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 24/2/2017: Ubuntu 17.04 Beta, OpenBSD Foundation Nets $573,000 in Donations

    Links for the day



  2. IAM, Greased up by the EPO, Continues Lobbying by Shaming Tactics for the UPC, Under the Guise of 'News'

    The shrill and well-paid writers of IAM are still at it, promoting the Unitary Patent (UPC) at every opportunity and every turn



  3. Patent Scope Gone Awry: European Vegetable Patents Office?

    In its misguided race to raise so-called 'production', the EPO lost sight of its original goals and now facilitates patent royalty payments/taxation for naturally-recurring items of nature



  4. Yes, There is Definitely Brain Drain (Experience Deficit) at the European Patent Office and Stakeholders Feel It

    The direction that the European Patent Office has taken under Battistelli undoes many decades (almost half a century) of reputation-building and progress and naturally this repels existing staff, not to mention hampers recruitment efforts



  5. The Sickness of the EPO – Part IV: Cruel Management That Deliberately Attacks the Sick and the Weak

    The dysphoric reality at the European Patent Office, which is becoming like a large cell (with bolted-down windows) where people are controlled by fear and scapegoats are selected to perpetuate this atmosphere of terror and maintain demand (or workload) for the Investigative Stasi



  6. Links 23/2/2017: Qt 5.9 Alpha, First SHA1 Collision

    Links for the day



  7. UPC Roundup: War on the Appeal Boards, British Motion Against the UPC, Fröhlinger Recalled, and Fake News About Spain

    Taking stock of some of the latest attempts to shove the Unitary Patent (UPC) down Europe's throat, courtesy of Team Battistelli and Team UPC



  8. The Sickness of the EPO – Part III: Invalidity and Suicides

    An explanation of what drives a lot of EPO veterans to depression and sometimes even suicide



  9. The Appeal Board (PTAB) and Federal Circuit (CAFC) Maintain Good Pace of Patent Elimination Where Scope Was Exceeded

    The Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (CAFC) continues to accept about 4 out of 5 decisions of the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) and the US Supreme Court (SCOTUS) refuses to intervene



  10. Software Patents Are Ebbing Away, But the “Swamp” Fights Back and Hijacks the Word “Fix”

    The club of patent maximalists, or those who profit from excess prosecution and legal chaos, isn't liking what has happened in the United States and it wants everything reversed



  11. Report From Yesterday's Debate About the European Patent Office (EPO) at the Bavarian Landtag

    A report of the EPO debate which took place at the Bavarian Landtag yesterday (21/2/2017)



  12. Links 22/2/2017: Wine-Staging 2.2, Nautilus 3.24

    Links for the day



  13. French Politician Richard Yung Tells the Government About Abuses at the European Patent Office (EPO)

    The subject of EPO scandals has once again landed in French politics, just a couple of months since it last happened



  14. The Sickness of the EPO – Part II: Background Information and Insights

    With a privatised, in-house (sometimes outsourced and for-profit) force for surveillance, policing, justice, public relations and now medical assessment (mere vassals or marionettes of the management) the EPO serves to show that it has become indistinguishable from North Korea, where the Supreme Leader gets to control every single aspect (absolutely no separation of powers)



  15. EPO Cartoon/Caricature by KrewinkelKrijst

    A new rendition by Dutch cartoonist and illustrator KrewinkelKrijst



  16. Inverting Narratives: IAM 'Magazine' Paints Massive Patent Bully Microsoft (Preying on the Weak) as a Defender of the Powerless

    Selective coverage and deliberate misinterpretation of Microsoft's tactics (patent settlement under threat, disguised as "pre-installation of some of the US company’s software products") as seen in IAM almost every week these days



  17. The Sickness of the EPO – Part I: Motivation for New Series of Articles

    An introduction or prelude to a long series of upcoming posts, whose purpose is to show governance by coercion, pressure, retribution and tribalism rather than professional relationship between human beings at the European Patent Office (EPO)



  18. Insensitivity at the EPO’s Management – Part VII: EPO Hypocrisy on Cancer and Lack of Feedback to and From ECPC

    The European Cancer Patient Coalition (ECPC), which calls itself "the largest European cancer patients' umbrella organisation," fails to fulfill its duties, says a source of ours, and the EPO makes things even worse



  19. Links 21/2/2017: KDE Plasma 5.9.2 in Chakra GNU/Linux, pfSense 2.3.3

    Links for the day



  20. EPO Caricature: Battistelli's Wall

    Battistelli's solution to everything at the EPO is exclusion and barriers



  21. The 'New' Microsoft is Still Acting Like a Dangerous Cult in an Effort to Hijack and/or Undermine All Free/Open Source Software

    In an effort to combat any large deployment of non-Microsoft software, the company goes personal and attempts to overthrow even management that is not receptive to Microsoft's agenda



  22. PTAB Petitioned to Help Against Patent Troll InfoGation Corp., Which Goes After Linux/Android OEMs in China

    A new example of software patents against Free software, or trolls against companies that are distributing freedom-respecting software from a country where these patents are not even potent (they don't exist there)



  23. Links 20/2/2017: Linux 4.10, LineageOS Milestone

    Links for the day



  24. No, Doing Mathematical Operations on a Processor Does Not Make Algorithms Patent-Eligible

    Old and familiar tricks -- a method for tricking examiners into the idea that algorithms are actual machines -- are being peddled by Watchtroll again



  25. Paid-for UPC Proponent, IAM 'Magazine', Debunked on UPC Again

    The impact of the corrupted (by EPO money) media goes further than one might expect and even 'borrows' out-of-date news in order to promote the UPC



  26. Lack of Justice in and Around the EPO Drawing Scrutiny

    The status of the EPO as an entity above the law (in Germany, the Netherlands, Switzerland and so on) is becoming the subject of press reports and staff is leaving in large numbers



  27. Links 19/2/2017: GParted 0.28.1, LibreOffice Donations Record

    Links for the day



  28. The EPO is Becoming an Embarrassment to Europe and a Growing Threat to the European Union

    The increasingly pathetic moves by Battistelli and the ever-declining image/status of the EPO (only 0% of polled stakeholders approve Battistelli's management) is causing damage to the reputation of the European Union, even if the EPO is not a European Union organ but an international one



  29. Patent Misconceptions Promoted by the Patent Meta-Industry

    Cherry-picking one's way into the perception of patent eligibility for software and the misguided belief that without patents there will be no innovation



  30. As the United States Shuts Its Door on Low-Quality Patents the Patent Trolls Move to Asia

    Disintegration of Intellectual Ventures (further shrinkage after losing software patents at CAFC), China's massive patent bubble, and Singapore's implicit invitation/facilitation of patent trolls (bubble economy)


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