EditorsAbout the SiteComes vs. MicrosoftUsing This Web SiteSite ArchivesCredibility IndexOOXMLOpenDocumentPatentsNovellNews DigestSite NewsRSS


Quick Mention: OOXML/GNOME Podcast Finally Online, Text Summary Posted

Posted in Audio/Video, ECMA, Free/Libre Software, GNOME, GNU/Linux, Open XML, OSI at 11:06 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

An article which summarises the recent podcast has just been published along with an IRC log and an MP3 file (no Ogg Vorbis apparently). As Bruce Byfield correctly points out, the session was calm, not hostile. That’s what ODF advocates wanted and gently asked for. ODF ‘civil wars’ harm everyone, as demonstrated by a certain Foundation. Here is the goal that united everyone, including Marbux, Edwards, and Hiser.

Both sides are clearly concerned with what’s best for free software, differing only in how they define their objective. That is a small point, but perhaps this realization can finally start to put the issue in perspective.

People have already expressed doubt or raised some question there. Although I rarely read comments, one of them questioned the credibility of my arguments, so I responded with evidence. Here is the gist of counter arguments, as summarised by reliable sources:

  • FFII: “Microsoft Office 2007 produces a special version of OOXML, not a file format which complies with the OOXML specification”
  • Jody Goldberg: “The binary blobs are in exactly the same format as the old binary formats. Michael [Meeks] and I cracked it a few years back (see libgsf, or OO.o). We can read and write it.”
  • From Sun blogs (about OpenOffice.org): “We are not working on export filters, that is, filters that save OOXML documents. ” No round-trip.

Personal attacks typically replace requests for facts and proof. All one has to do is ask for references, rather than shoot the messenger, which is easier and more convenient sometimes.

Share this post: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Reddit
  • co.mments
  • DZone
  • email
  • Google Bookmarks
  • LinkedIn
  • NewsVine
  • Print
  • Technorati
  • TwitThis
  • Facebook

If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

Pages that cross-reference this one


  1. Stephane Rodriguez said,

    December 7, 2007 at 2:54 am


    Jody Goldberg needs to know better.

    When it comes to non-XML stuff, there is a ton of things to say that he does not even mention. I hope this is just because he has a plane to take or something like that. I would hate to learn that this is just ignorance.

    Let me just give a couple starting points.

    The new document environment encompasses non-XML stuff such as BIFF11+ and BIFF12. This is not XML stuff, and it even contradicts ECMA 376 and Microsoft claims about moving to XML. Obviously, if we take BIFF11+ and BIFF12, these are two new file formats, this also contradicts Jody’s statement that “these are the same”.

    As for “regular” undocumented binary pieces such as VBA macros, the file format itself is unchanged (and not part of Microsoft’s covenant not to sue btw), but it’s wrapped under a new container and, on the other hand, VBA macros now have explicit link attributes right within XML streams (GUID, codename, …) which did not exist at all in previous versions of the file format. Therefore, here again, Jody is proven wrong.

  2. Stephane Rodriguez said,

    December 7, 2007 at 2:57 am


    As for the podcast, I’ve found it of appalling quality. My only comment is that some of the intervenants sounded the same than Brian Jones and Doug Mahugh (both Microsoft employees) when those guys did a couple podcasts a while back. The tone, the view angle, the so-called benefits for everyone, not a single marketing point was missing.

    This confirms what I thought about the Deicazaification of otherwise intelligent persons.

  3. Roy Schestowitz said,

    December 7, 2007 at 3:14 am


    I didn’t prepare for the podcast in any way (no intentions to). Based on feedback I’ve received (via E-mail), this may have been somewhat of a set-up. They tried this with somebody else who promptly declined. Regardless, I’d agree with you that the quality was poor.

    Be aware that I’m a 25-year-old and should by no means be perceived as a spokesman or representative for anything.The dispute involved Jeff and myself and shouldn’t be generalised and seen as something beyond this.

    In practice, the session didn’t have questions they had collected actually asked at all (people passed questions for them to ask Jeff). Instead, it was just some awkward silence with off-topic discussions and rambling. Jeff didn’t even go on the air until about 15 minutes after the start. As people have said in some places, this was unorganised. Oh, and don’t get me started about those stalkers from USENET sticking their personal insults in various places around the podcast. It’s the usual character assassination which they also do in Digg. I recognise these people easily.

    I haven’t read the text of articles carefully, but I knew from the start that Bruce Byfield is somewhat of a friend of Jeff (they corresponded before). Some would try calling it a set-up (I don’t really believe this personally), but being silent would not have achieved much either.

  4. Stephane Rodriguez said,

    December 7, 2007 at 4:23 am


    To wrap up on the podcast, I would say that almost no question was asked and allowed to be answered anyway. The one I would like to get an answer : how does it feel for a so-called open-source group such as Gnome to be Microsoft best friends? So far, Microsoft has got all the marketing PR they wanted from “open-source” groups that are remarkably compatible with Microsoft minds. Again, I think those guys are just Microsoft persons who take a pride not to be on their payroll. (DeIcaza told me in the past that he’s rich).

    The podcast was mostly politically correct, and is therefore useless to shed a light on Gnome/Novell/Goldberg actual doings and intentions. (not that you will get them to admit openly what they are doing anyway).

    DeIcaza took the role of Brian Jones, the technical person. (technical person who concentrates on never answering the good questions)
    JeffWaugh took the role of Doug Mahugh, the evangelist (communicates well, uses politics for cover)

  5. Hmmm said,

    December 7, 2007 at 12:39 pm


    I find it amusing that you guys get so upset when people use personal attacks against you, yet you do the same every day to Jody Goldberg, Miguel de Icaza, Microsoft employees, and now Bruce Byfield.

    Treat others the same as you’d have them treat you.

  6. Stephane Rodriguez said,

    December 7, 2007 at 12:54 pm


    Personal attacks? Those guys have become the Canada Dry of open-source. What’s wrong with calling them for what they are doing?

  7. Roy Schestowitz said,

    December 7, 2007 at 1:24 pm


    I find it amusing that you guys get so upset when people use personal attacks against you

    When I talk about personal attacks, I typically talk about:

    • Outright libel. Examples include: Roy is castrated, Roy is gay, Roy has a criminal record, Roy molests children, etc. – some of that slanderous stuff is being posted to forums by people who even fake my own identity (pretending to post as myself). It’s character assassination based upon bald-face lies and ‘placements’ of these lies in the Web.
    • Throwing the baby out with the bathwater. On numerous occasions, people have nitpicked and found inaccurate bits in one (or more) among ~1,600 posts. This happens not only here, but in other sites as well. Everyone makes a few mistakes sometimes, but rarely is it deliberate (if ever). These cases of nitpicking were used to assassinate one’s credibility. This type of personal attack targets the messenger also.

    Have we used any such tactics/arguments to discredit the work of the individuals above? Have we merely spoken about their affiliations and attitude towards certain technologies? Have we quoted them selectively to isolate evidence?

  8. Victor Soliz said,

    December 8, 2007 at 8:07 am


    I say we begin to call OOXML what it really stands for “Optionally open XML” instead of “Open office XML” it is a name that explains the truth about its openness and avoids any confusion.

  9. Roy Schestowitz said,

    December 8, 2007 at 1:55 pm


    The problem with using such names is similar to the problem posed by use of words like WIndoze and M$. People no longer take your words seriously because they assume a criticism is driven by blind hate.

  10. Charlie said,

    March 23, 2008 at 12:17 pm


    Miguel de Icaza is a shame to the open source community and a massive traitor. He is a brilliant man indeed, but he is more concerned about his little fragile ego and to conceal his sexual orientation and his past, rather than being commited with the open source movement. Everyone who knows him from his early life in Mexico City and the UNAM knows that during his career he has lied in numerous ocassions to preservate the image we wants to give, the one of a cool hacker with a pretty wife and a nice upbringing and brilliant parents. He wrote his own Wikipedia profiles. Both of them. And submited himself to IMBD. He is a lier and an egomaniac and should not be trusted.

    Brilliant man, but so positively, absolutely 100% gay.

    One of his other lies: his dad is not a Physic nor his mother a Biologyst. His dad is a not so brilliant math professor, and his mother remains until present day in a mental institution.

  11. Roy Schestowitz said,

    March 23, 2008 at 12:44 pm


    Charlie, I don’t think personal attacks are quite so appropriate. Let’s discuss a man’s deeds, not a man’s family. Please.

What Else is New

  1. EPO Management Needs to Finally Recognise That It Itself is the Issue, Not the Staff or the Unions

    A showing of dissent even from the representatives whom the EPO tightly controls and why the latest union-busting goes a lot further than most people realise

  2. Even the EPO Central Staff Committee is Unhappy With EPO Management

    The questions asked by the Central Staff Committee shared for the public to see that not only a single union is concerned about the management's behaviour

  3. The Broken Window Economics of Patent Trolls Are Already Coming to Europe

    The plague which is widely known as patent trolls (non-practicing entities that prey on practicing companies) is being spread to Europe, owing in part to misguided policies and patent maximalists

  4. Debunking the EPO's Latest Marketing Nonsense From Les Échos and More on Benoît Battistelli's Nastygram to French Politician

    Our detailed remarks about French brainwash from the EPO's media partner (with Benoît Battistelli extensively quoted) and the concerns increasingly raised by French politicians, who urge for national or even continental intervention

  5. The Sun King Delusion: The Views of Techrights Are Just a Mirror of EPO Staff Unions

    Tackling some emerging spin we have seen coming from Battistelli's private letters -- spin which strives to project the views of Techrights onto staff unions and why it's very hypocritical a form of spin

  6. Links 25/11/2015: Webconverger 33.1, Netrunner 17 Released

    Links for the day

  7. United They Stand: FFPE-EPO Supports Suspended Staff Representatives From SUEPO

    An obscure union from the Dutch side of things at the EPO is expressing support for the suspended colleagues from SUEPO (more German than Dutch)

  8. Censoring WIPR Article About Censorship by EPO

    A testament to how terrified journalists have become when it comes to EPO coverage, to the point of deleting entire paragraphs

  9. Censorship at the EPO Escalates: Now We Have Threats to Sue Publishers

    Having already blocked Techrights, the EPO's management proceeds to further suppressions of speech, impeding its staff's access to independently-distributed information (neither ordinary staff nor management)

  10. Response to Bogus Accusations That EPO Staff Protests Are Really an Attempt to Derail UPC

    Common myths about staff protests in the European Patent Office (EPO) debunked, with some additional background and general perspective on recent events, the unitary patent (UPC) and so on

  11. New Heise Article Makes It Clear That 'Nazi'-Themed Accusations Against the Suspended Board Judge Were Insufficiently Substantiated

    The personal attacks on a judge who was illegally suspended (a so-called 'house ban') increasingly look like the management's own campaign of defamation, mostly intended to marginalise and punish a judge who spoke about serious charges against VP4 (Željko Topić)

  12. Links 24/11/2015: Asus Chromebit CS10, Second Linux 4.4 RC

    Links for the day

  13. European Central Bank Staff Committee Adds to Growing Pressure on Abusive EPO Management

    The staff representatives of the European Central Bank E-mail their colleagues -- with European Central Bank managers' approval -- regarding the European Patent Office and its attacks on staff unions

  14. Gross Violation of Workers' Rights in EPO: Denial of Christmas Vacation/Leave for Slower Workers

    A look at an E-mail from within the EPO which shows how Christmas is used to squeeze staff, urging them to work even faster (despite speed gains) or lose their Christmas leave

  15. The Bogus Narrative Floated by EPO Management: Our Judges and Examiners Are Armed and Violent

    A look at the union-busting and protest-crushing moves from high-level EPO managers, who are trying to convince politicians that they do so in an effort to stop terrorists and neo-Nazis

  16. Support SUEPO or End Up Like They and Some of the Boards Did

    SUEPO, the fast-growing staff union of the EPO, increasingly needs the support and protection offered by action and participation from staff

  17. NRC Handelsblad (Dutch Evening Newspaper) Speaks About EPO's Refusal to Accept Court Orders From The Hague

    Article explains the depths of the issues inside the EPO and the unacceptable immunity that management at the EPO continues to exploit, shaming or discrediting the very notion of the rule of law in Europe

  18. HeBS Digital and Black Duck Press Releases Treated Like Articles, Used to Muddy the FOSS Waters

    Free/Open Source software (FOSS) is under attack again, and it's the proprietary software lobby that's responsible for that

  19. EPO President Battistelli Now Intimidates Even National Delegations

    Report about an embarrassing incident implicating Benoît Battistelli and some angry comments cast over the witch-hunting of a judge, using all sorts of questionable tactics

  20. A Look at the Latest Gross Deletionism at the EPO's 'Media Partner', French Newspaper Les Échos

    The EPO's bogus 'journal of record, which Team Battistelli likes to cite in order to bolster its warped version of events at the EPO while maintaining a close secret relationship with the publisher, keeps censoring its own reporters (spiked paragraphs, silently self-censored or censored after publications)

  21. Rumour About Efforts to Dismiss a Board Judge by Intimidating Boards of Appeal

    Comment found online accuses the Administrative Council of pressuring, by threats, Directorate-General 3 to dismiss a judge who is silently accused (with selective 'leaks' to the media, reportedly orchestrated by EPO managers) but not even proven guilty

  22. President Battistelli Now Pressures/Threatens Politicians Who 'Dare' to Complain About Abuses and Unacceptable Conditions at the EPO

    Pierre-Yves Le Borgn’, a French politician, unleashes an angry letter from Benoît Battistelli and reveals just to what lengths the EPO's Team Battistelli is willing to go in order to crush political backlash

  23. EPO: It's Like a Family Business - Part IV

    Some more background information about Elodie Bergot and Gilles Requena, who are married whilst also sharing positions of power at the EPO (and also strong connections/ties with the EPO's President, Mr. Battistelli); Rumours afloat at the EPO -- some with ever-increasing circulation too -- are worth noting

  24. Translation of Thomas Magenheim-Hörmann's Article in the German Media, Urging European Politicians to Intervene in EPO Chaos and Lawlessness

    Frankfurt-based media presents an opinion piece written by a Munich-based economic correspondent, Thomas Magenheim-Hörmann

  25. German Press Says Broken EPO Lets President Severely Punish Staff Not Even Guilty of Any Wrongdoing

    Juve publishes an article which attempts to be 'balanced' (meaning it believes everything that EPO officials say) but at the same time reveals unacceptable practices that go in inside the EPO

  26. German Media Reveals That Out-of-Control EPO Management is Even Threatening and Abusing Lawyers Now

    The EPO's longstanding fight against justice escalates to an unprecedented war on lawyers themselves; “After this latest move,” says a German newspaper, “even lawyers are starting to feel threatened by the Office.”

  27. Washington Post Only Entertains Debate About Patent Trolls (But Not Patent Scope) Whilst US Lawyers Trick the System to Patent Software

    The Bezos-owned Washington Post continues to help those who wish to eliminate patent trolls (which bother Amazon amongst other large conglomerates) but remains void of any coverage about patent scope, including software patents that patent lawyers work so hard to defend

  28. It Pays (Off) to 'Bribe' the Media: Watch How Les Échos Covers EPO Matters and Self-Censors

    French newspaper Les Échos is self-censoring yet again and it is framing the EPO scandals as the fault of employees, not the fault of abusive managers who are working with Les Échos as a so-called 'media partner' (the EPO management is French-dominated)

  29. 'Leaked' PDF Shows How EPO Management Tried to Crush Judge Who 'Dared' to Criticise EPO Management

    The EPO's management continues to chill potential critics and is now making an example of a board's judge, despite having no such authority over him

  30. Links 21/11/2015: Community Appreciation Day, Jolla's Problems

    Links for the day


RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time


Recent Posts