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

02.14.08

Fighting for Its Survival, Microsoft Corrupts with OOXML

Posted in Antitrust, Apple, ECMA, Finance, Formats, Fraud, ISO, Microsoft, Open XML, Standard at 9:13 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

When logic comes together…

The previous post explained why Microsoft’s strategy is only to drag time when it comes to its unsubstantiated, unproven claims against GNU/Linux. It is very much the opposite when it comes to OOXML, which Microsoft tried to fast-track (and subversively did). The longer it’s out there in the wild, the more scrutiny it is going to fall under. And scrutiny OOXML shall have! Here is some of the latest.

OOXML: Microsoft Windows-only, Microsoft Office-only

Microsoft is striding all over the place (even spamming YouTube) to give people the illusion that OOXML makes not just a representation of a single product from a single vendor. Actual users are not buying it (neither the argument nor Microsoft’s products) and it shows.

First of all, I will like to point out that the format of documents produced by Microsoft Office 2007 is not OOXML (Ecma 376). Microsoft Office 2007 documents contains, according to my sources, many elements not specified in Ecma 376, such as binary code, macros, OLE objects, ActiveX, DRM and SharePoint metadata.

[...]

I do not own a license for Microsoft Office 2008 for Mac, and I will not buy one either. It might be possible to open documents produced by Microsoft Office 2008 for Mac with iWork ‘08, iPhone or NeoOffice, but that is irrelevant. One of the major points with interoperability, is vendor independence. If I have to buy a license for Microsoft Office 2008 for Mac, Microsoft has succeeded in creating a standard so difficult — not to say impossible — to implement, that users will have to buy Microsoft’s software.

As a final statement, I would like to point out that the allegations on OOXML beeing implemented in iWork ‘08, iPhone and NeoOffice are wrong.

How about macros?

The ECMA/Microsoft’s answer is not providing anything to be sure your macro will be interpreted in the same way on all platforms (Windows, Linux, OSX, Plan9, VxWorks, etc…):

ECMA is truly becoming a disgrace because every single country appears to be complaining about unreasonable excuses and no consideration from ECMA. Rather than aspiring to produce standards, ECMA becomes just a tool for fending off critics on behalf on Microsoft, which pays ECMA’s bills.

OOXML is the Past, Not the Future

It is becoming very clear that OOXML is filled with a baggage of legacy code. There is no point denying it, but since the BRM in Geneva has already been corrupted [1, 2, 3, 4, 5]), there is no point raising it, either.

I believe the backwards compatibility with the documents of a single vendor is totally unsuitable for an international standard. And it is impossible to verify if the OOXML formats represents legacy formats more faithfully than the existing ISO standard. Unfortunately the ISO process does not permit to raise this issue at the BRM. This seems to me an indication that the ISO process is broken as it does not offer room to discuss what really matters.

The Open Malaysia blog has some more new examples of this.

The “existing corpus of binary documents” is Ecma’s stock solution to most of Malaysia’s comments. Instead of cleaning things up, they give the impression that they are brushing things under the carpet and putting the burden of document fidelity on the shoulders of future developers instead of addressing it today. This is a fixable problem which can be handled by todays conversion software. Let’s put an end to the propagation of 20 year old bugs once and for all.

The last long post could be put under multiple different headings because it shows:

  1. That ECMA is indeed what some call “a Microsoft shill”
  2. OOXML is all about Microsoft Office
  3. OOXML contains a legacy mess, including software bugs

It is truly shame that the world’s standardisation framework can be not only fooled, but also corrupted like this. In case you did not realise this, the fight for OOXML is the fight for the continued relevance of Microsoft’s biggest cash cow amid serious Microsoft troubles. The company has not only lost a great deal of its cash reserves, but yesterday it also lost some of its most senior people, who abruptly quit the company, joining many others.

As several major publications (including the Wall Street Journal) have stated recently, Microsoft is fighting for its long-term survival. As such, unacceptable (even vile) behaviour is only to be expected from a multiple-time convicted monopolist which is currently under 3 separate antitrust investigations in the European Union.

Related articles:

OOXML is fraud

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

6 Comments

  1. Stephane Rodriguez said,

    February 15, 2008 at 3:30 am

    Gravatar

    One fresh news,

    67 bricks CTO (Inigo Surguy) appointed as principal expert for the UK representing BSI in Geneva’s BRM later this month.

    http://www.openpr.com/news/37305/67-Bricks-Chief-Technologist-appointed-Principal-UK-Expert-in-OOXML.html

    A quick Google research on Inigo Surguy shows up the following,

    http://www.xmlopen.org/ooxml-wiki/index.php/User:Inigo.surguy

    “Inigo Surguy, former employee of CSW Group who are members of the ODF Alliance, as well as being a Microsoft Gold Certified Partner. My current employer is 67 Bricks, who are in the Microsoft Empower programme.”

    Which is confirmed by this :

    http://www.csw.co.uk/about/partners.asp

    Color me unimpressed. One more bribed Microsoft-sponsored business partner speaking on behalf of an entire country…

    And, of course, UK’s BSI voted NO back in September. So that makes perfect sense to appoint a Microsoft-compatible person.

  2. Stephane Rodriguez said,

    February 15, 2008 at 3:35 am

    Gravatar

    In your post, you said “That ECMA is indeed what some call “a Microsoft shill””

    In fact, no, ECMA TC45 is owned by Microsoft since they are co-chairing it. (Jean Paoli and someone else). If you don’t know what to expect from this guy, just read Tim Bray’s XML 10-year anniversary.

    Whenever you hear about Microsoft employees talk about working in tandem with ECMA TC 45 people, going at great length to refer to them as external and independent persons, you really have to make an effort not to laugh hard.

  3. Roy Schestowitz said,

    February 15, 2008 at 4:15 am

    Gravatar

    Thank you, Stephane. I’ll blog your insights, spread the word and cite them as valuable reference in the future.

    BSI: Another crack in the BRM. Are Ireland and Portugal still sending Microsoft to represent them?

  4. hAl said,

    February 15, 2008 at 3:30 pm

    Gravatar

    Strange the BSI is apperantly represented by a ODF alliance member.
    I wonder how many ODF alliance members will be present in Geneva, and especially how many IBM, Sun and FFII members as well.

    Also strange, Microsoft has only one vote out of 12 in the ECMA TC (as Ecma member always can have only one vote on a matter) whilst IBM and Sun together own 70% of the votes in the OASIS TC.

    Mainly strange because you are not mentioning these facts

  5. hAl said,

    February 15, 2008 at 3:32 pm

    Gravatar

    [quote]Microsoft Office 2007 documents contains, according to my sources, many elements not specified in Ecma 376, such as binary code, macros, OLE objects, ActiveX, DRM and SharePoint metadata. [/quote]

    All of which does not make the files nonconforming to OOXML.
    You should note that all of these item can also be part of ODF files.

  6. Roy Schestowitz said,

    February 15, 2008 at 4:09 pm

    Gravatar

    But they are not.

    I know your position, hAl. I’ve seen your feedback elsewhere and the following reply was about to be sent (I don’t know if it was):


    OOXML getting ready to load up the Geneva room

    Hal is one of the key people pushing for the ISO standardization of OOXML, for Microsoft left the following comment in response to the article OOXML questions Microsoft cannot answer in Geneva:

    “You suggest these are questions about OOXML that can’t be answered by Microsoft during the BRM. But point you are totally missing is that Microsoft is not a party in the BRM meeting and as such cannot even comment on things in the BRM until after it is been completed. The BRM is a meeting between ISO members and standards group Ecma about improving the OOXML specification and not about 90% of the questions you suggest.

    Your post shows a complete lack of understanding of the standardization process. I suggest you read up on the blog of the BRM convernor Alex Brown who for instance states that non comments can be handled which regards to any (reference)implementations of OOXML as that falls outside of the scope of the BRM meeting. So any of your questions about MS office are totally inappropriate for this meeting.
    http://adjb.net/

    Hal, you are right, I have a complete lack of understanding of the standardization process and “standard” you are participating in and aggressively promoting for ISO approval. Frankly, it is egregious that the format being submitted is not even the format implemented and will never be. Yes, Microsoft cannot answer those questions on Microsoft Office, IPR, contradictions, goals/policies and other issues at the BRM as per the rules. It is only about the new cosmetic text! But what I am suggesting is that, not only can they not, they could not or would not in general. They are trying not to!

    So, under no circumstances should there be a vote at the BRM until all the issues/comments raised by all the NBs are resolved. They are entitled to it and so are the citizens of their countries. The BRM is closed to the media and the public, essentially closed just like the whole standardization process of “Office Closed XML” has been. Everything is almost done secretly. What is there to hide? Why the fear of scrutiny?

    Critical issues have not been addressed. OOXML will not be voted on based just on the synthetic changes to a pieces of paper which looks goods, but still has many problems. Only because of an effective presentation and the loading up of the room ready to vote “Yes” does it stand a chance.

    Yes, Microsoft is back to playing games and Stuffing It UP ready to ramstack the room with pigeons from the Philippines, Chile, Portugal, Venezuela, Spain And other countries with no interest in standards, never even reviewed the spec and request a vote. THEY TRY TO STEAL IT RIGHT THERE BY CONSENSUS!

    I believe most people would agree at this point that ECMA is simply acting as a proxy for MS. MS does pay their bills, doesn’t it? In Geneva the bus system works on the honor system. You buy a ticket and get on. You can also get on without a ticket. MS has gotten on the bus without one too many times. An erroneous un-reviewed spec such as the one ECMA/MS submitted (fast-track even) to ISO is then being pushed through by subversive tactics, but it still has no ticket. It’s time for an inspector to get on the bus and throw Microsoft out.

    To our readers, we ask that you please contact the National Board in your country, and request complete resolution for all issues raised by the comments to Microsoft’s OOXML ISO application. Please be sure to insist that both the technical and non-technical issues be completely resolved as a pre-condition before OOXML is granted ISO status. You can find your delegates here: http://www.noooxml.org/delegations

What Else is New


  1. Links 7/12/2016: ROSA Desktop Fresh R8 Plasma 5, Ubuntu Touch OTA-14

    Links for the day



  2. The UPC Scam Part VII: A Fine Mess in the Making, as Nothing Can be Made of It Amid/After Brexit

    The final part in this multi-part series about UPC, which cannot be implemented in the UK as long as Brexit is on the agenda



  3. The UPC Scam Part VI: The Real Story Which People Missed Due to Puff Pieces Seeded by Battistelli-Bribed Media is That UPC Technically Cannot Come to the UK

    Another long installment in a multi-part series about UPC at times of post-truth Battistelli-led EPO, which pays the media to repeat the lies and pretend that the UPC is inevitable so as to compel politicians to welcome it regardless of desirability and practicability



  4. EPO Spiraling Down the Drain as Experienced Examiners and Judges Are Seemingly Being Replaced by Interns

    Implementing yet more of his terrible ideas and so-called 'reforms', Battistelli seems to be racing to the bottom of everything (patent quality, staff experience, labour rights, working conditions, access to justice etc.)



  5. A Lot of News From the Supreme Court (SCOTUS) Today, With Some Important Decisions on Patents Coming Soon

    A roundup of today's outcomes from the US Supreme Court, which intends to review and decide on important patent cases



  6. In Historic Blow to Design Patents, Apple Loses to Samsung at the Supreme Court

    A $399 million judgment against Android devices from Samsung, with potential implications for other Android OEMs, is rejected by SCOTUS



  7. Good Riddance. Ray Niro is Dead.

    The infamous father of patent trolling is dead, so we need to remember his real legacy rather than rewrite his history to appease his rich relatives (enriched by destroying real companies)



  8. EPO Suicides Greater in Number Than is Widely Reported, Unjust System a Contributor to These

    The horrible regime of Benoît Battistelli has an enormous human toll (fatalities), far greater than the Office is willing to publicly acknowledge



  9. Lobbying Disguised as 'Reporting' by the Patent Microcosm, Which Wants More Patents and More Lawsuits (Lawyers Needed)

    A rebuttal to some new articles about patents, especially those that strive to increase patent-related activities (usually for personal gain)



  10. USPTO Echo Chamber That Lacks Actual Software Professionals Deciding on Patentability of Software

    A look at yesterday's "Roundtable on Patent Subject Matter Eligibility," which lacked involvement from those actually affected by patents rather than those who sell, trade, and exploit these



  11. More Examples of Microsoft and Its Patent Trolls Taxing Linux, Even After Microsoft 'Joined' (Paid) the Linux Foundation

    A quick look at the past week's news and clues about Microsoft's (and its broad army of patent trolls) strategy for taxing Linux, or imposing bundling at zero cost (to Microsoft)



  12. Heiko Maas, the SPD “Cash for Access” Affair, and Suspicions of Unwarranted Censorship at IP Kat (Again)

    Unsayable views or just a glitch? Readers of IP Kat express concern about a culture of censorship at IP Kat



  13. Endgame for Battistelli at the European Patent Office (EPO)

    Battistelli turns bad into worse by spitting on the very notion of accepting justice (from the highest court in The Hague or even the UN in this case)



  14. Les Échos Chamber: Having Corrupted the Media (With EPO Money), Battistelli Now Uses It for More UPC Propaganda

    The lies about the Unitary Patent are now being broadcast (Battistelli given the platform) by the publication that Battistelli pays



  15. Rumour: EPO in Berlin the Next Casualty of Battistelli's 'Reform' (Organisational Suicide Plan)

    Months after we learned that a former staff representative in Berlin had been dismissed we come across an anonymous claim that Berlin's 'branch' of the EPO will be folded onto Munich's



  16. Caricature: the Maas App

    The failure of Maas to even bother with regulation of Battistelli (among others) earns him this cartoon



  17. Links 5/12/2016: Linux 4.9 RC 8, DeepMind as FOSS

    Links for the day



  18. Leaked: Battistelli Acknowledges Bunk 'Justice' in About 100 Cases at the Internal Appeals Committee of the EPO

    A look at Battistelli's response to the latest from the International Labour Organisation (ILO), exceptionally delivering two decisions at the very end of last month



  19. The UPC Scam Part V: Unitary Patent Regime a Fantasy of Patent Trolls

    "Good for trolls" is a good way to sum up the Unitary Patent, which would give litigators plenty of business (defendants and plaintiffs, plus commissions on high claims of damages) if it ever became a reality



  20. EPO at a Tipping Point: Battistelli Quarrelling With French Politicians, Administrative Council Urged to Act, Staff Unrest Peaking

    The latest messages about Battistelli's regime at the EPO, which faces growing opposition from more directions than ever before



  21. Quality of Patents at the EPO Dependent on the Appeal Boards When Battistelli Assesses Performance Using the Wrong 'Production' Yardstick

    A look at some recent articles regarding patent quality in the US and in Europe, in particular because of growing trouble at today's EPO, which marginalises the appeal boards



  22. Microsoft's Push for Software Patents Another Reminder That There is No 'New' Microsoft

    Microsoft's continued fascination with and participation in the effort to undermine Alice so as to make software patents, which the company uses to blackmail GNU/Linux vendors, widely acceptable and applicable again



  23. Links 5/12/2016: SparkyLinux 4.5 Released, Kondik Exits Cyanogen (Destroyed After Microsoft Deal)

    Links for the day



  24. Software Patents Continue Their Invalidation Process, But Patent Law Firms Try to Deny This in Order to Attract Misinformed (or Poorly-Informed) Clients

    A roundup of news about software patents and demonstration of the sheer bias in the media, which is mostly controlled or steered by the patent microcosm rather than actual inventors



  25. Patent Trolls of Microsoft and Ericsson Are Trying to Tax Everything, Especially Linux Devices

    An update on Intellectual Ventures and Unwired Planet, whose operations pose a growing problem for Free software and Linux-based products (e.g. Android)



  26. Asia's Patent Litigation Chaos Getting Worse, Reaching Countries in the West, and Sites Like IAM Actively Promote This

    The race to the bottom (of patent quality) in China, the growth of patent trolls in the region, and the ruinous litigation strategy which now spills over even to the US -- through the Eastern District of Texas -- and may inevitably come to Europe (especially if the UPC ever becomes a reality)



  27. More French Politicians Are Complaining That Benoît Battistelli is a Disgrace to France and Urge for Action

    The backlash against Battistelli spills well outside the EPO and is now apparent even at the French National Assembly



  28. Links 3/12/2016: Mageia 5.1 Released, Mozilla Revenue at $421.3M

    Links for the day



  29. Canadian Intellectual Property Office (CIPO) Sees Decline in Patent Applications and It May Actually be a Good Thing

    Challenging the false belief that the more patents society has the better off it will be, citing examples and news from north America



  30. Blockchain Domain Infested With Software Patents, MasterCard Among the Culprits

    Worrying signs that an area of Free/Open Source software innovation is getting impacted by the plague of software patents


CoPilotCo

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

CoPilotCo

Recent Posts