005 09:22 UTC, submitted by Andy Updegrove
Features, Office Bob Sutor from IBM, Alan Yates from Microsoft, Bill Sproull from Sun, Peter Quinn, MA CIO, and others sat elbow to elbow in the Massachusetts Senate Reading Room today and answered questions to a crowd of legislators, press and industry representatives about ODF and Microsoft's XML Reference Schema. Here's an unelaborated report of who said what, transcribed in real time as they said it, and a link to the full audio tape as well.
Order by: Score:
open process ?
by Anonymous on Thu 15th Dec 2005 12:08 UTC
Member since:

This is what the MS represented said at the forum:
"We are gratified by the reaction to our moving the schema to Ecma, which is beyond anyone's question an open process."

Can somebody please tell me what he means by open ? Does that mean that I can create a GNU licensed application by using this standard, without paying some kind of fee ? Who ultimately decides what new changes will be added to the standard, Microsoft or the ECMA

Reply Score: 1

RE: open process ?
by segedunum on Thu 15th Dec 2005 15:47 UTC in reply to "open process ?"
segedunum Member since:

Can somebody please tell me what he means by open ?

Absolutely nothing. Alan Yates is just bullshitting around, talking about the fact that Microsoft's XML format will converge with ODF (probably meaning Microsoft wants to assimilate and extinguish it into their own at some point) by which time he and Microsoft hopes that everyone will have just forgotten all about it and they can continue as normal with Microsoft Office.

Like all thoroughly obnoxious Microsoft speakers they spew a lot of drivel and hope no one will notice. They also make lots of assertive comments like "which is beyond anyone's question an open process", because if they say it assertively enough, well, it must be true mustn't it?! Note the words 'value', hints at a 'political agenda' with ODF and the side-stepping of issues:

Alan Yates: I was coming at that from a different point of view; we've looked at the comment record, and saw thousands of comments, many from Sun, and I assume that they were reflected in the final code.

Errrrr, right. So what does that mean?

The OASIS committee did not focus on the requirements, constraints, and experiences of Microsoft customers.

And considering that Microsoft is a member of OASIS, why didn't it focus on that?

I don't think it was wise of Linda Hamel to talk about XML, because it just plays into Microsoft's hands. XML == open as far as Microsoft is concerned (and they will happily ram it down your throat) even though we all know it isn't.

Who ultimately decides what new changes will be added to the standard, Microsoft or the ECMA

Microsoft, of course. The ECMA gets paid lots of money and keeps it's mouth shut. It's a woefully inadequate standards body which allows companies to keep tight control of their standards, which is why Microsoft keeps coming back for more.

Reply Score: 3

Microsoft are whores.
by Milo_Hoffman on Thu 15th Dec 2005 14:36 UTC
Member since:

>beyond anyone's question an open process.

I guess by anyone he means "anyone who is not a Microsoft employee".

And guess what. THERE IS NOT STANDARD YET FOR MS OFFICE files... there is only a commetee to start a process for starting a standard.

How about calling us back once the standard is real and we can talk? Now don't let the door hit you in the ass on the way out we are going to all talk about ACTUAL standard document formats now.

Reply Score: 2

by Snapper on Thu 15th Dec 2005 14:51 UTC
Member since:

My question is, why does MS always feel it necessary to create a new standard that they push if there is one already in the works? Seems like this happens all the time.

XML - OK, we got our version
ODF - OK, we got our version
Javascritp - OK, we got our version
JAVA - OK, we got our version.

In each case, they seem to want to be behind the wheel.

Reply Score: 1

by Anonymous on Thu 15th Dec 2005 15:23 UTC
Member since:

If they change the standard "just enough" then they can lock people into using "their" software of choice, not "your" software of choice.

This will inevitably include upgrades because I am sure the "open" standard will evolve for every version of Office.

And (correct me if I am wrong) OSS applications will not benefit from this "open" standard unless their is specific language which gives away IP in the technology (opens it up under GPL, yeah that'll happen.)

Reply Score: 0

Member since:

If you look closely you'll realise they mention a performance issue regarding XML.

This is such a trojan horse I can't believe people aren't noticing Microsoft intends to introduce their XML format and have people using it only to roll back to "standard Office format" (i.e.: .doc) because they'd be more productive. If the law so requires then it would be published as the open format, but the work in progress would be typed and saved in the proprietary format.

In other words: Microsoft would still hold its lock on business and government customers, because they'd make working with the open format slow as molasses on purpose and people would just naturally keep using the proprietary format for as-long-as-convenient, more likely for the whole process until it's publishing time.

-- meianoite

Reply Score: 0