10.09.07

Gemini version available ♊︎

Why Would Novell Want to Fork OOO?

Posted in Fork, Formats, Free/Libre Software, Intellectual Monopoly, Interoperability, LGPL, Microsoft, Novell, Office Suites, Open XML, OpenDocument, OpenOffice at 11:51 am by Shane Coyle

Regular readers of this site, the ones that remember way back when I had time to contribute more, may recall the hub-bub regarding Novell possibly forking OpenOffice.org shortly after their infamous deal with our friends from Redmond – something that was heatedly debated in the community.

Well, now let’s look at the present times – all over the web, reports abound about the Novell-Sun rift and Michael Meeks forking of OpenOffice.org. Some say it is a fork, some say it is not, and this all sounds very familiar but a little confusing – again.

Charles H. Schulz has written a piece that was published on Groklaw which attempts to shed some light on the background of the dispute, and offers some conjecture on what Meeks’ motivation may be:

Bear with me now: The OpenOffice.org project is developing import filters for OpenXML, but not export filters. Why? Because, I believe, it does not want to make a service to Microsoft by being the second major office suite to produce OpenXML documents on the fly. Novell sees this issue from a different point of view, but let’s not get carried away. Working with Microsoft on interoperability, as Novell claims, includes working on OpenXML filters and plugins. While Novell contributes quite normally to OpenOffice.org’s import filters, it is also developing an OpenXML export filter that won’t be available in OpenOffice.org– that is, if you choose to use OpenOffice.org and not “Open Office, Novell Edition”. And since these export filters are supposedly developed in collaboration with Microsoft, this technology would logically include Microsoft’s sacred intellectual property that Sun and many others don’t want to see covered by the JCA. This could, perhaps, explain Michael’s odd questions on this list of OpenOffice.org

So these new builds from Novell would thus include new features, but features that will carry sometimes an unverified intellectual property. And that’s certainly an issue if Microsoft joins the game. Would that mean Michael’s move was made in order to serve some corporate interests?

So, it looks like Novell is indeed intent on making available a fully OOXML-compatible, yet likely IP-encumbered, version of Novell OpenOffice.org – features that will not or cannot be sent back upstream. Of course, they cannot rightfully be expected to pay Microsoft their per-unit royalty on all copies of OOO that is distributed, as their thirty pieces of silver just doesn’t stretch that far, so fork they must.

Hey, who knows, perhaps over in that joint-interoperability lab of theirs, Microvell is also working on full native ODF support for Microsoft Office. (I’m still pulling for you to be right, Stafford, and sometimes I wish I was more often wrong.)

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.

2 Comments

  1. David said,

    October 10, 2007 at 12:01 pm

    Gravatar

    Here is Michael Meeks’ response to this which he posted yesterday which you didn’t link to (perhaps you haven’t read it?):

    http://www.gnome.org/~michael/activity.html#2007-10-09

    “Categorically, as of now, this is false; we’re not actively working on native export filters to match the import filter. ”

    I’m confused about this this, as I’ve tried the Novell edition of OO.o, and you can save documents as .docx.

  2. Shane Coyle said,

    October 10, 2007 at 1:30 pm

    Gravatar

    Hadn’t seen it yesterday, but there are alot of qualifying words peppered throughout all of Meeks’ statements – ‘as of now’, ‘actively’, and even ‘native’ and ‘to match’. Top that off with this (emphasis mine):

    In other words, Meeks’ comments seem less a declaration of independence than a renewal of longstanding internal disputes within the OpenOffice.org community. Asked by Linux.com whether recent events constituted a fork, Meeks replied firmly, “Novell is not forking OpenOffice. It’s that simply. We’re working closely with OpenOffice; I spent most of the day working on code that will go into the general OpenOffice. If it’s a fork, then we’re working on both sides of the fork. The punchline is that we’re still heavily invested in OpenOffice, we’re still working with Sun, and there’s still projects on which we’re working jointly with Sun.”

    So, we’re not forking, unless of course we are. Where is Novell’s official statement?

DecorWhat Else is New


  1. IRC Proceedings: Monday, October 25, 2021

    IRC logs for Monday, October 25, 2021



  2. [Meme] “Social Democracy” at the EPO

    Some comments on the current situation at the European Patent Office from Goran Gerasimovski, the new EPO Administrative Council delegate for North Macedonia and Social Democratic candidate for mayor of Centar (a municipality of Skopje)



  3. [Meme] António Campinos Visits the OSIM

    António Campinos visits OSIM Director-General Ionel Muscalu in February 2014



  4. [Meme] [Teaser] Meet the President

    Later today we shall see what Romania did for Battistelli



  5. Links 26/10/2021: Latte Dock 0.10.3 and Linux 5.15 RC7

    Links for the day



  6. Gemini Protocol's Originator: “I Continue to Care About This Project and I Care About the Community That Has Formed Around It.”

    'Solderpunk' is back from a long hiatus; this bodes well for Geminispace, which grew fast in spite of the conspicuous absence



  7. Bulgarian Like Bavarian Serfdom

    Bulgarian politics seem to have played a big role in selecting chiefs and delegates who backed Benoît Battistelli‘s unlawful proposals, which treat workers almost like slaves and ordinary citizens as disposable ‘collaterals’



  8. The EPO’s Overseer/Overseen Collusion — Part XXIII: The Balkan League - Bulgaria

    Today we examine the role of Bulgaria in Benoît Battistelli‘s liberticidal regime at the EPO (as well as under António Campinos, from 2018 to present) with particular focus on political machinations



  9. Links 25/10/2021: New Slackware64-current and a Look at Ubuntu Budgie

    Links for the day



  10. Links 25/10/2021: pg_statement_rollback 1.3 and Lots of Patent Catchup

    Links for the day



  11. Microsoft GitHub Exposé — Part III — A Story of Plagiarism and Likely Securities Fraud

    Today we tread slowly and take another step ahead, revealing the nature of only some among many problems that GitHub and Microsoft are hiding from the general public (to the point of spiking media reports)



  12. [Meme] [Teaser] Oligarchs-Controlled Patent Offices With Media Connections That Cover Up Corruption

    As we shall see later today, the ‘underworld’ in Bulgaria played a role or pulled the strings of politically-appointed administrators who guarded Benoît Battistelli‘s liberticidal regime at the EPO



  13. IRC Proceedings: Sunday, October 24, 2021

    IRC logs for Sunday, October 24, 2021



  14. Links 25/10/2021: EasyOS 3.1 and Bareflank 3.0

    Links for the day



  15. The Demolition of the EPO Was Made Possible With Assistance From Countries That Barely Have European Patents

    The legal basis of today's EPO has been crushed; a lot of this was made possible by countries with barely any stakes in the outcome



  16. The EPO’s Overseer/Overseen Collusion — Part XXII: The Balkan League - North Macedonia and Albania

    We continue to look at Benoît Battistelli‘s enablers at the EPO



  17. Links 24/10/2021: GPS Daemon (GPSD) Bug and Lots of Openwashing

    Links for the day



  18. Links 24/10/2021: XWayland 21.1.3 and Ubuntu Linux 22.04 LTS Daily Build

    Links for the day



  19. IRC Proceedings: Saturday, October 23, 2021

    IRC logs for Saturday, October 23, 2021



  20. Links 24/10/2021: Ceph Boss Sage Weil Resigns and Many GPL Enforcement Stories

    Links for the day



  21. GAFAM-Funded NPR Reports That Facebook Let Millions of People Like Trump Flout the So-called Rules. Not Just “a Few”.

    Guest post by Ryan, reprinted with permission



  22. Some Memes About What Croatia Means to the European Patent Office

    Before we proceed to other countries in the region, let’s not forget or let’s immortalise the role played by Croatia in the EPO (memes are memorable)



  23. Gangster Culture in the EPO

    The EPO‘s Administrative Council was gamed by a gangster from Croatia; today we start the segment of the series which deals with the Balkan region



  24. The EPO’s Overseer/Overseen Collusion — Part XXI: The Balkan League – The Doyen and His “Protégée”

    The EPO‘s circle of corruption in the Balkan region will be the focus of today’s (and upcoming) coverage, showing some of the controversial enablers of Benoît Battistelli and António Campinos, two deeply corrupt French officials who rapidly drive the Office into the ground for personal gain (at Europe’s expense!)



  25. Links 23/10/2021: FreeBSD 12.3 Beta, Wine 6.20, and NuTyX 21.10.0

    Links for the day



  26. IRC Proceedings: Friday, October 22, 2021

    IRC logs for Friday, October 22, 2021



  27. [Meme] [Teaser] Crime Express

    The series about Battistelli's "Strike Regulations" (20 parts thus far) culminates as the next station is the Balkan region



  28. Links 23/10/2021: Star Labs/StarLite, Ventoy 1.0.56

    Links for the day



  29. Gemini on Sourcehut and Further Expansion of Gemini Space

    Gemini protocol is becoming a widely adopted de facto standard for many who want to de-clutter the Internet by moving away from the World Wide Web and HTML (nowadays plagued by JavaScript, CSS, and many bloated frameworks that spy)



  30. Unlawful Regimes Even Hungary and Poland Would Envy

    There’s plenty of news reports about Polish and Hungarian heads of states violating human rights, but never can one find criticism of the EPO’s management doing the same (the mainstream avoids this subject altogether); today we examine how that area of Europe voted on the illegal "Strike Regulations" of Benoît Battistelli


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