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07.30.09

Further Progress for ODF, But Derailing Still Attempted by the Microsoft Crowd

Posted in Asia, Microsoft, OpenDocument, OpenOffice, Standard at 7:47 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Twin towers

Summary: Listing of some new OpenDocument milestones and warning about those who try to push a stick into wheels of standards

Malaysia’s latest update regarding ODF was highly encouraging and Yoon Kit adds that “ODF will be published on the SIRIM website within 2 months since its approval in June. Priority will be given over others in their backlog.” Over at the OpenDocument Web site, it is noted that another project — called TEA — finally supports ODF.

TEA is a Qt-based editor for Unix and Windows. Version 25 features better support for reading ODF text files (.odt)

The same site also posts a reminder about this year’s OpenOffice.org Conference (OOoCon). For those who do not know:

OOoCon is where representatives of all the community projects meet to celebrate and learn from the achievements of the past twelve months, and discuss how to meet the challenges of the next twelve.

A lot has been achieved recently. OpenOffice.org was downloaded at a pace of 1.3 million copies per week around the beginning of 2007. At the beginning of this year it peaked at about 3 million downloads per week. Surely enough, the deep economic impact may have played a role in this. Microsoft Office is taking the toll [1, 2, 3, 4, 5], just like Windows is suffering from GNU/Linux [1, 2, 3]. It’s about margins, not just market share. Free software and open standards are eroding Microsoft’s profitability, which makes its business model a lot less sustainable.

“Free software and open standards are eroding Microsoft’s profitability, which makes its business model a lot less sustainable.”We have repeatedly warned and offered examples where ODF-hostile people were entering ODF mailing lists. They pretend to be friends of ODF in order to curse it and have credibility at the same time. Microsoft does this all the time while it’s harming ODF [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7] and even Wikipedia became a battleground to the monopolist. The ODF Plugfest had injected to it some ODF hostility, courtesy of Microsoft folks. It is all part of the plan to subvert ODF from the inside; if you can’t beat them, divide them.

This whole trend is something that a person who is close to the standardisation process in Brazil has just warned about (also available in Portuguese).

I get very angry to seeing at Wikipedia a message that stating that “appears to have a conflict of interest with its subject” about the contributions to the article … we are all in favor of ODF ? Or not ?

This is exactly what they want … confuse, deceive, hinder, delay … help to fail! And hope it serves as a lesson and prove (or a warning) to all those who think that everything is solved!

When I was preparing to write this post, I made a complete list with names, email addresses, blogs, sites, and in some cases companies of each of the “workers of the gray area” that I managed to identify. With the help of some confidence friends around the world, also prepared a compilation of information that show the questionable not-so-distant past of those folks.

It is important to be careful of Microsoft’s attempts to approach the ODF crowd; Microsoft is not ODF’s friends. The only reason it implemented something that resembles ODF (and is incompatible with all existing implementations) is to increase sales of Office and act as PR gesture that unjustifiably appeases regulators.

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