03.08.08

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Broken Promises: Microsoft Interoperability Already Broken (No GNU/Linux, No ODF)

Posted in Deception, FSF, GNU/Linux, Interoperability, Microsoft, Open XML, OpenDocument, Standard at 2:04 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

“[If I ask you who is Microsoft's biggest competitor now, who would it be?] Open…Linux. I don’t want to say open source. Linux, certainly have to go with that.”

Steve Ballmer, February 28th, 2008

Dana Gardner really tried hard to give Microsoft the benefit of the doubt when he added this new item to his blog and published it in SeekingAlpha (under a different headline). He talked about Microsoft’s interoperability promises (as in “promises, promises”). Here is the bit where he expresses skepticism:

The good news is that Microsoft can change and adapt (a least in its intentions and early deliverables so far). The bad news is that Microsoft can change and adapt, even if they need to hamstring their traditional cash cows to do it.

Microsoft used to want to prevent the need for a web monopoly play (almost impossible by definition) by embracing and extending its way to keeping its monopoly as the gatekeeper to the business and commerce Web. Now it making the bold move to convert its old monopoly into the new largest comprehensive web player. It may not be number one in all things web, but it might be in the top three for most everything web — and that is also the bad news.

Microsoft, the violator of anti-trust laws and the consent decrees and EU rulings, is now poised to become the second source to Google in the ad-supported media world. Meet the new boss, same as the old boss.

No Linux Support from Microsoft

If you believe that Microsoft deserves mistrust, you are correct. Watch how it already excludes Linux, its #1 threat, according to Steve Ballmer. Microsoft is doing this yet again, as it last did on Valentine’s Day.

Microsoft yesterday announced a beta of its Microsoft Office Live Workspace beta, an online platform were users can store documents and share them with others. Reviews of Microsoft Office Live Workspace have been varied but if you’re running Linux you won’t get to use the Live Workspace at all.

No ODF Support from Microsoft

Watch this damning account of so-called ODF support, which Microsoft has already broken before. Ars Technica took it for a test drive.

Ars tests Microsoft’s ODF add-in for Office

[...]

My first test, with Office 2007, was a disappointment. The promised conversion feature was not added to the File menu. I hopped over to the Add-Ins pane on the Options dialog to investigate and found that the ODF add-in had failed to load because of a runtime error. I glanced through the troubleshooting guide and didn’t see any guidance for my specific problem. I tried rebooting, and then reinstalling, but neither fixed the problem.

Technical incompatibilities aside, The FSFE reminds us of the fact that no translator will ever be possible to implement. OOXML is a format representing a platform and an application. It is a vendor format, not a standard. There are many other issues such as patents and fraudulent activities surrounding the standardisation process.

From this new article:

The proposed MS-OOXML/DIS29500 specification raises serious technical and legal concerns. This context briefing highlights three examples of how the proposed specification and its practical implementation in MS Office 2007 hinders interoperability, fosters vendor dependence and results in market distortion.

It does not alleviate concerns that at the ISO Ballot Resolution Meeting for the proposed specification more than 1,000 technical concerns and proposed dispositions required discussion. Participants were only able to discuss between 20 to 30 dispositions and to accept approximately 200 minor editorial corrections in the allocated time. Around 900 dispositions were not discussed.

The Microsoft Brainwash Machine

Microsoft is determined to have people fooled. In particular, a pattern that recurs is one where the company boasts pseudo-support from third parties. Using the “OpenXML” YouTube account, it seems apparent that Microsoft keeps flooding YouTube with OOXML advertisement (viral marketing). We showed this before, but it’s reaching new peaks at the moment. Microsoft is essentially ‘spamming’ the Web in order to brainwash the masses. It even uses the “OOXML” keyword, which it used to protest against.

The Microsoft media puts some spin on this also, yet it’s nothing but vapourware that it speaks of. Hasn’t Microsoft any shame?

“We should dedicate a cross-group team to come up with ways to leverage Windows technically more.”

Jim Allchin, Microsoft

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A Single Comment

  1. Logan said,

    March 8, 2008 at 2:52 am

    Gravatar

    You should see this ad. Is hilarious.

    http://blog.softwarelivre.sapo.pt/wp-content/uploads/2008/03/da_vontade.jpg

    Translation:
    from the top in small letters “Toshiba recommends Windows Vista Business”

    then in bigger letters: “You want to do it, don’t you?”

    This is a real ad. By Toshiba.

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