EditorsAbout the SiteComes vs. MicrosoftUsing This Web SiteSite ArchivesCredibility IndexOOXMLOpenDocumentPatentsNovellNews DigestSite NewsRSS

12.25.09

ODF Roundup: More Developer Support, But More FUD as Well

Posted in Apple, Free/Libre Software, FUD, KDE, Microsoft, Office Suites, Open XML, OpenDocument, OpenOffice at 10:37 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Adopt standards

Summary: More software adds ODF support; ODF disinformation comes from sources supportive of Microsoft or actually paid directly by Microsoft

OOXML is facing a real struggle for acceptance and Microsoft understands this. OOXML is a proprietary format, but authorities are looking for open standards (preferably not associated with worldwide bribes and other misconduct). As one commenter in Groklaw points out, the United States may indeed go for ODF, just as Obama implicitly promised over a year ago.

What a wonderful Christmas Eve present! After Microsoft destroyed the ISO getting ooxml standardized, the Obama administrations goes and defines an open format as pretty much anything not Microsoft.

TerryC replies with:

Yes. It struck me that way too.

It’ll be interesting to see how MS responds to this. In a fair world, they should fully embrace, (and not extend), ODF. In MS’s world, that would be considered totally unfair, so I’m sure they’ll think of something that looks like they are complying, but are in fact locking out everyone else.

I suspect that OOXML will suddenly become important again.

In today’s post, which is a bit of a medley, we are hoping to show just how ODF continues to gain strong footing. As one person puts it, “Paulo Maia told us that the Brasilia Protocol involves almost 600.000 ODF users.”

The German press gives room to OpenOffice.org 3.2 and Sun’s ODF Plug-in for Microsoft Office. The news from Holland is a little disheartening and in Greece it is being claimed (wrongly) that Microsoft supports the open standard, ODF. Microsoft actually harms it [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7]. Ditesh says, “If only MS was anti-s/ware patent, pro Open Source, Open Standards & ODF – how great they would be now. The mighty are falling hard.”

Earlier this month we wrote about Hungary's move towards open standards, ODF included. eWEEK Europe wrote an article about the subject and also made a reference to Microsoft’s abuse.

In September, open source groups reacted angrily to the news that a Swiss government contract was given to Microsoft without any public bidding. Vendors including Red Hat and other open source players called on a Swiss federal court to overturn a three-year contract issued to Microsoft by the Swiss Federal Bureau for Building and Logistics, to provide Windows desktops and applications, with support and maintenance, for 14 million Swiss Francs (£8m) each year.

As many people may recall, some of the more serious cases of OOXML misconduct occurred in Switzerland. Regarding the lawsuit, we have gathered information under:

  1. Microsoft Sued Over Its Corruption in Switzerland, Microsoft Debt Revisited
  2. Can the United Kingdom and Hungary Still be Sued for Excluding Free Software?
  3. 3 New Counts of Antitrust Violation by Microsoft?
  4. Is Microsoft Breaking the Law in Switzerland Too?
  5. Microsoft Uses Lobbyists to Attack Holland’s Migration to Free Software and Sort of Bribes South African Teachers Who Use Windows
  6. ZDNet/eWeek Ruins Peter Judge’s Good Article by Attacking Red Hat When Microsoft Does the Crime
  7. Week of Microsoft Government Affairs: a Look Back, a Look Ahead
  8. Lawsuit Against Microsoft/Switzerland Succeeds So Far, More Countries/Companies Should Follow Suit
  9. Latest Reports on Microsoft Bulk Deals Being Blocked in Switzerland, New Zealand
  10. Swiss Government and Federal Computer Weekly: Why the Hostility Towards Free Software?
  11. Switzerland and the UK Under Fire for Perpetual Microsoft Engagements
  12. Lawsuit Over Alleged Microsoft Corruption in Switzerland Escalates to Federal Court

Moving on a little, more software projects/products add ODF support and eZ Components is one new example.

With the new stable version 2009.2 of the eZ Components, the Document component get support for the OpenDocument format. You can convert OpenDocumentText (ODT) to the internally used Docbook XML and from there to any of the other formats supported by the component (like RST, Wiki markup or ezxml). The other way around works in addition, read any format supported by Document and convert it to ODT. You can nicely style the generated document using a CSS sub-set and even generate a PDF with the very same style settings.

Officeshots has just added ODF validators.

I am happy to announce an exciting new feature for Officeshots: Integrated ODF validators.

Symbian can now handle ODF files, as well.

Well, Office Reader is the ODF documents reader for Symbian and UIQ3 smartphones which is able to read OpenDocument text (.odt), spreadsheet (.ods) and presentation (.odp) as well as support for OpenOffice.org Hybrid PDF file.

Another new tool:

On “The hacker´s forge” you can make your odf files anonymous. Upload your files and you can immediately downlaod the results. And these results are excellent. Text is replaced by random characters, pictures are substituted by dummy graphic files, meta information is erased.

Bart Hanssens points to this original message that says: “Adam Pigg has harmonized A LOT of report xml elements with #ODF concepts: http://bit.ly/6uD7dy

It looks like KOffice too it making great progress with ODF.

A possibly older project is the ODF viewer for Firefox, which many people promote at the moment (Google too plays a role in people’s conversations).

This website is a platform for introducing the ODF Viewer for Firefox 3.+ extension.

The OpenDocument Format (ODF) is an XML-based open international standard format for displaying, storing, and editing office document files (i.e. text, spreadsheets, presentations) that has been approved on May 2006 as ISO/IEC 26300. It is defined via an open and transparent process at OASIS (Organization for the Advancement of Structured Information Standards).

Great stuff.

One company that lags behind when it comes to ODF support would be Microsoft's friend, Apple. Their clients seem to be complaining (also here) by saying: “Apple should start supporting ODF in their iWork suite, competitive advantage over MS Office for Mac.”

According to Microsoft’s deal with the European Commission, it is committed to “implement ODF 1.1.., and include it in the “save as” drop down box”

“Even possible as default format,” says OpenForum Europe.

Well, if only Microsoft properly supported ODF. People would still be better off with the ODF Plug-in from Sun. Microsoft is inherently against ODF because its unethical management says so. This is a company that has always been shamelessly ferocious and brutal.

Dave Lane says: “I’m guessing the answer is NO (replying to my own question re MS Office 2010 using strict OOXML as default format). And default ODF support?”

Friends and supporters of Microsoft cite Durusau again, quoting him as saying that “Microsoft has been a valuable and contributing member of the ODF TC”. But Durusau is no credible source for this [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8]. And as we have shown many times before, Microsoft has been attacking ODF for several months now, all while pretending to be its friend. James Bryce Clark wrote: “Meeting with the #ODF tc about future version plans #OASISopen #jtc1″

With the latest i4i verdict arrive/return some of the same old rumours that are false and serve as a reminder that Microsoft cheated the world by keeping this case secret [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10]. Jason Brooks, Ashutosh Mestry and few others (e.g. [1, 2]) raise concerns about custom XML, which is not a problem for ODF, contrary to their belief. In fact, i4i said so months ago after unnecessary fear mongering from the Microsoft-serving Gartner Group and Burton Group (they have always been anti-ODF as Microsoft paid them for it).

“If you want real security dont use a proprietary file format either. use ASCII or an ODF.”
      –Nicholas Butler
Here is Groklaw’s interpretation of the latest from i4i. Reactions from Twitter sometimes include promotion of ODF. For example:

#microsoft fail, must stop selling Office suite http://tr.im/Imai HAHA, they should have just gone with ODF from the beginning

And also:

“Microsoft had no commercially acceptable, non-infringing alternatives to using i4i’s patent” – should’ve used #ODF ! http://tr.im/IpLH

Nicholas Butler wrote: “If you want real security dont use a proprietary file format either. use ASCII or an ODF.”

Peter Krantz shared this unpleasant experience: “Received note from [government] offices IT dept that “you will be able to preview ODF docs when we upgrade Notes”. I want to write them. #fail”

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

What Else is New


  1. Links 25/4/2015: Debian LTS Plans, Turing Phone Runs Linux

    Links for the day



  2. Who Kills Yahoo? It's Microsoft, Not Yahoo!

    The media should blame Microsoft, not Marissa Mayer, for what's going on (and has been going on for 7 years) at Yahoo!



  3. EPO Management is Trying Hard to Appease Its Critics While Pushing Forth Unitary Patent Agenda

    The European Patent Office and European Commission promote the agenda of large multinational corporations (at the expense or European citizens) and critics are being kept at bay



  4. Real Patent Reform Will Not Come From Biggest Backers of GNU/Linux, Not Even Google

    A look at the 'new' Google, the company which is hoarding patents (2,566 last year alone) instead of fighting for reform



  5. Microsoft's Troll Intellectual Ventures Loses Software Patents

    Intellectual Ventures is bluffing with software patents, but this time around it doesn't get its way



  6. Links 24/4/2015: Ubuntu and Variants in the News, Red Hat Developer Toolset 3.1

    Links for the day



  7. Links 23/4/2015: Ubuntu 15.04 is Out, Debian 8.0 Out Very Soon

    Links for the day



  8. Links 22/4/2015: Fedora 22 Beta, Atlassian Acquires BlueJimp

    Links for the day



  9. The Dying Debate Over Patent Scope (Including Software Patents) Replaced by 'Trolls' (But Not the Biggest Ones)

    The corporate media and Web sites or people who are funded by large corporations have essentially suppressed any debate about issues in the patent granting process, thereby guarding software patents and preventing criticism of large corporations' power grab



  10. The Patents Gold Rush Continues

    The morbid obsession with monopolising mere ideas still dominates the media, even increasingly in China



  11. 9 Millionth US Patent Tells a Story of Failure and USPTO Misconduct

    The USPTO, much like FISA (notorious court for surveillance/espionage authorisation), has become a rubber-stamping operation rather than a patents examination centre, as new evidence and old evidence serve to show



  12. HBO Helps Shift Debate Over Patents to 'Trolls' (Scale), Not Scope

    More of that awkward shifting of the patent debate towards small actors who are misusing patents, not large conglomerates like Apple and Microsoft which use patents to destroy competitors, crush startups, drive up prices, and so on



  13. Software Patents Are Still Menacing to Free Software: OIN Expands Scope, HEVC Adds to MPEG-LA Burden/Tax, Google and Facebook Give in on Patents

    A look at recent news about software patents and especially Free/libre software, which is inherently incompatible with them



  14. The Latest Developments Around Microsoft's Clever Attack on Android/Linux

    Microsoft's campaign of destruction, extortion, etc. against the most widely used Linux-powered operating system is revisited in light of new reports



  15. The Microsoft 'Community' is Maligning the Free Software Community

    Dishonest generalisations and baseless deductions portray the Free/Open Source software communities as a nasty place that leads to poverty and despair



  16. Googlebombing 'Microsoft Open Source' Even When Microsoft Shuts Down Its 'Open Source' Proxy

    A massive failure by the press to cover the most basic news, which is Microsoft putting an end to a supposedly 'Open Source' effort



  17. Links 22/4/2015: Calculate Linux 14.16, SparkyLinux 4.0 RC KDE

    Links for the day



  18. Links 21/4/2015: Project Photon, Ubuntu Touch Buzz

    Links for the day



  19. Embrace, Extend, Extinguish: How Microsoft Plans to Get Rid of Linux/Android

    Microsoft's sheer abuse against Android is laying bare for everyone to see now that Microsoft has paralysed Google's legal department with potential antitrust action in Europe



  20. Yahoo's Current CEO (Mayer, Formerly of Google) is Trying to End Yahoo! Status as Microsoft Proxy

    There are signs of relinquishing Microsoft's control over Yahoo! after Marissa Mayer worked to end the company's suicidal/abusive relationship with Steve Ballmer's Microsoft



  21. Repeating Microsoft's Lies Without Any Journalistic Assessment

    Poor fact-checking by relatively large media/news sites results in Microsoft's patently false claims being repeated uncritically



  22. Links 19/4/2015: New KaOS (2015.04), Manjaro Linux 0.8.13 Pre1

    Links for the day



  23. Links 18/4/2015: ExTiX 15.2, RaspArch

    Links for the day



  24. Microsoft Tired of Pretending to be Nice to Free/Open Source Software (FOSS), Microsoft 'Open' Technologies Dumped

    Microsoft dumps its proxy (misleadingly named 'Open Tech') and other attacks on Free software persist from the inside, often through so-called 'experts' whose agenda is to sell proprietary software



  25. More Translations of French Article About the EPO

    German and Dutch translations of the Le Monde article are now available



  26. Links 17/4/2015: Wipro and the Netherlands Want FOSS

    Links for the day



  27. Microsoft's Multi-Dimensional Assault on Android/Linux: Extortion, Lobbying of Regulators, and Bribes

    Microsoft's vicious war on Linux (and Android in its current incarnation) takes more sophisticated -- albeit illegal (as per the RICO Act) -- forms



  28. Microsoft's Plot to Associate Windows with 'Open Source' is Proving Effective, Despite Being Just a Big Lie

    A look at the latest headlines which can lead to a false perception that Microsoft is now in bed with 'Open Source'



  29. Microsoft Windows Remotely Crashed, Remotely Hijacked, But Still No Logo and No Branding for the Bugs

    Windows maintains its reputation as a back doors haven, but the media is still not highlighting the severity of this issue, instead focusing on accidental bugs in Free software, even very old (and already fixed) bugs



  30. Black Duck's Latest Self-Promotional Propaganda (for Proprietary Software) Still Fools Journalists

    Under the traditionally misleading title "Future of Open Source" Black Duck expresses its desire for proprietary software sales, salivating over fearful managers who may get bamboozled into buying the patents-'protected' Black Duck 'product'


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