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. Microsoft's and Bill Gates' Biggest Patent Troll (Intellectual Ventures) Suffers Setback and Nokia is Dead While Patents Scattered to Microsoft Patent Proxies

    Microsoft's patent collectors (trolls) are to have a feast with Nokia patents while Intellectual Ventures, Microsoft's largest patent proxy, continues to attack companies including Motorola



  2. Patent Racketeering Continues With Nadella: Motorola the Latest to Join the FUD Campaign

    Nadella continues Ballmer's campaign of intimidation and alienation, showing that nothing has changed at Microsoft, not even the FUD



  3. Links 23/4/2014: GNOME Maps Application, LG in Headlines

    Links for the day



  4. Links 22/4/2014: More GNU/Linux Gains, Syria Updates

    Links for the day



  5. Links 21/4/2014: New Games for GNU/Linux, Some NatSec Politics

    Links for the day



  6. Site Focus for The Remainder of the Year

    What we plan for the rest of 2014 and why



  7. Links 20/4/2014: EFF FOSS, Easter Drone Strikes, Copyright Industry Fear of Google

    Links for the day



  8. Links 19/4/2014: Slow Easter News Day

    Links for the day



  9. Links 18/4/2014: New KDE, Kubuntu, and More

    Links for the day



  10. Some Perspective on Heartbleed®

    Our views on the whole Heartbleed® bonanza, which seems like partly a PR stunt (for multiple stakeholders)



  11. Microsoft is Leaving Windows -- Including Vista 8.1 -- Vulnerable to Non-Government Crackers, Not Only to NSA

    Microsoft makes it ever more evident that securing users of Windows is not at all a priority, and perhaps not even a desire



  12. Links 17/4/2014: Android RDP, New Ubuntu, RHEL 7 Milestone

    Links for the day



  13. Racing to 1984: Mass Surveillance, Cracking, 'Targeted' Assassinations, and Illegal Torture

    Links for the day



  14. More Microsoft Subsidies to Patent Troll Intellectual Ventures

    Microsoft hands money to Bill Gates' close friend who is the world's largest patent troll



  15. Aiding Microsoft Under the Disguise of 'Pro-FOSS'

    Not everything which is FOSS necessary becomes, by virtue of existence, a positive contribution, as we are constantly reminded by projects that help proprietary software and/or restrictions get a strong grip on FOSS



  16. Links 16/4/2014: Red Hat PR, Ubuntu LTS Imminent

    Links for the day



  17. Links 15/4/2014: Lots of PCLinuxOS Releases, Ukraine Updates

    Links for the day



  18. Apple and Microsoft Actively Lobbying Against Patent Reform in the US

    Apple and Microsoft are reportedly intervening/interfering with US law in order to ensure that the law is Free/libre software-hostile



  19. Lawsuit by Microsoft Shareholder Targets Fine for Crimes Rather Than the Crimes Themselves

    A new lawsuit by a Microsoft shareholder shows everything that's wrong with today's model of accountability, where those who are responsible for crimes are accused of not avoiding fines rather than committing the crimes



  20. Public Institutions Must Dump PRISM-Associated Software

    Another reminder that taxpayers-subsidised services should refuse, as a matter of principle, to pay anything for -- let alone deploy -- proprietary software with back doors



  21. GNU/Linux News: The Opportunities Amid XP EOL

    Links for the day



  22. Microsoft Gets Its Money's Worth From Xamarin: PlayStation 4 Now Polluted by Microsoft

    The Trojan horse of Microsoft, Xamarin, is pushing .NET into Microsoft's console competitor



  23. After Brendan Eich Comes Chris Beard

    Having removed Brendan Eich using bullying and blackmail tactics, his foes inside Mozilla achieved too little as we have yet another man (coming from inside Mozilla) acting as CEO



  24. Healthcare News: Free Software in Health, Humanitarian Causes

    Links for the day



  25. Links 14/4/2014: MakuluLinux, Many Games, More Privacy News and Pulitzer Prize for NSA Revelations

    Links for the day



  26. TechBytes Episode 87: Catching up With Surveillance (NSA, GCHQ et al.)

    The first audio episode in a very long time covers some of the latest happenings when it comes to privacy and, contrariwise, mass surveillance



  27. Server News: KVM, ElasticHosts, Other GNU/Linux Items, and Open Network Linux

    Links for the day



  28. Hardware News: Freedom, Modding, Hackability on the Rise

    Links for the day



  29. Distributions News: GNU/Linux Distros

    Links for the day



  30. GNOME News: Financial Issues, Mutter-Wayland, West Coast Summit, Community Participation

    Links for the day


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