03.20.08

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Who Voted “Yes” for OOXML in India Anyway?

Posted in Asia, Microsoft, Open XML at 10:37 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

…Only Microsoft and Its Ilk?

“We’ve got to put a lot of money into changing behavior.”

Bill Gates

A short while ago an article appeared which stated that academic and non-private bodies in India had all voted “No” to OOXML. We covered the story yesterday.

A bit of digging in the news quickly discovered just what sort of companies actually voted “Yes” to Microsoft’s OOXML.

Take Infosys for example. Infosys voted “Yes” to OOXML. Let’s look at the news just two weeks ago, shall we?

Microsoft, Infosys ‘incubating talent’ to beat attrition blues

Faced with the challenge of finding workers with specialist skills and high levels of attrition, technology firms such as Microsoft Corp.’s India unit and local software company Infosys Technologies Ltd have started what they call efforts at “incubating talent” on an experimental basis.

Is Infosys an impartial voter then. Or one with vested interests?

Let’s move on to another “Yes” vote. Consider Wipro. Just 3 days ago, Wipro published the following press release:

Wipro’s study reveals how migration to Microsoft® SQL Server® Pays Big Dividends for SAP/ERP Customers

Wipro Technologies, the global IT services business of Wipro Limited (NYSE:WIT), today announced the results of their study, commissioned by Microsoft Corp., concluding that migrating an SAP ERP system to Microsoft® SQL Server can yield net benefits of $850K for a medium-size organization and $10 million for a large organization, all in a payback period of 9 to 15 months.

Once again, can a company which is paid by Microsoft to conduct ‘studies’ be trusted to objectively decide on international standards, especially where Microsoft’s own proprietary ‘standard’ is involved?

“To sum up, not a single “Yes” voter was not in Microsoft’s pocket.”It’s akin to CompTIA’s ‘studies’ and recent praises of Internet Explorer and Bill Gates. We last mentioned CompTIA just days ago, pointing out the ECMA-CompTIA-Microsoft relationship. They too are helping Microsoft with OOXML. Remember Frost and Sullivan? It all goes back to the issues around corrupted research.

In India, another “Yes” voter was NASSCOM, which we seem to have caught in the middle of a huge scandal (Microsoft ‘charity’). Be sure to read about it if you haven’t.

Another “Yes” vote came from TCS. Go ahead and find the many relationships. To sum up, not a single “Yes” voter was not in Microsoft’s pocket.

Is this voting? Microsoft virtually had 5 seats. It holds them by the money, the mutual favours, the incentives, the personal relationships. Shouldn’t an impartial panel be deciding on OOXML, based on the technical quality of the candidate alone? Remember that Microsoft essentially pays Novell to play nice with OOXML.

Novell gets 'bribed'

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12 Comments

  1. CoolGuy said,

    March 20, 2008 at 10:53 pm

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    I am from India. Let me tell you that Infosys a M$ outfit. They get huge bilion dollars worth of projects from M$ and most of their products run on m$ patforms. Same is with other companies who voted yes.

    They are going to tank with M$.

    They hire programmers at throw away price in local market, make them work overtime and night and save billions in outsourcing and earn in dollars. It has literally destroyed the IT of India – most of them are call center or support center jobs.

  2. James McDougal said,

    March 21, 2008 at 1:28 am

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    When it comes to OpenXML there is no such thing as an “impartial panel” which ever way you cut it.

    If you wanted a panel that was representative of the software industry in any given country, which is probably a far smarter way to judge the needs of that industry and the equitable benefits to a country, then you should probably look at market share and needs then divide your committee seats up that way.

    As far as I am aware this has not happened in any country, the commitees generally seem to be made up of those who shouted the loudest when the seats were being filled.

    When I look at the Indian vote specifically, even the “Open Source India” folks say that the only people voting for OpenXML were the exporters of software. [1] i.e. those companies looking for opportunities to generate revenue for the Indian software economy, rather than a bunch of ideologists who would be unlikely to use the specification regardless of it becomes a standard or not.

    1. http://osindia.blogspot.com/2008/03/india-votes-no-for-ooxml.html

  3. Roy Schestowitz said,

    March 21, 2008 at 1:34 am

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    If you wanted a panel that was representative of the software industry in any given country, which is probably a far smarter way to judge the needs of that industry and the equitable benefits to a country, then you should probably look at market share and needs then divide your committee seats up that way.

    A panel must judge a standard based on its quality, not based on economics, so I tend to disagree on this one.

  4. LinuxIfFun said,

    March 21, 2008 at 2:54 am

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    “When I look at the Indian vote specifically, even the “Open Source India” folks say that the only people voting for OpenXML were the exporters of software. [1] i.e. those companies looking for opportunities to generate revenue for the Indian software economy, rather than a bunch of ideologists who would be unlikely to use the specification regardless of it becomes a standard or not.”

    Unlikely to use the specification ?? As far as I can tell majority of PC users are using a office suite…

    To be more corrected…Exporters of microsoft software…

    Why would M$ want to put it through ISO ? They can live happily without that…But ramping up a proprietor software by money and all sort of cheap techniques to get a ISO rubber stamp just shows how cheap they have become. It broken beyond repair that they themself cant even implement it…just makes me sick.

    World does not need a costly, broken ISO standard.

  5. James McDougal said,

    March 21, 2008 at 2:55 am

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    You twist my words… the suggestion was that the evaluating group should always be representitive of the countries constituent software industry.

  6. LinuxIfFun said,

    March 21, 2008 at 3:00 am

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    “those companies looking for opportunities to generate revenue for the Indian software economy”

    There are lots of opportunity for open source software. Closed source is ethically wrong, anti-consumer – dont support it. Its like holding your users at ransom. Whether its from M$ or anyone else.

    Would you buy your car with the hood wielded shut ?

    Binary puke = closed source.

    Every user has the right to receive the source code of the application he/she has bought and has every right to make changes to it as per their needs.

  7. LinuxIfFun said,

    March 21, 2008 at 3:15 am

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    “You twist my words… the suggestion was that the evaluating group should always be representitive of the countries constituent software industry.”

    So that they can twist the laws to serve them rather than the country. The voted “yes” because it serves only them and not the future of the country.

  8. Roy Schestowitz said,

    March 21, 2008 at 3:14 am

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    While I tend not to get ‘religious’ over this issue, your comment brought to mind the following old quote:

    “Since when has the world of computer software design been about what people want? This is a simple question of evolution. The day is quickly coming when every knee will bow down to a silicon fist, and you will all beg your binary gods for mercy.”

    — Bill Gates

  9. Roy Schestowitz said,

    March 21, 2008 at 3:16 am

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    By “twist my words” I’m not sure whose comment he was referring to. I thought it was mine.

  10. LinuxIfFun said,

    March 21, 2008 at 3:20 am

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    OOXML is anti consumer. It promotes the welfare of the few. It is poison pill (filled with patents, broken, costly, etc)

    No way any sane person can be doing any right by passing it off as a ISO standard.

    Either they dont care, don’t know, haven’t read the specification, paid to vote yes or just acting in self interest.

    Its sad to see the IT companies of India voting “YES” on it. They have lost all self respect all over India. They exist to serve only themself.

  11. Roy Schestowitz said,

    March 21, 2008 at 3:30 am

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    The OSI has just made a good post which concludes with:

    Any standards body that approves OOXML needs to blush. Any company which submits OOXML as a standard needs to blush.

  12. Ed said,

    March 21, 2008 at 7:22 pm

    Gravatar

    “If you wanted a panel that was representative of the software industry in any given country, which is probably a far smarter way to judge the needs of that industry and the equitable benefits to a country, then you should probably look at market share and needs then divide your committee seats up that way.”

    Do you mean the market share based on dollars (Microsoft’s prices vs $0 for free software) ? Do you mean today’s Microsoft-dominated IT market share or the market share that would exist if India had it’s own IT infrastructure based on open-source (requires elimination of Microsoft dominance as a pre-requisite) ? Do you measure market share in server operating systems *SOLD* (see comment above about open-source pricing and provide a way to count the number of servers loaded with downloaded software or those loaded with media already installed on another box) ? Do you mean market share of *Desktop* operating systems or market share of *Server* operating systems (refer to previous questions about measuring market share) ?

    I suggest that perhaps seats on the committee should be apportioned to whoever wishes to work on that committee, provided that they spend at least one year on the committee actively participating in every activity of that committee prior to being allowed to vote and provided that their voting track record during their one-year probation indicates a complete independence of thought and analysis and provided that they recuse themselves whenever a vote is taken on a standard proposed by someone they have a strong business relationship with.

    This would leave unbiased personnel on the panels and quality of standards would increase significantly.

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