04.19.08

Gemini version available ♊︎

Why Schools Must Embrace ODF and FOSS; Healthy Boost for KOffice and OpenDocument Format

Posted in Deception, Europe, Formats, Free/Libre Software, GNU/Linux, Google, GPL, KDE, Microsoft, Novell, Office Suites, Open XML, OpenDocument, OpenOffice, Patents, Standard, SUN at 2:10 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

KOffice Logo

ODF on Tap

The growth of Free software cannot truly be measured. This is a marketing problem that we highlighted in the past, the focus being GNU/Linux. To shed some light on the growth of OpenOffice.org in Europe, consider the following new post. [via Glyn Moody]

If we look at OpenOffice.org, the three markets where the open source office suite is competing most successfully with Microsoft Office are probably Germany, France and Italy, followed by other European markets like Spain and the Netherlands. In Italy, where I have the updated numbers, we are hitting today – maybe while I’m writing this post – one million downloads since January 1st, 2008 (over 350.000 since the announcement of OOo 2.4 in late March). Although we don’t have Microsoft figures for Office 2007, we estimate a maximum of 1.8 million licenses sold in 2008.

I already know the reply: “You can’t compare licenses with downloads…”. Of course, gentlemen, but do you really think that one million downloads in slightly over one hundred days (at an average of over 9,200 downloads per day) still equals to a few thousands users? Do you really think that a small bunch of people, just the same small bunch of people, can get all these downloads? Come on, we’ve other stuff to do. Please, be realistic. We’re eating your pie, quickly. We’re hungry.

Microsoft’s Plan B: Subscription, Ads, Child Lock-in

At the moment, Microsoft tries to bring an experimental project from developing countries over to the west. It will be offering a subscription-based Microsoft Office (on top of an ad-funded Microsoft Works) under the codename “Albany”. It’s a case of catching up with Google’s business model and a case of offering what you already get with OpenOffice.org or KOffice, but with more security headaches and a monthly/annual bill you cannot avoid.

“Microsoft is permitted to shape the minds of our kids, essentially pre-recruiting (training) them as a workforce, all at the expense of foreign taxpayers.”A few hours ago we shared the story about the United Kingdom’s public sector made a hostage of Microsoft. Some other countries will tell a similar story, but it’s particularly painful for someone who lives here to see the UK choosing to lock itself in for Microsoft to control completely, at least in a digital sense.

Ian Lynch from the OSA (UK) identifies a similar set of problems and an entire article has just been published to highlight the severity of this matter which affects children, i.e. tomorrow’s adult generation.

Microsoft is permitted to shape the minds of our kids, essentially pre-recruiting (training) them as a workforce, all at the expense of foreign taxpayers. In additional to the mental lock-in (as in skills, familiarity with particular users interfaces), there are also technical lock-ins such as OOXML. [via Glyn Moody, who says a lot more]

When Will They Ever Learn?

[...]

Schools are being prevented from enjoying a revolution in software provision, and self-sufficiency is being halted by the promotion of dependency, said Ian Lynch, spokesman for the Open Schools Alliance.

“Innovation starts with teachers and pupils, but under BSF the school’s IT strategy is taken out of its hands,” he said.

But hey! Maybe some schools will even ignore BECTA's recommendations, install Office 2007, and then find out that kids cannot open OOXML-encoded homework at home, so they need not only to buy Office 2007 (OpenOffice.org and other office suites won’t do OOXML) but also a brand-new high-end PC to run the buggy resource pig (Windows XP no longer available after June).

That’s just why (and how) schools can be used as a tool that forces families to shell out $1500 for Intel and Microsoft to enjoy. 1 gigabyte of RAM won’t cut it and only Office 2007 is compatible with Office 2007, which uses its own secret variant of OOXML (Office 2009 ‘extends’ this further — all undocumented — in order to facilitate forced upgrades, a network effect-driven upgrade trademill [sic]).

Another ODF Victory

There is some good news too. There is a better way. There is ODF and there is a wealth of applications that support it.

GNOME CalcYou might still recall NLnet for requesting that Microsoft relinquished control of its legacy binary formats, which are still seen largely as a trap to be replaced for marketing purposes. Their work was later cited to express WTO-tied concerns over the legitimacy of OOXML. NLnet is based on Holland, which is among the countries fastest to adopt OpenDocument format, despite Microsoft's sheer aggression there.

We ask you to recall the interoperability collaboration between OpenOffice.org developers and KOffice developers, as well as the myth that ODF is OpenOffice.org and the myth that ODF cannot work (there is plenty of new disinformation at the moment). Some of these myths get busted by the latest news from KDE, which ODF advocates are urged to read. KOffice presses on with ODF and it also receives important backing.

The Dutch NLnet foundation aims to financially support organisations and people that contribute to an open information society. Some time ago they decided to help KOffice in two exciting ways: to sponsor the design of a new logo for KOffice, with matching logo designs for all KOffice applications, and to sponsor Girish Ramakrishnan to improve the ODF support in KWord 2.0. The KOffice team is deeply grateful to NLnet for this support!

KDE developers should be kindly reminded again to stay away from the (L)GPL-allergic OOXML. The only FOSS projects that touch this poison are developed by current or former Novell employees and Novell was paid by Microsoft to support OOXML and receive exclusive ‘protection’ for a limited number of years.

Share in other sites/networks: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Reddit
  • email

Decor ᶃ Gemini Space

Below is a Web proxy. We recommend getting a Gemini client/browser.

Black/white/grey bullet button This post is also available in Gemini over at this address (requires a Gemini client/browser to open).

Decor ✐ Cross-references

Black/white/grey bullet button Pages that cross-reference this one, if any exist, are listed below or will be listed below over time.

Decor ▢ Respond and Discuss

Black/white/grey bullet button If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

DecorWhat Else is New


  1. Links 30/01/2023: Coreboot 4.19 and Budgie 10.7

    Links for the day



  2. IRC Proceedings: Sunday, January 29, 2023

    IRC logs for Sunday, January 29, 2023



  3. [Meme] With Superheroes Like These...

    Ever since the new managers arrived the talent has fled the company that falsely credits itself with "Open Source"



  4. Not Tolerating Proprietary 'Bossware' in the Workplace (or at Home in Case of Work-From-Home)

    The company known as Sirius ‘Open Source’ generally rejected… Open Source. Today’s focus was the migration to Slack.



  5. The ISO Delusion: A Stack of Proprietary Junk (Slack) Failing Miserably

    When the company where I worked for nearly 12 years spoke of pragmatism it was merely making excuses to adopt proprietary software at the expense of already-working and functional Free software



  6. Debian 11 on My Main Rig: So Far Mostly OK, But Missing Some Software From Debian 10

    Distributions of GNU/Linux keep urging us to move to the latest, but is the latest always the greatest? On Friday my Debian 10 drive died, so I started moving to Debian 11 on a new drive and here's what that did to my life.



  7. Stigmatising GNU/Linux for Not Withstanding Hardware Failures

    Nowadays "the news" is polluted with a lot of GNU/Linux-hostile nonsense; like with patents, the signal-to-noise ratio is appalling and here we deal with a poor 'report' about "Linux servers" failing to work



  8. Microsofters Inside Sirius 'Open Source'

    Sirius ‘Open Source’ has been employing incompetent managers for years — a sentiment shared among colleagues by the way; today we examine some glaring examples with redacted communications to prove it



  9. Links 29/01/2023: GNOME 43.3 Fixes and Lots About Games

    Links for the day



  10. The Hey Hype Machine

    "Hey Hype" or "Hey Hi" (AI) has been dominating the press lately and a lot of that seems to boil down to paid-for marketing; we need to understand what's truly going on and not be distracted by the substance-less hype



  11. IRC Proceedings: Saturday, January 28, 2023

    IRC logs for Saturday, January 28, 2023



  12. Unmasking AI

    A guest article by Andy Farnell



  13. The ISO Delusion/Sirius Corporation: A 'Tech' Company Run by Non-Technical People

    Sirius ‘Open Source’ was hiring people who brought to the company a culture of redundant tasks and unwanted, even hostile technology; today we continue to tell the story of a company run by the CEO whose friends and acquaintances did severe damage



  14. Links 28/01/2023: Lots of Catching Up (Had Hardware Crash)

    Links for the day



  15. IRC Proceedings: Friday, January 27, 2023

    IRC logs for Friday, January 27, 2023



  16. Microsoft DuckDuckGo Falls to Lowest Share in 2 Years After Being Widely Exposed as Microsoft Proxy, Fake 'Privacy'

    DuckDuckGo, according to this latest data from Statcounter, fell from about 0.71% to just 0.58%; all the gains have been lost amid scandals, such as widespread realisation that DuckDuckGo is a Microsoft informant, curated by Microsoft and hosted by Microsoft (Bing is meanwhile laying off many people, but the media isn’t covering that or barely bothers)



  17. This is What the Microsoft-Sponsored Media Has Been Hyping Up for Weeks (Ahead of Microsoft Layoffs)

    Reprinted with permission from Ryan



  18. [Meme] António Campinos Wants to Be F***ing President Until 2028

    António Campinos insists he will be EPO President for 10 years, i.e. even longer than Benoît Battistelli (despite having appalling approval rates from staff)



  19. European Patent Office Staff Losing Hope

    The EPO’s management with its shallow campaign of obfuscation (pretending to protect children or some other nonsense) is not fooling patent examiners, who have grown tired and whose representatives say “the administration shows no intention of involving the staff representation in the drafting of the consultant’s mandate” (like in Sirius ‘Open Source’ where technical staff is ignored completely for misguided proposals to pass in the dark)



  20. IRC Proceedings: Thursday, January 26, 2023

    IRC logs for Thursday, January 26, 2023



  21. Sirius Relegated/Demoted/Destined Itself to Technical Hell by Refusing to Listen to the Technical Staff (Which Wanted to Stay With Asterisk/Free Software)

    In my final year at Sirius ‘Open Source’ communication systems had already become chaotic; there were too many dysfunctional tools, a lack of instructions, a lack of coordination and the proposed ‘solution’ (this past October) was just more complexity and red tape



  22. Geminispace Approaching Another Growth Milestone (2,300 Active Capsules)

    The expansion of Geminispace is worth noting again because another milestone is approached, flirted with, or will be surpassed this coming weekend



  23. [Meme] Cannot Get a Phone to Work... in 2022

    Sirius ‘Open Source’ wasted hours of workers’ time just testing the phone after it had moved to a defective system of Google (proprietary); instead of a rollback (back to Asterisk) the company doubled down on the faulty system and the phones still didn’t work properly, resulting in missing calls and angst (the company just blamed the workers who all along rejected this new system)



  24. [Meme] Modern Phones

    Sirius ‘Open Source’ is mistaking “modern” for better; insecurity and a lack of tech savvy typically leads to that



  25. The ISO Delusion: Sirius Corporation Demonstrates a Lack of Understanding of Security and Privacy

    Sirius ‘Open Source’, emboldened by ISO ‘paperwork’ (certification), lost sight of what it truly takes to run a business securely, mistaking worthless gadgets for “advancement” while compelling staff to sign a new contract in a hurry (prior contract-signing scandals notwithstanding)



  26. Links 26/01/2023: LibreOffice 7.4.5 and Ubuntu Pro Offers

    Links for the day



  27. Links 26/01/2023: GNU poke 3.0 and PipeWire 0.3.65

    Links for the day



  28. IRC Proceedings: Wednesday, January 25, 2023

    IRC logs for Wednesday, January 25, 2023



  29. Companies Would Collapse Upon Abandoning Their Original Goals (That Attracted All the Productive Staff)

    Staff with technical skills won't stick around in companies that reject technical arguments and moreover move to proprietary software in a company that brands itself "Open Source"



  30. [Meme] Listen to Your Workers, Avert Disaster

    Companies that refuse to take input from staff are doomed to fail


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