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11.25.07

NOOOXML: GNOME Foundation in Kahoots? (Updated)

Posted in GNOME, Novell, Open XML at 8:27 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Interesting new bits in the FFII-affiliated Web site:

The Gnome foundation actively participated in the ECMA fast-tracking of Open XML as a sock puppet for Novell. Now the Foundation clarified its position that came under recent criticism.

I mentioned this post here in this Web site just several hours ago. Jeff Waugh saw this and he then created an account in NOOOXML (yes, spot the irony Correction: Jeff actually opposes OOXML as an ISO standard):

jdub

Wikidot.com user since: 25 Nov 2007, 22:46 BST (2 hours ago)

He responded to the allegation (the one cited above) just moments ago.

Prompt says 'No'

Update: Mind the following.

The work to standardise OpenXML has been carried out by Ecma International with representatives from Apple, Barclays Capital, BP, The British Library, Essilor, Gnome Foundation, Intel, Microsoft, NextPage, Novell, Statoil, Toshiba, and the United States Library of Congress.

Mind the presence of Novell and the Gnome Foundation in this statement. If the Foundation only wishes to improve OOXML ensure that OOXML is effectively documented such that FLOSS products can implement it [corrected, see below] (because Moox doesn’t just go “poof”, as Jody Goldberg puts it), then the text above should be corrected to exclude the Gnome Foundation. As it stands, the Gnome Foundation is said to be among those who contribute comments and contribute to “The work to standardise OpenXML”. This is unacceptable.

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60 Comments

  1. Jeff Waugh said,

    November 25, 2007 at 9:20 pm

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    “Spot the irony”? Is this your excellent research and reporting suggesting that I’m *for* OOXML?

  2. Jeff Waugh said,

    November 25, 2007 at 9:23 pm

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    Another correction, which has been mentioned before, but is again misreported on this site: Our participation in ECMA TC45-M does not aim to “improve” OOXML as you’ve suggested above, but to ensure that it is effectively documented such that FLOSS products can implement it.

  3. Roy Schestowitz said,

    November 25, 2007 at 9:40 pm

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    “Spot the irony”? Is this your excellent research and reporting suggesting that I’m *for* OOXML?

    No, but the following statement should possibly state that you/the Foundation say “No” to OOXML. I apologise if I misrepresent you here and if your personal position does not align with the position of the Foundation as a whole.

  4. Roy Schestowitz said,

    November 25, 2007 at 9:43 pm

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    I’ve just corrected the text as you suggested.

  5. Jeff Waugh said,

    November 25, 2007 at 9:51 pm

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    What is the irony? Explain to me the irony of me, Jeff Waugh, having an account on the NOOOXML site. What is the point of making that comment? You’re just sledging me personally without any evidence to back it up.

    You’re also purposefully misinterpreting the Foundation’s statement. Nice!

    This is the problem you face with this site, Roy. You’re just reeling off criticism, slander, propaganda and insinuations and rationalising it all as “a blog” when you’re faced with accountability.

    You wouldn’t know my personal views on any of this because despite my encouragement, you haven’t done the absolute basics of *ASKING*. So sledge away, but make absolutely sure your readers know that you don’t do any credible research, or even speak to the stakeholders in the issue.

    My patience is wearing incredibly thin, but my door is still open.

  6. Roy Schestowitz said,

    November 25, 2007 at 9:53 pm

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    A reader who wishes to remain anonymous adds the following:

    “ECMA is a private membership organization ONLY to help improve and standardization. Since one of the arguments about OOXML not being an ISO is that it is not Open, you asking for documents gives Microsoft an example of transparency, which helps them get ISO. It also shows acceptance of the patent problems associated with OOXML. It shows that it’s not an issue. Another arguments against ISO for OOXML is it is hard to implement. Helping making it easier to implement and implementing/adoption is helping them get ISO and these are things GNOME is doing.”

    If you wish to rebut, don’t take it against me.

  7. Jeff Waugh said,

    November 25, 2007 at 10:07 pm

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    It could be suggested that having more/better documentation is “making it easier to implement”. However, the amount of documentation has no relation to how crappy the format was in the first place. Microsoft were able to essentially dump their format on ECMA for standardisation, so the only way to get anything out of that process is to demand documentation such that FLOSS developers can create software to interoperate with it. That’s what we’re doing.

    Additionally, Jody’s contribution had a measurable impact on the *amount* of documentation, which has helped those working against OOXML on technical grounds [1] claim that OOXML is too complicated, and certainly too large to go through the fast-track process. Read it again: Our participation has *helped*.

    [1] Not the rowdy political crowd who are damaging our ability to fight OOXML under the terms defined by ISO.

  8. Roy Schestowitz said,

    November 25, 2007 at 10:28 pm

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    Comment from the same person again (via E-mail):

    “No one goes to ECMA to demand documents, it’s there for standardization. You have lived without .docx your whole life. Surely you could have waited for the ISO process to end. Even with the best intentions at heart surely you renew the political ramifications that any involvement in this process and implementing OOXML from the FOSS community is a blessing for Microsoft. And don’t tell us, all your users need it. The way to get the documentation you need is to go to Microsoft technical department. Not in a standardization process with so much at stake and giving credibility to the process by participating.”

  9. Roy Schestowitz said,

    November 25, 2007 at 10:34 pm

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    [1] claim that OOXML is too complicated, and certainly too large to go through the fast-track process. Read it again: Our participation has *helped*.

    Also from the same unnamed source:

    “At ECMA TC45, there is no claiming to be done, the purpose of it and the purpose of all the participating members is to get ISO approval. All those participating with the exception of GNOME, voted YES already for ECMA approval last year.”

  10. Jeff Waugh said,

    November 25, 2007 at 10:36 pm

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    Actually, ECMA is an extremely good place to demand documentation, because it requires Microsoft to be answerable to a third party and show a shred of reasonableness. :-)

    You could not do that by “going to the Microsoft technical department”. Seriously, what cloud are you on?

    We’ve been fighting to get information about proprietary Microsoft formats and protocols for years, and you reckon we can “go to the Microsoft technical department”?! Crazy talk!

    The only excuse for making such a silly and obviously unrealistic suggestion is your anonymity. :-)

  11. Jeff Waugh said,

    November 25, 2007 at 10:38 pm

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    At ECMA TC45, there is no claiming to be done.

    I was pretty obviously talking about the ISO process there.

    (Why am I arguing with an anonymous coward?)

  12. Roy Schestowitz said,

    November 25, 2007 at 10:58 pm

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    I keep receiving E-mails from someone who knows this better than me (or both of us). The latest says:

    “going to the Microsoft technical department”. Seriously, what cloud are you on?

    “Well, then I guess it’s not Open and is patent incumbent, so why would you want to support it at the expense of ODF? Why use your resources to keep chasing a moving format? Why not work with the community and get Microsoft to implement ODF instead of creating a perception that you are helping them, which you will. And you did not answer my question but went personal in a nice way. -:) Surely you knew the political ramifications that any involvement in this process and implementing OOXML from the FOSS community is a blessing for Microsoft? The GNOME statement is neutral, it implies support/acceptance of OOXML as a standard.

    Mozilla, SQL, KDE, and every major FOSS group including major corporations, Google, Redhat, IBM, Oracle, Sun only support ODF and are not participating in this process, so why would GNOME?”

  13. rlilly@yahoo.com said,

    November 25, 2007 at 11:03 pm

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    Hi Jeff

    >>”going to the Microsoft technical department”. Seriously, what cloud are you on?

    Well then I guess its not Open and is patent incumbent, so why would you want to support it at the expense of ODF. Why use your resources to keep chasing a moving format? Why not work with the community and get MS to implememt ODF instead of creating a perception that you are helping them which will.

    That question you did not anwer but went personal in a nice way -:) Surely you new the political ramifications that any involvement in this process and implementing OOXML from the FOSS community is a blessing for Microsoft? The GNOME statement is nuetral, it implies support/acceptance of OOXML as a standard.

    Mozilla, SQL, KDE, and every major FOSS group including major corporations, Google, Redhat, IBM, Oracle, Sun only support ODF and are not participating in this process, so why would GNOME?

  14. Jeff Waugh said,

    November 25, 2007 at 11:08 pm

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    why would you want to support it at the expense of ODF

    We’re not! Bad assumption!

    Mozilla, SQL, KDE, and every major FOSS group including major corporations, Google, Redhat, IBM, Oracle, Sun only support ODF and are not participating in this process, so why would GNOME?

    To hold Microsoft’s feet to the fire and get as much documentation out of them as possible.

    It’s bad enough that I waste my time on this site — I’m not going to bother answering questions from anonymous posters anymore. Show some spine.

  15. Roy Schestowitz said,

    November 25, 2007 at 11:11 pm

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    Jeff,

    What does the messenger have to do with the validity of the message? Unless the messenger is being deceptive, rude or offensive, there’s no reason to escape the message. In fact, any questions that you answer here make GNOME stronger because it squashes doubts.

  16. Jeff Waugh said,

    November 25, 2007 at 11:20 pm

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    I think it’s a waste of my time to answer questions of someone who is not willing to engage in the conversation by name. I am here, 100% open and honest, taking 100% responsibility for what I say by contributing in name. I think it is entirely reasonable to suggest that other participants make the same commitment. Even so, I have answered some of the questions — up to this point. It is simply a matter of politeness and respect.

    (Squashing doubts? There’s no squashing your doubts, Roy! I’m sure you’ll continue to sneak some weasely insinuations in, no matter what I say. You still haven’t answered why it was necessary to make such a swinish comment in this post.)

  17. rlilly@yahoo.com said,

    November 25, 2007 at 11:28 pm

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    > why would you want to support it at the expense of ODF

    Hey I just opened Abiword, and dont see import/export for ODF but see .doc coming up.. And I saw the import filter for OOXML for Abiworld on Brian Jones’s site as “Support for OOXML”

    Jeff says: “Microsoft’s feet to the fire and get as much documentation out of them as possible.”

    How you can not see, or will not admit that the perceptions from all GNOME activities can aid OOXML becoming an ISO is beyond me.

    ECMA TC45 is Microsoft play ground, both Chairman and Co-Chairman are Microsoft emplyees. No one is there to hold thier feet to the fire. “The work to standardise OpenXML has been carried out by Ecma …..Gnome……Novell…..Microsoft….” and by GNOME’s activities of getting documents, and others…… you are helping that process.

    So just because of your users, none of which need .docx right now, you go against the rest of the community and corporations supporting ODF and potentially ruining thier cause… GNOME ROCKS BABY

    Ciao

  18. Roy Schestowitz said,

    November 25, 2007 at 11:34 pm

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    I thought I answered it in comment number 3. That site is design to accumulate votes against OOXML. From what I can gather based on the Foundation’s statement, there’s still no clear sign that the Foundation opposes OOXML. What I’m also not sure about is your own position.

    You have encouraged me to ask questions. I have a question and a one-word answer would do [1]. Do you oppose OOXML as an ISO standard?

    __
    [1] Unlike the conversation debate mastered by politicians where they can say “yes” and “no” in the same mixed message, which pleases both crowds.

  19. Jeff Waugh said,

    November 25, 2007 at 11:34 pm

    Gravatar

    Hey I just opened Abiword, and dont see import/export for ODF but see .doc coming up.. And I saw the import filter for OOXML for Abiworld on Brian Jones’s site as “Support for OOXML”

    That’s up to the AbiWord developers. They’re not actually affiliated with GNOME at all. I wish they’d sort out rocking ODF support too, then I wouldn’t have to use OpenOffice.org. :-)

    How you can not see, or will not admit that the perceptions from all GNOME activities can aid OOXML becoming an ISO is beyond me.

    They clearly have: among a group of people who are more interested in hate than logic. Yes, we did entertain the risk that participating in ECMA may be used by Microsoft, but so far they haven’t bitten, and they’re very wary of it. We’re not their friends, and they know it.

    I totally understand that some elements of the community won’t agree with what we’ve done, but I reject the demonisation of GNOME. We’re doing what we’re doing for good reasons. I’d love to agree to disagree, but you’re painting us either as idiots or evil. That’s really sad.

  20. Roy Schestowitz said,

    November 25, 2007 at 11:41 pm

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    From http://www.robweir.com/blog/2007/08/dog-that-didnt-bark.html

    “A curious blog post from Brian Jones, looking at spreadsheet interoperability between Gnumeric and Apple’s new Numbers spreadsheet, using OOXML. Take a read there and come back and we can compare notes.’

    It sounds to me like Jody Goldberg and others are playing right into Microsoft’s hands.

    Also see:

    http://www.robweir.com/blog/2007/03/compatibility-according-to-humpty.html
    http://www.robweir.com/blog/2006/11/genesis-115-9.html

  21. Jeff Waugh said,

    November 25, 2007 at 11:42 pm

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    Hooray, an actual question!

    Of course I do.

    The fact that there’s any question about that at all demonstrates that you don’t do research and you don’t have any idea about what you’re writing.

    And AGAIN, you’re doing this in comments on your site, instead of contacting me like any reasonable researcher would do. I’ve said it over and over again, but you are stubbornly refusing to do the right thing by your site, by your readers, and by the community you purport to assist.

    Shame.

  22. Roy Schestowitz said,

    November 25, 2007 at 11:45 pm

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    Thanks, I’ve corrected the text. I wish I received same answer from GNOME, but I’m aware of the fact that it involves a larger crown, which makes an answer harder to give.

  23. Jeff Waugh said,

    November 25, 2007 at 11:47 pm

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    It sounds to me like Jody Goldberg and others are playing right into Microsoft’s hands.

    Oh my god. Seriously:

    I’ve *TOLD* you that Jody was doing initial support for OOXML (which you reported as “supported OOXML”, completely misunderstanding the point).

    I’ve *TOLD* you that Microsoft have mentioned it.

    I’ve *TOLD* you that it was ripped to shreds due to the immaturity of the implementation, which demonstrates how hard it is to implement OOXML.

    This is not new information.

  24. Jeff Waugh said,

    November 25, 2007 at 11:48 pm

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    Your “spot the irony” comment was inappropriate regardless of your lack of basic research into my personal opinions. GNOME very clearly does not support OOXML — read the statement again, and stop stubbornly seeking conspiracies.

  25. Roy Schestowitz said,

    November 25, 2007 at 11:53 pm

    Gravatar

    I’ve *TOLD* you that Jody was doing initial support for OOXML

    And that’s enough to make Microsoft happy, as demonstrated by Brian Jones.

    I’ve *TOLD* you that Microsoft have mentioned it.

    That’s even worse (that Microsoft mentioned it). Yes, you have already told me this, so I never pretended that it was news.

    I’ve *TOLD* you that it was ripped to shreds due to the immaturity of the implementation, which demonstrates how hard it is to implement OOXML.

    Why not show them how easy it is to implement ODF instead of beginning to show that OOXML is ‘work in progress’? I didn’t realise this until rlilly at yahoo.com said it, but Abiword has not even bothered with the ISO standard yet. Instead, It has put effort going into something which had Microsoft “behave in the abusive manner of an unreformed, convicted monopolist with no passion for true industry collaboration in the interests of users.” (source: GNOME Foundation)

  26. Roy Schestowitz said,

    November 25, 2007 at 11:55 pm

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    GNOME very clearly does not support OOXML

    Does it actively oppose OOXML? These are two separate things (apathy, participation, etc.).

  27. Jeff Waugh said,

    November 25, 2007 at 11:57 pm

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    Why are you asking me? Why are you asking in the comments section of your nasty website? This is the stupidest place to attempt any kind of reasonable discussion.

    The GNOME Foundation doesn’t tell developers what to do. They make their choices and work on what they want to do. Why are you blaming the entire GNOME community for the choices that some developers make in their volunteer, free time? Why are you turning the decisions of individual developers into political fodder?

    You’re just being nasty and disrespectful. Simple as that.

  28. Jeff Waugh said,

    November 26, 2007 at 12:00 am

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    Does it actively oppose OOXML?

    Would you like to define GNOME policy? Do you think it’s actually relevant? In what way would you like us to oppose OOXML? Would you like GNOME developers to never implement it? Would you like us to protest its standardisation on political grounds? Actively in what sense? Who would we be speaking for if the GNOME Foundation made this statement? Come on…

  29. rlilly@yahoo.com said,

    November 26, 2007 at 12:07 am

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    http://odftoolkit.openoffice.org/ might help get it implemented faster.

    >I’d love to agree to disagree, but you’re painting us either as idiots or evil. >That’s really sad.

    Neither Jeff, more naively pragmatic which is dangerous in this case. Not representing the hearts and minds of the community and potentially ruining one of the most significant events for FOSS, innovation, freedom of expression is concerning. But you very smart, so one should think there is other reasons for participating… Lets face it, the Novell/MS deal made a lot of us paranoid and the amount of major Novell developers working on GNOME transfers that paranoia, and the Novell influence is obvious. Sure the sirens are going off. Especially if ones sees and hears the same lingo from Novell as they do from highly visable GNOME members.

    Robert Lilly SR.

  30. Roy Schestowitz said,

    November 26, 2007 at 12:08 am

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    To give you just what example, Google has posted formal documents that oppose OOXML. In general, Google will willingly admit that it’s against OOXML. When the ISO’s decision was announced in September Google also added this:

    http://www.techworld.com/applications/news/index.cfm?newsid=10089

    If Google (proprietary) can, why can’t GNOME (free desktop)?

  31. Jeff Waugh said,

    November 26, 2007 at 12:12 am

    Gravatar

    Lets face it, the Novell/MS deal made a lot of us paranoid and the amount of major Novell developers working on GNOME transfers that paranoia, and the Novell influence is obvious.

    Only if you’re constructing fantasy conspiracy theories. It’s just not the case. I mean, the very first of the problems with that statement is “the amount of major Novell developers working on GNOME” — there are very few these days. Most of my friends working on GNOME from Novell are no longer there.

    This is why I object to the conspiracy theories from ill-informed people — there is no basis in truth for many of them at all. It’s just nasty muck-raking.

  32. Roy Schestowitz said,

    November 26, 2007 at 12:13 am

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    Why are you turning the decisions of individual developers into political fodder?

    That may be true when it comes to Gnumeric code. I still think that the GNOME Foundation ought to have stepped down from that whole ECMA ritual that ushers the arrival of {Lockin as a Standard}®

  33. Jeff Waugh said,

    November 26, 2007 at 12:13 am

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    Oh for Pete’s sake Roy, stop being so obnoxious. Read the bloody statement. The GNOME Foundation doesn’t support ISO standardisation of OOXML. Plain as day. Stop being such a muck-raker.

  34. Roy Schestowitz said,

    November 26, 2007 at 12:16 am

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    We never received an explanation for this:

    At the bottom of the page of the press resource for GNOME, it should be totally inappropriate for a non-profit free software foundation to be promoting a commercial product. And yet, Kevan Barney from Novell is listed as “Contact for questions about the Novell Linux Desktop”. Is GNOME promoting Novell’s products? Is it an endorsement? A dependency?

    http://www.gnome.org/press/

    From this post

  35. Roy Schestowitz said,

    November 26, 2007 at 12:19 am

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    The GNOME Foundation doesn’t support ISO standardisation of OOXML. Plain as day.

    But does it oppose OOXML? (I’ve asked you this before and you escaped a direct answer)

    I’ve just read the press release for the 4th time. The Foundation implicitly says that it supports ODF, but not once does it say that it opposes OOXML.

  36. Jeff Waugh said,

    November 26, 2007 at 12:20 am

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    Ah, more muck-raking! An easily explained non-controversial thing on the GNOME website must indicate EVIL is involved. Yes Roy, this is productive coverage of the big issues!

    Roy, if you have questions to ask, contact me or the Board and I will very happily answer them. It is not appropriate to ask or answer your questions here in the comments on your web site. You are abusing my time and patience (and you’re abusing me in the process, but I’ll let that one slide again).

    Are you actually going to do it this time?

  37. rlilly@yahoo.com said,

    November 26, 2007 at 12:22 am

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    Nothing I said about GNOME participation in ECMA or activities related to OOXMl is nasty muck raking. The overall concensus from these activities is support for OOXML.. And unfortuntely GNOMES statement did not help quell that concensus.

    Those paranoid perceptions are a reality, so one should work on ways to start fixing it. A really good way is to move away from technology Novell/MS based as much as possible like Mono, announce a total disaproval of OOXML as a standard. Remove Miguel as a member.. until he is removed, he will always be associated with GNOME, Perhaps its time to make it official.

  38. Roy Schestowitz said,

    November 26, 2007 at 12:25 am

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    Jeff,

    There’s nothing you need to tell me which should remain secret. I have always been a huge fan of transparency because it prevents mysteries, loss of information, miscommunication, and mistrust.

  39. Jeff Waugh said,

    November 26, 2007 at 12:25 am

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    But does it oppose OOXML?

    I know I’m avoiding a direct answer here, but I think you should consider your question a little further, to understand how little sense it makes (also, it’s mildly entertaining to watch you grasp for conspiracy theories, even though I find your attitude so nasty)…

    How is this relevant? Does the GNOME Foundation oppose the SMB protocol and the binary DOC format? What does your question mean? And after all of that, what would it mean for the GNOME Foundation to “oppose OOXML”? Should we plan to bomb it?

    OOXML is already an ECMA standard. DOCX is already shipping in Microsoft products. The issue here is whether or not OOXML becomes an ISO standard. We’re not contributing to, sponsoring, supporting or endorsing that.

  40. Jeff Waugh said,

    November 26, 2007 at 12:27 am

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    There’s nothing you need to tell me which should remain secret. I have always been a huge fan of transparency because it prevents mysteries, loss of information, miscommunication, and mistrust.

    I didn’t suggest anything I had to tell you would be a secret. I just suggested that you should show the respect to contact me by mail to ask questions and do your research instead of attacking me in the comments section of your website. Grow up and show some spine. Stop weaselling out of doing the right thing.

  41. Jeff Waugh said,

    November 26, 2007 at 12:29 am

    Gravatar

    A really good way is to move away from technology Novell/MS based as much as possible like Mono, announce a total disaproval of OOXML as a standard. Remove Miguel as a member.. until he is removed, he will always be associated with GNOME, Perhaps its time to make it official.

    We’re not moving towards Mono, we’re not supporting OOXML as an ISO standard, and we’re not going to kick Miguel out of the Foundation. He may not be active in GNOME anymore, but we have more respect than that. Turn your irrational hatred off for a moment and have a think about it, see if you really believe that kicking out the founder would be a productive thing to do. Maybe you are that nasty.

  42. Roy Schestowitz said,

    November 26, 2007 at 12:30 am

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    OOXML is already an ECMA standard.

    ECMA is a coin-in-the-slot standards body. It’s bought. it’s a joke. Don’t let ISO be ruined as well. Microsoft did enough damage to it already. (will provide many references to back my accusations, if needed)

    DOCX is already shipping in Microsoft products. The issue here is whether or not OOXML becomes an ISO standard. We’re not contributing to, sponsoring, supporting or endorsing that.

    So just oppose. Oppose it while you can. OOXML fell down back in September, despite Microsoft briberies and endless corruption (yes, I dare say so because I know these things very intimately). OOXML was put to rest before and it can happen again, unless Microsoft uses its Money Machine® (yet again) to ‘persuade’ involved parties.

  43. Roy Schestowitz said,

    November 26, 2007 at 12:32 am

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    I didn’t suggest anything I had to tell you would be a secret. I just suggested that you should show the respect to contact me by mail to ask questions and do your research instead of attacking me in the comments section of your website. Grow up and show some spine. Stop weaselling out of doing the right thing.

    Asking questions? I tried. You said I was not asking the right question, i.e. the question you were prepared to answer.

  44. Jeff Waugh said,

    November 26, 2007 at 12:32 am

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    ECMA is a coin-in-the-slot standards body. It’s bought. it’s a joke.

    I disagree with your nasty attitude, but yes, ECMA is not particularly potent, and I’ve said as much on this site.

    Don’t let ISO be ruined as well.

    We’re not. Simple as that.

  45. Jeff Waugh said,

    November 26, 2007 at 12:35 am

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    Asking questions? I tried. You said I was not asking the right question, i.e. the question you were prepared to answer.

    The only time you’ve actually emailed me to ask a question was as a result of a long thread during which you obstinately refused to ask any questions. When you finally did, it was not related to the issue we were discussing.

    Again, you’re trying to rationalise your way out of just doing the right thing. After saying time and time again that my door is open to you, you’re just chicken. Sad.

  46. Roy Schestowitz said,

    November 26, 2007 at 12:41 am

    Gravatar

    I can usually search the Web to find answers to questions that I have. That’s what I do. I can even read your blog posts and pick up your insights with minimal disturbance and without too much ambiguity and chatting ‘ping-pong’.

  47. Jeff Waugh said,

    November 26, 2007 at 12:50 am

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    Again, you’re rationalising your way out of doing the right thing.

    Searching the web will not give you answers to some of the questions you are asking. I have opened my door to you and yet you obstinately refuse to ask me about anything. You posted a whole series of snide, nasty questions on this post, all of which are easily answerable. You simply have to ask the right person: I am a representative of the GNOME Foundation, and I have said over and over again that I am prepared to answer your questions about GNOME.

    Instead of spreading FUD and innuendo ABOUT PEOPLE AND PROJECTS IN THE FREE SOFTWARE COMMUNITY, you could be spreading the truth and uniting our community against credible threads.

    Stop trying to weasel your way out of it. You’d prefer to waste my time on this site with lies, insinuation and personal attacks than actually deliver credible, balanced, useful information to your readers.

    It is absolutely shameful. You purport to be helping FLOSS, and yet you are so actively doing damage to it. Shameful.

  48. rlilly@yahoo.com said,

    November 26, 2007 at 12:55 am

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    >Turn your irrational hatred off for a moment and have a think about it, see >if you really believe that kicking out the founder would be a productive >thing to do. Maybe you are that nasty.

    Jeff everytime you cannot answer a question or dont like a statement it becomes a personal attack. Sure Miguel is a good guy, he has done nothing to me. But his views are different from the community he is still a member off and other members in the community follow him completely, and those views are associated with GNOME, then is would seem like a logical step for him to totally part ways..God Bless him. History will always record him as a Founder and a pioneer..

    So go on and fight your battle against the whole community, and convince them that getting documentation, making OOXML easier to implement, giving MS examples of support, participating in ECMA is wise thing to do becasue GNOME users need it now…Well when MS walks into a National Board meeting after the BRM for the sales pitch of thier lives, you know they will be using GNOME as an example of support….this is thier game, it not GNOME’s and we might never get a chance to rebuke.. Having 2 standards is OK and all the rest. You cannot walk this tight rope for ever, you bound to fall off..

  49. Roy Schestowitz said,

    November 26, 2007 at 12:57 am

    Gravatar

    …you could be spreading the truth and uniting our community against credible threads.

    Neither Novell nor GNOME (nor anything else which is to do with Linux) is a threat. OOXML is one among many threats to Linux. I see several people in the community who lend a hand to OOXML as an ISO standard (even if they do not actively support it or admit this). If we say nothing, Microsoft will continue to tell people that even its rivals welcome the arrival as the OOXML locki…errr… standard.

    I have seen enough people, countries, bodies, senators (whatever… you name it) being influenced in a variety of ways by Microsoft in order to defend the Microsoft monopoly. It would be sad to see additions to that list of what I choose to call “sellouts” at best and “traitors” at worst.

  50. Jeff Waugh said,

    November 26, 2007 at 1:02 am

    Gravatar

    So go on and fight your battle against the whole community

    We’re definitely not battling the “whole community”. Quite a number of people have contacted us to say thank you, because we’re “keeping our friends close and our enemies closer”. I have no concern that everyone in the FLOSS community is as unreasonable and hate-filled as you.

  51. Roy Schestowitz said,

    November 26, 2007 at 1:11 am

    Gravatar

    …hate-filled as you.

    Hate? No. I’ve seen over time how people try to portray us as “Stallman”, as “Jihad”, as “Nazis”, as radicals, purists and all sorts of things. Are you trying to build to a stereotype (or Big Lie) and stick a label to one’s forehead?

    We’re alert. We’ve seen time and time again how money is used against Free software (consider SCO, for starters), so our suspicion is justified.

  52. rlilly@yahoo.com said,

    November 26, 2007 at 1:18 am

    Gravatar

    There you go again with the personal attacks again and again. It begins to show signs of some one hiding something. Nothing I have said is hateful. My comments are distubing you because there is the element of truth..

    How you can still sit there and say that GNOME by way of its activities, even by mistake cannot help/aid in OOXML becoming a standard only makes one suspecious. Especially since the Miguels, Jody, Meeks, and others past and present peripheral associated with GNOME from Novell or simple followers, make statements/actions supporting OOXML. Sure these types pushing the Novell/MS agenda will say thank you! They got you sold.

  53. Jeff Waugh said,

    November 26, 2007 at 1:20 am

    Gravatar

    We’re alert. We’ve seen time and time again how money is used against Free software (consider SCO, for starters), so our suspicion is justified.

    Ah, there you are again, taking into question the integrity of GNOME Foundation directors including myself and by association in the article, my wife.

    The issue here is not whether you suspect it, it’s whether you try to find out if it’s true before you go shooting off at the mouth about it. In the earlier article, you asked the questions, you made the insinuations, and then you weaseled your way out of it by saying, “oh, we don’t know the answer to these, but they sure are interesting questions”.

  54. Roy Schestowitz said,

    November 26, 2007 at 1:31 am

    Gravatar

    There you go again with the personal attacks again and again. It begins to show signs of some one hiding something. Nothing I have said is hateful. My comments are distubing you because there is the element of truth..

    If there was no element of truth, he would not spend so much time rebutting what is said here, either.

  55. Jeff Waugh said,

    November 26, 2007 at 1:38 am

    Gravatar

    If there was no element of truth, he would not spend so much time rebutting what is said here, either.

    I spend the time here because there is NO element of truth whatsoever, and you are irresponsibly telling lies and making insinuations (including about me and my wife).

    This is your FUD again, after you have not done the absolute basics of research to prove any of what you are insinuating.

    Absolutely shameful.

  56. Roy Schestowitz said,

    November 26, 2007 at 2:32 am

    Gravatar

    You’re repeating the same ad hominen attacks (attacking both the messenger and the message, with prejudice).

  57. @w'e"eät said,

    November 26, 2007 at 3:19 am

    Gravatar

    You are just a weasel, Roy. Shelling out another series of not-researched articles today as every day. You don’t want to learn, you don’t want to listen. Nasty, groin-level speculations, accusation, spreading fear, uncertainty, doubt and paranoia among Linux-users, like the little, mean troll you are.

    You are a disgrace to the Linux-community, Roy.

    Note: comment has been flagged for arriving from a known, pseudonymous, nymshifting, abusive Internet troll

  58. Slated said,

    November 27, 2007 at 10:42 am

    Gravatar

    Jeff likes direct questions, so here’s some:

    1) … Why is it so important to you that the discussions between you and Roy be held in private, rather than on this site?

    2) … If a company like Google can pro-actively oppose OOXML, why can’t the Gnome Foundation?

    3) … What is the point of pushing for better documentation in a not-really-open standard (binary blobs) like OOXML, that is a moving target, and which even Microsoft will not commit any guarantee of future support to?

    4) … “Evangelising” is not only a term used by Microsoft, it’s an actual (paid) job description. Wouldn’t you say that helping (in any capacity) Microsoft’s OOXML become a standard, essentially makes the Gnome Foundation OOXML evangelists?

    5) … Do you think it is a wise, clever, useful, or even necessary thing to introduce, or otherwise promote, proprietary and/or encumbered Microsoft standards into the Free Software tree, such as OOXML, Silverlight and Mono?

    6) … If the Gnome Foundation does not (as you seem to be suggesting) have any official policy on support for Microsoft’s standards, don’t you think that it should?

    If there was an official policy, that would end all the speculation once and for all, and then you wouldn’t need to spend your time “moderating” the comments on this site.

  59. Roy Schestowitz said,

    November 27, 2007 at 1:04 pm

    Gravatar

    7) … If this Web site is so ‘wrong’, why have you spent so much time confronting the message and attacking the messenger?

  60. erehwon said,

    November 27, 2007 at 1:53 pm

    Gravatar

    I have been using and installing GNU/Linux distros for a number of years on older, less capable computers. Usually, that was Red Hat, White Box, or Centos. It was always vaguely annoying that I had to accept the GNOME desktop as a default, and then fiddle with it after installation to make KDE the default.

    When it became obvious some years ago that Miguel di Icaza really wanted to work for Micro$oft, and not Ximian, or later, Novell, and when he insisted that OOo use java based applications, *even though* at that time Sun had not open sourced the Java platform, I became suspicious of anything he promoted. Others in the community echoed what are now Jeff Waugh’s apologias for Miguel. But I disagreed, even way back then

    My response was, “Yes, he should be sanctioned, removed from any position of authority, respect or control in the Open Source Community. If he wants to work for Micro$oft, he should move to 1 Microsoft Way, and leave his integrity at the gates of the campus, just as Bill Hilf did a couple of years ago.”

    I have done a lot of reading about this issue lately, including Pamela’s blog, and most of the Newspick links in the sidebar. Wandering through the tech news has broadened my grasp of the controversy, and has provided me with a pretty solid grounding in the roots of the disagreements, and helped me form, or more accurately, ‘reinforce’ my initial impressons of the integrity of the current GNOME Foundation’s spokesmen.

    Waugh seems to think that this is a tempest in a teapot, or that it will all blow over. I believe that it is the beginning of the end of the GNOME project unless Miguel is dumped overboard as shark bait, and Jeff Waugh is put into the figurative stocks, in the commons, with a dunce cap on his head. His wife can share his ignomy, so far as I’m concerned, simply for writing all her “You meanies are picking on my dear sweet husband” posts.

    If Jeff WAugh were to email me and tell me it was raining, I’d go to my door and put my h and out to verify the information. Just my personal opinion, and of course, YMMV.

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