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Gary Edwards

Europe: Microsoft's behavior has changed, interop docs already complete | Tech Policy &... - 0 views

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    "In light of changes in Microsoft's behaviour, the increased opportunity for third parties to exercise their rights directly before national courts and experience gained since the adoption of the 2004 Decision," this morning's statement reads, "the Commission no longer requires a full time monitoring trustee to assess Microsoft's compliance. In future, the Commission intends to rely on the ad hoc assistance of technical consultants.


    "Microsoft has an ongoing obligation to supply complete and accurate interoperability information as specified in the Commission's 2004 Microsoft Decision," the EC goes on. "However, given that the original set of interoperability information has already been documented by Microsoft, increased opportunities through private enforcement provisions in Microsoft's license agreements for third parties to exercise their rights directly before national courts, and experience gained since the adoption of the 2004 Decision, the nature of the technical assistance that the Commission requires is now of a more ad hoc character."
Gary Edwards

Document Interoperability Initiative: Appendix H - 0 views

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    Microsoft recently released their blueprint for implementing ISO 26300 (ODF 1.0 - dated May 1, 2005), and referenced this Web site. Appendix H is interesting in that it lists 13 of the 28 contributors sponsored by The OpenDocument Foundation. This contributor list contradicts the determined liars (er, editors) at Wikipedia who insist that The OpenDocument Foundation was two guys without a garage. The OpenDocument Foundation was founded in 2005 (shortly after OASIS approval of ODF 1.0) for the express purpose of balancing out the rapidly growing participation in the ODF technical committee of corporate contributors. IBM, Oracle, Novel, Intel and Adobe led a corporate wave joining the ODF TC following the May 2005 OASIS approval of ODF 1.0 and subsequent submission to ISO. The Foundation was set up to fund the participation of expert individuals representing both open source communities and groups interested in an Open Web future.
Gary Edwards

Open Stack: ISO Does The Unthinkable. How ISO approval of MSOffice-OOXML will break th... - 0 views

  • In August of 2007 we dropped ODF as the da Vinci target conversion format, and moved to the W3C's Compound Document Format (CDF) with an ePUB wrapper.

    The reason for this move is that we could not establish a reasonable degree of interoperability with OpenOffice ODF unless Sun supported the five generic eXtensions to ODF needed to hit the high fidelity conversion the da Vinci process is capable of.

    Since da Vinci is a clone of the MSOffice OOXML compatibility Kit, we use the same internal conversion process where imbr (in-memory-binary-representation) is converted to another format: imbr <> OOXML or, imbr <> RTF.

    While it's entirely compliant to eXtend ODF, without Sun's changes to OpenOffice ODF the application-platform-vendor independent interoperability end users expect would be meaningless.

    The problem as we see it is this; it is impossible to do a high fidelity conversion between two application specific XML formats.

    It is however quite possible to do a conversion between an application specific format and a generic (application-platform-vendor independent) format.
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    A summary of my views on ISO approval of MSOffice-OOXML and the impact it will have on the futrue of the open web.
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    In response to a recent question posted to a rather old OpenStack blog, i posted this summary of my views on ISO approval of MSOffice-OOXML and the impact it will have on the futrue of the open web.
Gary Edwards

OOXML and ODF: The next step | [odf-discuss] Marbux Responds! - 0 views

  • The issue we were discussing -- and what I believe the ODEF conference was very much concerned with -- was whether ODF plus vendor-specific extensions will be classified as conformant ODF. The market requirement is for "Exchange Formats" and document-level interoperability. I could repose my question as whether ODF v. 1.2 will "clearly and unambiguously specify interoperability requirements essential to achieve the interoperability," as required by JTC 1 Directives. As you noted in an earlier post in this thread, you can't do interoperability if you use vendor extensions. > I see a standard as providing a shared vocabulary for buyers and sellers > to express their requirements. You are in error. This is a matter controlled by law rather than by personal opinion. Standards are all about the substitutability of goods, weights, and measures. A standard specifies all characteristics of a product, weight, or measure in mandatory terms so there is uniformity. Standards are the antithesis of product differentiation. Their very purpose is to eliminate product differentiation.
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    Excellent legal argument by the legendary marbux concerning OOXML and ODF itneroperability. Covers ISO Interop Requirements and the demands of International Trade Agreements. Key to this thread is ODF v 1.2 and what must be done to bring ODF into legal compliance with International demands.
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    Outstanding analysis and research by the legendary marbux
Gary Edwards

Once More unto the Breach: Microsoft Discusses Open Standards (versus Open Source Softw... - 0 views

  • So here are some "Key Messages" from Microsoft's standards team circa 2003 (doing battle with the Australian parliament no doubt) [Emphasis added]:

    • An open standard is a publicly available specification which details certain technical functionality that may be implemented in different products and services.  It is adopted in an open, consensus-based process and must satisfy other criteria for transparency, ease of access, and broad implementation as described below.
    • Open standards exist to facilitate interoperability and data exchange across various products and services in a marketplace of multiple, competing implementations, while ensuring that certain minimum requirements are met.
    • Other types of standards (e.g., “proprietary standards”) and market-based mechanisms exist and are currently used to facilitate interoperability.  However, open standards ensure the highest level of interoperability across the widest range of competing products and services.
Gary Edwards

Wizard of ODF: Proposal to amend TC charter, re interoperability with non-conformant ap - 0 views

  • 7. it must provide all feasible functionality required to suppport full fidelity conversions from and to existing office document binary file formats.
Gary Edwards

EC on Microsoft Interoperability Declaration: Is It April Fools' Day Already? | John Pa... - 0 views

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    Thomas Vinge, the counsel for the ECIS, comments on Microsoft's most recent restatement of their enduring commitment to interoperability and transparency.
Gary Edwards

Is this valid? - ODF List Archives - 0 views

  • just played a little with other ODF applications. Looks like Lotus Symphony can handle input fields with paragraphs breaks in it. The XML it produces is:
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    Archives of all OASIS ODF TC disussions.  Does not include Metadata, Formula or Accessibility lists
Gary Edwards

Government Open Source Conference to Feature Open Document Debate - Government Technolo... - 0 views

  • The Executive Panel on Open Document Formats, moderated by Andy Stein, director of information technology at the city of Newport News, Va., will focus on how the user community can get involved in this issue, have influence over its outcome and knowledge for implementations. Panelists are expected to address the practical differences between competing standards OOXML, ODF and CDF to determine which one(s) truly provide a single file format that is open, universally interoperable and application- and platform-independent. About half of the session will be set aside for audience questions, providing an opportunity for GOSCON attendees to gain direct access to the debate.
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    The press coverage on GOSCON is outstanding.  Kudos to Debra Bryant and Andy Stein for stoking the fire here. 
Gary Edwards

Universal Interoperability Framework for OpenDocument - 0 views

  • SUMMARY: The OpenDocument Foundation proposes that the OASIS Office TC begin now to create an interoperability framework for inclusion in OpenDocument v. 1.2. This document, one of a series of planned proposals, proposes first steps towards a comprehensive interoperability framework and OpenDocument conformance requirements.  This proposal is designed to bring ODF v. 1.2 into compliance with current ISO Interoperability Requirements.
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    The OpenDocument Foundation "Universal Interoperability Framework" Proposal has not been submitted to the OASIS ODF TC as of this bookmarking.  But this version is complete except for a closing summation.
Gary Edwards

Groklaw - Microsoft, antitrust and innovation, by Georg Greve - 0 views

  • Interoperability:

    The second abusive practice the Commission found Microsoft guilty of is the deliberate obstruction of interoperability, generally achieved through arbitrary and willful modification of Open Standards. This makes it impossible for competitors to write interoperable software. This is to the detriment of customers, who find themselves locked into the products of one vendor, the antithesis of competition.

  • It might look much worse in the light of public statements that Microsoft will not even commit to standards that it has proposed itself, such as the recent Microsoft OfficeOpenXML (OOXML) format it wants approved by ISO.

    The less people talk about the interoperability side of the case, the better for Microsoft. Otherwise people might connect MS-OOXML to the fact that Microsoft initiated the standardisation effort in the workgroup server area to open the market and later started obstruction of interoperability on its own standard to drive the innovator out of the market.

    • Gary Edwards
       
      Great point. I think tha tanytime a big vendor embraces an open standard they should committ to full public documentation and explanation of any eXtensions to their implementaiton of that standard. Interoperability matters!
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    Excellent explanation of Microsoft's problems in Europe.  One can only hope that the successor to the Bush Administration is paying attention. 
Gary Edwards

Microsoft Watch - Corporate - Microsoft's Stunning Court Defeat - 0 views

  • "The Court considers that the Commission was correct to conclude that the work group server operating systems of Microsoft's competitors must be able to interoperate with Windows domain architecture on an equal footing with Windows operating systems if they are to be capable of being marketed viably. The absence of such interoperability has the effect of reinforcing Microsoft's competitive position on the market and creates a risk that competition will be eliminated."
  • Here, U.S. oversight of Microsoft will continue until at least November 2009, largely because of server protocol licensing. The so-called "California group" of states—those that didn't settle the U.S. antitrust case—and other parties will likely ask the court here to align the two disclosure programs, extending the ruling's impact well beyond Europe.
    • Gary Edwards
       
      I wonder if this is correct? My understanding is that the California Group will be brushed aside by the Feds?
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    Microsoft Watch Joe Wilcox is on the job.  This particular hgihlighted quote speaks volumes.  The USA anti trust settlement famously allowed Microsoft to commercialize interoperability through expensive licenses -  $8 Million per year for just the basic package.

    It looks like the EU would force those interoperability API's out into the open.  I wonder how this position will impact the November 12 th hearing on lifting the USA anti trust oversight?  We have the EU saying the monopolist is illegally maintaining their monopoly through various interop barricades.  And, the USA about to declare that the interop barricades no longer exists, therefore, the monopolist should be free to wreck havoc. 

    The stage looks set for a vey dramatic final act.

Gary Edwards

OOXML in Norway: The haywire process | Geir Isene : Straight talk on IT - 0 views

  • I had read the essay by Jon Bosak (SUN Microsystems) on why SUN voted as it did in the US. He lays out a very different strategy. His view is that the battle is lost to completely reject OOXML as an ISO standard. ISO can only reject it with comments, and that is equivalent to giving Microsoft a todo-list on how to fix the draft so as to get it approved. Microsoft has sufficient manpower to easily tackle that.

    Most of us had missed what Mr. Bosak saw: OOXML promises interoperability with earlier closed binary formats (the Word Doc, older Excel file formats etc.). But it doesn’t deliver. How on earth could someone be able to convert old binary files to the new format without having the specification of the old formats and a mapping to OOXML. If you are to translate some text from Chinese to English, it doesn’t much help to only know English.

    • Gary Edwards
       
      A "Yes with comments" is a yes for the ISO approval of MS-OOMXL. If ISO approves MS-OOXML, it won't matter what Bosak's "comments" strategy is. Microsoft and the Vista Stack will be off to the races. The full disclosure of the MS binary document secret blueprint won't matter much at that point.
  • “Ah c’mon Bosak, you are chickening out, we must stop this dead in the track”
    • Gary Edwards
       
      There you go Geir!

      Sun and Bosak have held the door open for MS-OOXML since 2002, when Sun blocked an effort to write the ODF Charter to include as a priority, "compatibility with existing file formats". This of course would include the billions of legacy MS binary documents.



      The thing is that those who work in the conversion-translation field will tell you that it is currently impossible to pipe converted legacy binary documents and OOXMl docs for that matter into ODF. Just as Microsoft claims, ODF in it's current state is insufficient and unable to handle the rich feature set of the MSOffice developers platform.



      The problem could of course be easily fixed by the inclusion in ODF of five structural generics. In the past year, there have been no less than five iX "interoperability enhancement" proposals submitted to the OASIS ODF TC for discussion and consideration. As uber universal interop expert Florian Reuter points out in his blog, these iX proposals did not fare so well.



      What Florian doesn't point out is that it was Sun who opposed any and all efforts to improve compatibility with existing Microsoft binary and OOXML documents. Just as they have done for nearly five years now.



      Sort of puts the Sun-Bosak support for ISO approval of MS-OOXML in a different light.

      ~ge~
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    see the sticky notes on this one
Gary Edwards

Microsoft bashed in OOXML shens (and comparing loos) - Computerworld Blogs - 0 views

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    Collection of clips from the blogosphere concerning the pending Sep 2nd ISO vote on MS OOXML
Gary Edwards

Open Sources | InfoWorld | While you were sleeping... (The Sharepoint Trojan Horse) | A... - 0 views

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    Matt Asay's commentary pointing out that the Microsoft monopoly is moving from the desktop to the SharePoint Server. Matt's cites a recent Wall Street Journal article as his reference. And both have it right except that i would have called this the Exchange/SharePoint Hub juggernaut.

    The idea is to migrate existing MSOffice bound business processes to the E/S Hub. From there, end user documents, collaboration and workflow interfaces are wired into Microsoft backends and web fronts (MS SQL Server, MS IIS, MS Active Directory, MS Dynamics, MS Communications Server, etc.)
Gary Edwards

Slamming the door shut on MS OOXML - 0 views

  • So your goal is a networked world where metadata is routinely trashed by apps developed by those who are too dumb or otherwise disabled to preserve metadata and only the big boys get to do interoperability, right? So if I send you a document for your editing, I can't count on getting it back with xml:id attributes intact.

    No thanks, Patrick. That sounds way too much like how things have worked ever since office productivity software first came on the market. In your world, interoperability belongs only to those who can map features 1:1 with the most featureful apps. And that is precisely why OpenDocument never should have been approved as a standard. Your kind of interoperability makes ODF a de facto Sun Microsystems standard wearing the clothing of a de jure standard. Why not just standardize the whole world on Microsoft apps and be done with it? Are two monopolies maintained by an interoperability barrier between them better than one?

    Fortunately, we don't have to debate the issue because the Directives resolve the issue. You lose under the rules of the game.
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    Marbux on metadata and the language of universal interoperability:

    Few people are aware of the raging debate that has pushed ODF to the edge. The OASIS ODF TC is split between those who support Universal Interoperability, and those who insist on continuing with limited ODF interoperability.



    ODF (OpenDocument), formally known as Open Office XML, began it's standards life in the fall of 2002 when Sun submitted the OpenOffice file format to OASIS for consideration as a office suite XML fiel format standard. The work on ODF did not start off as a clean slate in that there were near 600 pages of application specific specification from day one of the standards work. The forces of universal interop have sought for years to separate ODF from the application specific features and implementation model of OpenOffice that began with those early specification volumes, and continues through the undue influence Sun continues to have over the ODF specification work.

    Many mistakenly believed that submission of ODF to ISO and subsequent approval as an international standard would provide an effective separation, putting ODF on the track of a truly universal file format.



    Marbux is one of those Universal Interop soldiers who has dug in his heels, cried to the heavens that enough is enough, and demanded the necessary changes to ODF interoperability language.



    This post he recently submitted to the OASIS ODF Metadata SC is a devastating rebuttal to the arguments of those who support the status quo of limited interoperability.



    In prior posts, marbux argues that ISO directives demand without compromise universal interoperability. This demand is also shared by the World Trade Organization directives regarding international trade laws and agreements. Here he brings those arguments together with the technical issues for achieving universal interop.



    It's a devastating argument.



Gary Edwards

Re: [office-metadata] Suggested Changes on the Metadata proposal - 0 views

    • Gary Edwards
       
      Preserving metadata! Preserving application specific information. Preserving "unknown" information inside of a document
  • Unless we add conformance requirements for the preservation of metadata and processing instructions, the less featureful apps will never  be able to round-trip documents with the more featureful apps. Our language should require that. Personally, I believe that the software-as-an-end-point client-side office suites are dinosaurs at the end of their era. They are being finished off by a thousand cuts as users spend less and less time using them and more and more time using other apps, such as web apps. ODF either develops methods for interoperability among all apps or it will die along with the office suites. E.g., Microsoft knows this and is busily migrating its Office development budget across the Sharepoint/Exchange server hubs to the network. Meanwhile, this TC fiddles with preserving the 1995 software-as-an-endpoint vision.
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    Marbux is clearly at the top of his game here as he hammers the interoperability issue.
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