Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 5th Mar 2007 23:08 UTC
Microsoft Microsoft Office program manager Brian Jones, whose work has centered around the Open XML document format, now says the so-called format war with OpenDocument is officially over. The winner, he says, is both. Jones made the statement in a blog post over the weekend following the release by Novell of an Open XML translator for OpenOffice. The plug-in enables the free, open source productivity suite to open documents created in the Microsoft format, as well as saving OpenDocument files into Open XML.
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RE[6]: because they lost...
by nberardi on Wed 7th Mar 2007 17:05 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: because they lost..."
nberardi
Member since:
2005-07-10

g2devi - You have it backwards. What segedunum is suggesting is good engineering (getting rid of special cases) and the MS approach is defeatism (adding hacks).

And yet Microsoft Office is the only product that still supports legacy documents back 16+ years.

Documents don't magically get upgraded when a new format/specification comes out. So there is always going to have to be support for legacy documents. Because there are still people cranking out documents from Windows 98, I think the last study I saw had Windows 98 still at 5% market share.

And it is great if you can mimic the functionality of an old document in the new ODF, but there are things that cannot be mimiced. So to support this you have to create an overly gernerilized specification or add special cases. Both have their draw backs, but there is less of a chance a special case is going to contain a bug. But special cases to provide bloat.

Either way OOo isn't currently ready to convert some of the more complex legacy documents to be 100% the same as they were in their original format. And I am not just talking about Microsoft Office documents.

IBM could easily release the Lotus 123, WordPerfect, and other document format specifications, but I have heard no word of them doing that for OOo. So if a big supporter of ODF doesn't do this to make it easier for OOo to convert the legacy documents to ODF, what are the chances a proponent of ODF is going to do that.

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