Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 6th Jul 2006 10:41 UTC
Features, Office Microsoft is giving in to the unrelenting pressure to be more open, particularly with regard to its Office Open XML file format and interoperability with the Open Document Format alternative. The company will announce July 6 that it has set up an open-source project to create a series of tools that allow translation between the OpenXML format and the ODF format, and which will be developed with partners. The Open XML Translator project, as it is known, will be posted on SourceForge, the open-source software development Web site.
Order by: Score:
We can all sleep at night again...
by bolomkxxviii on Thu 6th Jul 2006 11:43 UTC
bolomkxxviii
Member since:
2006-05-19

Now MS can claim compatibility while making it "sort of" work and not including it with MS Office. It will be a download from their website, not pushed as an update. Don't believe me? Just wait and see.

Reply Score: 5

Kroc Member since:
2005-11-10

"a set of tools". Sounds like second class inclusion to me. Just as long as they can write ODF support on the box, but make it as well hidden as possible, they will.

I suspect it will be an add-on or seperate converter program. I do very much doubt a simple Save-As will be made available.

Reply Score: 1

sappyvcv Member since:
2005-07-06

Probably for the same reason XPS and PDF export were removed. There's no conspiracy here. ODF export would probably be under export with everything else.

Reply Score: 1

no!
by sappyvcv on Thu 6th Jul 2006 11:44 UTC
sappyvcv
Member since:
2005-07-06

This is so unfair! They are just trying to crush competition!

Reply Score: 1

RE: no!
by Kroc on Thu 6th Jul 2006 15:32 UTC in reply to "no!"
Kroc Member since:
2005-11-10

You mean catch up?

Reply Score: 3

RE: no!
by Mystic TaCo on Thu 6th Jul 2006 16:49 UTC in reply to "no!"
Mystic TaCo Member since:
2005-09-13

Why is this unfair? The whole point of OpenSource is that it is open to anyone, including Microsoft.

Reply Score: 3

as long as...
by Terracotta on Thu 6th Jul 2006 11:54 UTC
Terracotta
Member since:
2005-08-15

... they are not giving any code we might as well prefer the OASIS plugin for office. The only advantage MS can give is that it knows better the ins and outs of openXML than any other (at least it should be). But as long as they leave the development to others they just provide division between two community driven efforts. Nice way. Sorry, I had hopes before reading the article but I'm dissapointed.

Reply Score: 5

RE: as long as...
by Earl Colby pottinger on Thu 6th Jul 2006 12:12 UTC in reply to "as long as..."
Earl Colby pottinger Member since:
2005-07-06

Now that is not clear to me. If it is 'openXML' why should MS know the 'ins and outs' better than anyone else?

Unless ........

MS just calls it openXML but the docs do not discuss all it's features or prameters.

And if I am reading this right, this is not a plugin that does the translation when you save or read a document with MS-Word like you can do with RTF docs, rather you have to invoke another program to translate a file before use. Way to go MS to make ODF look like a burden to the users.

Reply Score: 5

RE[2]: as long as...
by siimo on Thu 6th Jul 2006 18:58 UTC in reply to "RE: as long as..."
siimo Member since:
2006-06-22

Because MS wrote it from the ground up?

Author almost always knows better about his work.

Reply Score: 3

Yeah, sure
by Shaman on Thu 6th Jul 2006 12:16 UTC
Shaman
Member since:
2005-11-15

If Microsoft provides a tool which will translate 100% of features in either direction, I may die of shock. My guess is that they will release a half-assed broken tool and then blame any incompatibilities on ODF.

It's the Microsoft way.

Reply Score: 5

RE: Yeah, sure
by RGCook on Thu 6th Jul 2006 16:52 UTC in reply to "Yeah, sure"
RGCook Member since:
2005-07-12

Quoting from the article:

"This project is all about transparency, as there is no translator that is perfect. OpenXML and ODF are very different formats and some hard decisions are going to have to be made when translating from one format to another, like where we have OpenXML features that are not supported in ODF," he said.

So it would appear that there are fundamental differences in the formats. But the underlying tone is "We have a better format and we'll support an effort to translate but the quality of the translation isn't going to be great.

It's basically a "we will help" but be warned, if you want real quality, just stick with us".

This is not cooperation, this is manipulation. To truly cooperate, they would support ODF versions that implement features that the standards body believes are warranted and provide a real translator.

I am disappointed in MS's position but they are, after all, protecting their cash cow (Office). If folks simply jumped on OOo fell swoop, ODF's position would strengthen and the 800 lb Gorilla would have to budge.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Yeah, sure
by DrillSgt on Thu 6th Jul 2006 17:23 UTC in reply to "RE: Yeah, sure"
DrillSgt Member since:
2005-12-02

"I am disappointed in MS's position but they are, after all, protecting their cash cow (Office). If folks simply jumped on OOo fell swoop, ODF's position would strengthen and the 800 lb Gorilla would have to budge."

You forgot to add that as the companies changed, they would have to spend millions of dollars to convert existing documents, and that they would lose some money on top of that by not being able to deal with some customers that would only have Office. OOo is good, but there is a painstaking conversion of documents to the OOo cpommand set.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Yeah, sure
by RGCook on Fri 7th Jul 2006 02:00 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Yeah, sure"
RGCook Member since:
2005-07-12

Yes, which underscores my point that as long as this is the case, MS does not have to cooperate completely. Although we, the users would benefit if they did, we are somewhat at their mercy having fallen victim to the Office monopoly. This breeds the kind of contempt folks have for MS that you read about on sites like this daily.

I wonder how it feels, to be so popular and yet despised by so many. Is there a moral or ethical issue at play here. Not saying there is, but it makes me wonder.

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: Yeah, sure
by hal2k1 on Fri 7th Jul 2006 11:24 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Yeah, sure"
hal2k1 Member since:
2005-11-11

I for one am very pleased the Microsoft has taken this step.

At last there is at least the possibility of cross-platform document interchange and future-proofing of digitally stored documents.

This URL pretty much sums up my take on this move by Microsoft:

http://www.osia.net.au/content/view/full/532

It might seem ironic to Microsoft, but this move towards open standards and away from lock-in is the very thing that may allow me to consider using Microsoft products again. If I don't have to avoid the lock-in, then I no longer have to avoid Microsoft products.

If Microsoft try to still get a lock-in via a backdoor means, then I will be back to avoiding their products once again. But, for the time being, this move looks positive, and I applaud Microsoft for doing it.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Yeah, sure
by eMagius on Fri 7th Jul 2006 14:23 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Yeah, sure"
eMagius Member since:
2005-07-06

I wonder how it feels, to be so popular and yet despised by so many. Is there a moral or ethical issue at play here.

Nah, just a zealotry issue. It wouldn't matter if Microsoft was as kind as Mother Teresa, gave away their products for free, had a rock-solid security record, and was the foremost champion of open standards -- the Linux fundamentalists would still be on the warpath, spreading FUD, making mountains out of molehills, and decrying the "evil empire."

Reply Score: 1

RE: Yeah, sure
by tomcat on Thu 6th Jul 2006 16:57 UTC in reply to "Yeah, sure"
tomcat Member since:
2006-01-06

It's an open source project. It can always be modified to do whatever translations are necessary.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Yeah, sure
by MollyC on Thu 6th Jul 2006 17:32 UTC in reply to "Yeah, sure"
MollyC Member since:
2006-07-04

If Microsoft provides a tool which will translate 100% of features in either direction, I may die of shock.

So would I, since ODF doesn't support 100% of the OpenXML features.

Reply Score: 3

This is garbage!
by Windows Sucks on Thu 6th Jul 2006 12:17 UTC
Windows Sucks
Member since:
2005-11-10

A translator. Meaning to use it with Office you will have to convert the file to their OpenXML format. No one is gonna want to do that! That takes time and is a headace!

As always they want to do just enough so they won't lose any business and wont be sued, but at the same time you still will not be able to open a ODF file in Office!

Bums!

If they have the better product then why not make it so you can use ODF no problem!? Cause they know people will flock to other products! And they won't be able to charge $200 to $400 for the stupid suite any more!

Reply Score: 5

RE: This is garbage!
by deathshadow on Thu 6th Jul 2006 12:20 UTC in reply to "This is garbage!"
deathshadow Member since:
2005-07-12

>> A translator. Meaning to use it with Office you will have to convert the file to their OpenXML format. No one is gonna want to do that! That takes time and is a headace
Oh, come off it - like they aren't going to inline a version into office working like EVERY OTHER document filter...

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: This is garbage!
by Windows Sucks on Thu 6th Jul 2006 12:33 UTC in reply to "RE: This is garbage!"
Windows Sucks Member since:
2005-11-10

Um I think Microsoft can clear that up! :

Jason Matusow, Microsoft's director of standards affairs, noted that Microsoft was not contributing code or providing architectural guidance for the Open XML Translator project.

I doubt that MS is going to include this "filter" in Office. You gonna have to go out and get it. On top of that they are making it very clear that it's not going to work very well translating between the two, because OpenXML is going to have SOOO many more features (They claim)

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: This is garbage!
by sappyvcv on Thu 6th Jul 2006 13:00 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: This is garbage!"
sappyvcv Member since:
2005-07-06

You think a format that has been worked on for well over a decade isn't going to be more refined and have more features than a format which is fairly new? If so, take your goggles off buddy.

Edited 2006-07-06 13:01

Reply Score: 0

RE[4]: This is garbage!
by Windows Sucks on Thu 6th Jul 2006 13:14 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: This is garbage!"
Windows Sucks Member since:
2005-11-10

Wow, thought Open XML wasn't even out yet? Maybe I am missing something.

Yes Open XML will have more features but only because MS has the ability to roll up features from its old formats into this one. But that has nothing to do with age, just full access to its own file formats.

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: This is garbage!
by sappyvcv on Thu 6th Jul 2006 13:29 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: This is garbage!"
sappyvcv Member since:
2005-07-06

Thank you for proving my point.

Open XML is just the structure, but all the same features from previous versions will still be in there. The features they've had over a decade to work on.

How does that have nothing to do with age?

Reply Score: 2

RE[6]: This is garbage!
by Windows Sucks on Thu 6th Jul 2006 13:39 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: This is garbage!"
Windows Sucks Member since:
2005-11-10

That is not actually true. If OpenXML was just a structure for the old file formats then it would not be open at all (Being that the old file formats are not open) and would not pass any open standards tests.

Microsoft will have something that will translate the old file formats into OpenXML and retain most of the features of old file formats. Most likely a built in Translator similar to the one we are talking about now, but it wil be a part of office no problem.

Reply Score: 5

RE[7]: This is garbage!
by sappyvcv on Thu 6th Jul 2006 14:04 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: This is garbage!"
sappyvcv Member since:
2005-07-06

What are you talking about? What does the openness have to do with the features? DOC and OpenXML are just formats, structures.

OpenXML will likely inherit all the features DOC contains.

I don't see why you're not understanding all of this.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: This is garbage!
by ma_d on Thu 6th Jul 2006 15:17 UTC in reply to "RE: This is garbage!"
ma_d Member since:
2005-06-29

Like their sxw filter right? Microsoft hasn't been adding new filters for competing programs since Corel fell from its high place.

He's absolutely right. I bet they could have written an ODF filter in the time they spent debating to do this translation project.

Reply Score: 4

OH COME ON!!!
by deathshadow on Thu 6th Jul 2006 12:18 UTC
deathshadow
Member since:
2005-07-12

Like you didn't see this coming... Most of you are probably too young to remember this, but there was a time when Word only opened word documents, Wordperfect only opened Wordperfect documents, and Wordstar only handled plaintext - and getting text between them was a nightmare.

WHO was the first company to allow you to open competing companies file formats? MICROSOFT. Have you ever LOOKED at the sheer volume of file format filters available in Office?

I would have been shocked if the next generation office DIDN'T include a ODF filter, at LEAST on the import side. EXPORT is going to be the fun part, as there's still a LOT of MS word features that don't even EXIST in the ODF spec.

Reply Score: 5

RE: OH COME ON!!!
by l3v1 on Thu 6th Jul 2006 13:18 UTC in reply to "OH COME ON!!!"
l3v1 Member since:
2005-07-06

Have you ever LOOKED

Yup.


office xp:
- in: doc, excel, outlook, rtf, lotus, text, wordperfect, works
- out: doc (win/max), html, rtf, text, wordperfect, works

oo.org writer:
- in: from just the text document list: odt, sxw, doc, rtf, starwriter, html, docbook xml, wordperfect, jtd, wps
- out: odt, sxw, doc, rtf, starwriter, text, html, docbook xml, word2k3 xml, pdf

Reply Score: 4

RE: OH COME ON!!!
by JonPryor on Thu 6th Jul 2006 13:21 UTC in reply to "OH COME ON!!!"
JonPryor Member since:
2005-07-29

EXPORT is going to be the fun part, as there's still a LOT of MS word features that don't even EXIST in the ODF spec.

By that same logic, HTML export will be fun, because there are a lot of MSWord features that don't exist in HTML.

Yet MSWord still provides HTML support (you'll instead get a dialog warning you that some features used in your document aren't supported by HTML/whatever format you're saving as).

There's no problem with not being able to support everything MSWord supports in every file format MSWord imports/exports to. That's already the case. The problem is that Microsoft still refuses to "properly" support ODF, as it does for many other formats (HTML, WordPerfect, RTF...).

Reply Score: 5

RE[2]: OH COME ON!!!
by deathshadow on Thu 6th Jul 2006 14:53 UTC in reply to "RE: OH COME ON!!!"
deathshadow Member since:
2005-07-12

>> By that same logic, HTML export will be fun, because there are a lot of MSWord features that don't exist in HTML. Yet MSWord still provides HTML support (you'll instead get a dialog warning you that some features used in your document aren't supported by HTML/whatever format you're saving as).

...and I expect it to work about as well, where it screws up even in IE on the auto-replaced characters, screws up in Firefox and Opera thanks to all the non-standard CSS, and in general doesn't work worth a damn (to the point it generally takes less time to get GOOD html out of it by exporting to .txt and adding it by hand)

In other words, it'll be supported, but it will also work like CRAP.

Reply Score: 3

v RE[2]: OH COME ON!!!
by deathshadow on Thu 6th Jul 2006 19:37 UTC in reply to "RE: OH COME ON!!!"
RE[3]: OH COME ON!!!
by MollyC on Thu 6th Jul 2006 22:39 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: OH COME ON!!!"
MollyC Member since:
2006-07-04

I like how you guys keep moving the goal posts.

First, you beg Microsoft to add ODF support. Then when they do, you whine because you think they'll "extend" it or it'll "work like CRAP". I guess the demands that Microsoft add ODF support were disingenuous to begin with (you never thought Microsoft would actually do it, and now that they have, you don't know what arguments to make against it, so you grasp at straws).

How will this "work like CRAP" when its a BDS project that OSS devs will be contributing to (Microsoft isn't writing the code)?

BTW, did you know that OO.o has already "extended" ODF for their own purposes?

Reply Score: 4

RE[4]: OH COME ON!!!
by MechR on Thu 6th Jul 2006 23:28 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: OH COME ON!!!"
MechR Member since:
2006-01-11

"BTW, did you know that OO.o has already "extended" ODF for their own purposes?"

AAMOF, I haven't heard. Linky?

Reply Score: 1

RE[5]: OH COME ON!!!
by Jemm on Fri 7th Jul 2006 08:07 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: OH COME ON!!!"
Jemm Member since:
2005-07-25

"One area I'm going to be interested to follow is how to map features that aren't specified in the ODF spec. OpenOffice has actually made the decision to extend the spec in ways that don't actually appear to be allowed (like with numbering formats), and I'm not sure if that's the right way to go. "

http://blogs.msdn.com/brian_jones/archive/2006/07/05/657510.aspx

Reply Score: 3

RE[4]: OH COME ON!!!
by Shkaba on Fri 7th Jul 2006 19:47 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: OH COME ON!!!"
Shkaba Member since:
2006-06-22

I like how you keep on supporting MS even when they shift their positions completely. Demands for MS to implement ODF support can not disingenious for the simple reason that if an ISO accepted standard is adopted by all software manufacturers the only competing qualities to distinguish competing products would be reduced to the price and reliability. Guess who sucks in that area. To say "I will support ODF" and then turn around and "start a project" for somebody else to work on and throw some money at it before turning your back to it ,is VERY disingenious to say the least. This looks more like bying some time (and time is what MS seems to need lots of, lately) and appearing to support an ISO approved standard until they can be in a position to submit their own request for standard approval.

Reply Score: 1

RE[5]: OH COME ON!!!
by sappyvcv on Fri 7th Jul 2006 19:55 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: OH COME ON!!!"
sappyvcv Member since:
2005-07-06

What's wrong with changing positions?

"More and more of our customers have been asking for it, so we are going to make an effort to support it now."

What is wrong with that?

See, if they had started the project and worked on it themselves, people would make accusations of embrace/extend/extinguish, half-assed effort, etc.

So what's better than simply financially supporting an OPEN SOURCE project to do it?

I just can't understand how you're finding negative here. Again, it's open source. It's the BSD license. Anyone can take the code as it is now and continue developing it.

Christ.

Reply Score: 1

RE[6]: OH COME ON!!!
by Shkaba on Fri 7th Jul 2006 21:56 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: OH COME ON!!!"
Shkaba Member since:
2006-06-22

What's wrong with changing positions?

Fundamentally there is nothing wrong with changing positions, providing that it is sincere and not just for the sake of PR, desperately trying to prevent further erosion of customer base, and for the purpose of bying time. What makes me very doubtfull about this initiative is MS push to obtain ISO for "OpenXML". What benefit is there to having two standards? Look at metric and imperial standards, isn't the existance of the two just a source for confusion and costly mistakes(NASA)?. If ODF indeed presents some limitations why not join in and make it better for every one's benefit ... Instead MS chooses, like always, to break established practices (ie PATH in unix and windows) and re-invent the wheel albeit a crooked one but MS-wheel nonetheless

Reply Score: 1

RE[7]: OH COME ON!!!
by sappyvcv on Fri 7th Jul 2006 23:15 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: OH COME ON!!!"
sappyvcv Member since:
2005-07-06

Ok, what don't you understand here?

There wasn't a high customer demand originally, so they didn't want to do it.

There became more of a demand for it and they started to realize that more and more customers would be asking for it, so they decided to go ahead with it.

It's driven by customer demand and that's how it should be sometimes.

Reply Score: 1

RE[7]: OH COME ON!!!
by hal2k1 on Sat 8th Jul 2006 08:30 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: OH COME ON!!!"
hal2k1 Member since:
2005-11-11

//What benefit is there to having two standards? Look at metric and imperial standards, isn't the existance of the two just a source for confusion and costly mistakes(NASA)?.//

I don't find it a problem when there are two standards if institutions just choose the sensible one. In the case of metric and imperial, that is a no-brainer - just use metric throughout and consistently.

Similarly for office documents - again a no-brainer. Just use the one that carries the best guarantee of no lock-in to a single source supplier. Choose the most open and unencumebered one. Choose the one designed from the ground up for platform-independence.

Something tells me though that the US will choose the opposites. Their track record in no-brainer choices such as these so far is not good at all.

Edited 2006-07-08 08:30

Reply Score: 1

RE: OH COME ON!!!
by alcibiades on Thu 6th Jul 2006 15:58 UTC in reply to "OH COME ON!!!"
alcibiades Member since:
2005-10-12

"Like you didn't see this coming... Most of you are probably too young to remember this, but there was a time when Word only opened word documents, Wordperfect only opened Wordperfect documents, and Wordstar only handled plaintext - and getting text between them was a nightmare."

Not only that, children, but let me tell you, once upon a time you could only buy some kinds of music with one company's software, and then if you wanted to listen to it, you had to buy their player to play it on. Weird, you say?

I know, it was a very funny world we old people grew up in.....

Reply Score: 1

let the format wars begin.
by SEJeff on Thu 6th Jul 2006 14:00 UTC
SEJeff
Member since:
2005-11-05

According to Microsoft, ODF is an inferior file format to OpenXML:
http://www.networkworld.com/news/2006/010906-odf.html?page=2

The sad part is that there is nothing "open" at all about OpenXML. Also, now that ODF is a published ISO standard, it is likely that ISO will not approve *another* office document standard and instead leave MS out in the cold.

Reply Score: 4

RE: let the format wars begin.
by Mystic TaCo on Thu 6th Jul 2006 16:57 UTC in reply to "let the format wars begin."
Mystic TaCo Member since:
2005-09-13

What would need to be different about OpenXML to make you believe it is Open?
- There is a publicly available specification detailing the entire format
- There is no restriction on who can read or write it (note the BSD licencing of this component!)
- It has been submitted to ISO for consideration as a standard

There is an important distinction between Office, which is proprietary code, and the OpenXML file format, which isn't.

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: let the format wars begin.
by SEJeff on Thu 6th Jul 2006 18:13 UTC in reply to "RE: let the format wars begin."
SEJeff Member since:
2005-11-05

Microsoft likes to "embrace" standards and "extend" them as to break other things. A good example would be the Microsoft Java that broke things and pissed off Sun or the way Internet Explorer has it's own idea of what web standards should be like. If the "standard" is entirely controlled by Microsoft, I have trouble seeing what is standard about it as they have played this game everytime.

Open Standards care about the consumer, not the producer. Microsoft actively uses predatory business techniques and overwhelming marketing to make consumers *think* they are using open standards when they are in fact using standards EXTENDED by Microsoft.

Call me biased as I write this post from my Ubuntu / Xgl hardware accelerated desktop, but I see it as morally wrong what they do to smaller businesses.

Reply Score: 5

Mystic TaCo Member since:
2005-09-13

I understand your frustration. There are a few things that are different in this case though:

1) Yes, MS has taken the extension tack in the past on some technologies (but Java is not a standard)
2) This is not one of those cases. In this case MS has designed a new technology from the ground up. OpenXML is similar to ODF in function, but the technologies are distinct.
3) In none of those other cases did MS attempt to open or share its implementation through the ISO

I think my quesion is still valid; why do you feel that the current process is not open?

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: as long as...
by Nathan O. on Thu 6th Jul 2006 14:06 UTC
Nathan O.
Member since:
2005-08-11

I think the implication is that they've spent more time with it, so they should have the most familiarity. If you write something, you probably know about it more than other people, even if it's free and open.

Reply Score: 1

Strange...
by ma_d on Thu 6th Jul 2006 15:18 UTC
ma_d
Member since:
2005-06-29

They're going to put these in as special menu items... I think this is probably the oddest thing I've ever heard of. They have a system built to allow file filters and they're ignoring it?

Reply Score: 5

v RE: Strange...
by sappyvcv on Thu 6th Jul 2006 15:47 UTC in reply to "Strange..."
That does it!!!
by bolomkxxviii on Thu 6th Jul 2006 15:21 UTC
bolomkxxviii
Member since:
2006-05-19

OK, I have had enough of all this. I am going back to Multimate and VP Planner.

Reply Score: 1

My bad
by bolomkxxviii on Thu 6th Jul 2006 15:30 UTC
bolomkxxviii
Member since:
2006-05-19

Microsoft to Support OpenDocument
By Nate Mook, BetaNews
July 6, 2006, 2:19 AM
In a surprise move, Microsoft is bending to pressure from governments and will sponsor an open source project to build tools that enable conversion between its Open XML formats in Office 2007 and OpenDocument (ODF). The forthcoming Office suite will also support an add-in for saving directly to ODF.

OK, so I don't have to go back to Multimate.

Reply Score: 2

RE: My bad
by Earl Colby pottinger on Sat 8th Jul 2006 00:50 UTC in reply to "My bad"
Earl Colby pottinger Member since:
2005-07-06

What bad. Did you not notice that the add-in claims to save ODF but there is no mention of loading ODF docs.

Personlly, if I was MS I would have done it the other way round (load, but no save) but the fact you need a separate tool one way and no tool the other way is sure to grate some nerves.

Reply Score: 1

Has anyone..
by JacobMunoz on Thu 6th Jul 2006 15:39 UTC
JacobMunoz
Member since:
2006-03-17

Has anyone ever looked at what MS considers to be 'good' XML?
It makes one want to shoot one's self in the face.

I haven't seen the latest openXML from the inside - but I shudder when I remember what steaming pile Office laid when I tried 'Save As... XML'. Ughh..

It was like XML got molested.

On the other hand, I can almost admire their ability to take something so good and well-intentioned as XML and bastardize it into their own demonic spawn... almost.

Reply Score: 5

RE: Has anyone..
by Sphinx on Thu 6th Jul 2006 17:38 UTC in reply to "Has anyone.."
Sphinx Member since:
2005-07-09

Thanks, I was too stunned to respond.

Reply Score: 1

Huh huh, and pigs do fly.
by euank on Thu 6th Jul 2006 15:42 UTC
euank
Member since:
2006-01-02

Getting the filter installed and working on every PC will probably only work with manual installation, a 100m hurdle egg and spoon race with triple jump and water hazard. Followed with a lengthy 2000-word EULA update that musted be scrolled to the bottom before the OK button enables.

That is assuming anyone gets commit rights to the sourceforge project, let alone actually starts working on it. Considering all it is, is an empty project. Perhaps it's an effort to dilute the already in progress efforts?

Reply Score: 1

Simple..
by CVDpr on Thu 6th Jul 2006 18:49 UTC
CVDpr
Member since:
2005-10-17

Windows users use XML.
Linux users use ODF.

Reply Score: 0

RE: Simple..
by somebody on Thu 6th Jul 2006 20:31 UTC in reply to "Simple.."
somebody Member since:
2005-07-07

Windows users use XML.
Linux users use ODF.


???

So all should use XML? ODF is nothing but a zipped bunch of XML files.

Just try renaming something.odt to something.zip and open with archiver. You might be surprised.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Simple..
by n4cer on Thu 6th Jul 2006 21:12 UTC in reply to "RE: Simple.."
n4cer Member since:
2005-07-06

So all should use XML? ODF is nothing but a zipped bunch of XML files.
Just try renaming something.odt to something.zip and open with archiver. You might be surprised.


I think he knows that, but he should've said OpenXML instead of just XML to be clearer. I think his point is that everyone can use their format of choice and convert when necessary. While basically true, there will still be caveats for some users in conversions from OXML -> ODF, as covered above by previous posters.

Reply Score: 1

ok
by deathshadow on Thu 6th Jul 2006 19:38 UTC
deathshadow
Member since:
2005-07-12

Not sure WHY or even HOW that double posted...

Reply Score: 1

RE[7]: This is garbage!
by CAPSLOCK2000 on Thu 6th Jul 2006 21:07 UTC
CAPSLOCK2000
Member since:
2006-07-06

@Windows Sucks
As far as I know OpenXML didn't pass any open standards tests yet. They are trying to get an ECMA qualification. They might become a standard, but not an _open_ standard.

Reply Score: 0

RE[8]: This is garbage!
by n4cer on Thu 6th Jul 2006 21:17 UTC in reply to "RE[7]: This is garbage!"
n4cer Member since:
2005-07-06

As far as I know OpenXML didn't pass any open standards tests yet. They are trying to get an ECMA qualification. They might become a standard, but not an _open_ standard.

It will be an open standard. The format is controlled by Ecma, several organizations have/are contributing to it, and the draft spec is currently freely available -- as will be the final spec. It will soon go to ISO where they will then take over stewardship of the format.

Reply Score: 3

CAPSLOCK2000
Member since:
2006-07-06

Everyone seems to forget something. That this project is BSD licensed, does not mean that MS will accept patches from anyone else. If they can get an advantage by not patching a bug, why would they accept the patch?
Of course the source could be forked, but what is the point? There is half a dozen projects dedicated to decoding .doc files on Freshmeat right now. You are probably better of joining one of those then trying to work with Microsoft.

Reply Score: 0

n4cer Member since:
2005-07-06

Everyone seems to forget something. That this project is BSD licensed, does not mean that MS will accept patches from anyone else. If they can get an advantage by not patching a bug, why would they accept the patch?

Microsoft isn't directly running the project. They are financing it. They already have a big advantage in that ODF can't represent legacy Office files with full fidelity. It also doesn't standardize some features used by businesses currently, leaving them to wait for subsequent versions if they want to use ODF. MS doesn't need to deny patches to have an advantage.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Simple..
by Finalzone on Thu 6th Jul 2006 23:36 UTC
Finalzone
Member since:
2005-07-06

This is an example about a statement that does not know the context. We are talking about open format that has nothing to do with the operating systems.

ODF makes sense because it uses the existing W3C standard that can be understood by web developers while OpenXML feels messy.

Reply Score: 1

How would this work anyway?
by Rayz on Fri 7th Jul 2006 08:29 UTC
Rayz
Member since:
2006-06-24

At the end of the day, what folk want is their documents to look the same, no matter what program is used to render them.

Will someone tell me how any XML format will help with this?

ODF and OpenXML simply describe the structure of the document; unless all the Office apps use a common document renderer, they're still going to be differences from one package to another.

I've yet to see any program render a Word document exactly as it was written; especially when you start adding in graphics, tables, watermarks, drop shadows ....

Reply Score: 2

None Event
by segedunum on Sat 8th Jul 2006 23:30 UTC
segedunum
Member since:
2005-07-06

Microsoft is not supporting ODF. Read the announcement and download the converter and it becomes apparent what it does. It will allow you to convert ODF documents to Open XML, and allow Office to open ODF documents, but what it will not do is convert Open XML and existing Office documents to ODF or allow Office to save to ODF. The command line converter is pretty indicative of how they want to handle ODF. In other words, ODF is not handled natively, it's a one-way process and it's complete BS.

It's pretty much as I expected. This is the standard way Microsoft handles what it considers to be alien formats it thinks are not beneficial to maintaining its monopoly.

Edited 2006-07-08 23:42

Reply Score: 1

RE: None Event
by hal2k1 on Sun 9th Jul 2006 02:17 UTC in reply to "None Event"
hal2k1 Member since:
2005-11-11

//Microsoft is not supporting ODF. Read the announcement and download the converter and it becomes apparent what it does. It will allow you to convert ODF documents to Open XML, and allow Office to open ODF documents, but what it will not do is convert Open XML and existing Office documents to ODF or allow Office to save to ODF. The command line converter is pretty indicative of how they want to handle ODF. In other words, ODF is not handled natively, it's a one-way process and it's complete BS.//

If this is true, then I will have to withdraw my support for this move by Microsoft, and once again recommend avaoiding all Microsoft products because of the attempts by Microsoft at lock-in.

When will Microsoft get it through their heads? Their attempts to lock people in and to have them use only their proprietary formats are the very actions that will drive people away.

If they were straightforward and supported open formats and standards properly and fully, then people could and often would use their products.

It is very simple really. If there is only a single-source supplier for a product, then I can't use it. If OTOH a supplier makes good products and is prepared to compete with other suppliers in an open market, then I will support their product. I am sure there are millions of informed people who feel exactly the same way.

Edited 2006-07-09 02:19

Reply Score: 1