04.26.08

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Welcome EuroOffice, a Microsoft-Free Era for Software

Posted in ECMA, Europe, GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Open XML, OpenDocument, OpenOffice at 10:44 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

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Several major European nations were noted and praised some weeks ago for ignoring OOXML, essentially giving it the pass blindly, having realise what it really is. Jan "you are well paid, shut up" van den Beld, who now works for a Microsoft lobbying arm (formerly of ECMA International) implicitly threatened such governments, but it truly made Microsoft look more arrogant than people already perceive it.

It is encouraging to find that Europe presses on with its plans and EuroOffice, a derivative of Sun’s OpenOffice.org, has been created to accommodate market needs.

EuroOffice is the name of a free and open-source OpenOffice.org derivative and a set of accompanying free and non-free extensions. Most of the extensions also work with “vanilla” OpenOffice.org.

The LGPL3-licensed ODFDOM is meanwhile being prepared, so it looks encouraging for the continent which considers banning Microsoft from government contracts and actively studies a migration to GNU/Linux and ODF at the moment. For whatever reason, the press has given almost no attention to this very major news. Anyway, here is the latest about ODFDOM:

The first pre-version of the Java 5 reference implementation of ODFDOM is planned to become available under LGPL3 in May 2008.

Microsoft won't sit idly. It already sees its sales declining because fair competition is encouraged, even enforced.

“The government is not trying to destroy Microsoft, it’s simply seeking to compel Microsoft to obey the law. It’s quite revealing that Mr. Gates equates the two.”

Government official

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3 Comments

  1. ZiggyFish said,

    April 27, 2008 at 12:45 am

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    I don’t think you have told us why the EU is trying to ban. They trying to ban Microsoft, because as part of the EU rules, their not allowed to have contracts by companies that have been fined by the EU.

  2. Roy Schestowitz said,

    April 27, 2008 at 1:07 am

    Gravatar

    The text is here [PDF warning]

    http://www.heide-ruehle.de/heide2007/media/doc/1207747685964.pdf

    On march 2004, the Commission adopted a decision declaring that Microsoft had seriously violated EU competition rules by abusing the dominant position in the software market, causing a huge damage both on competitors and consumers. On 17 September 2007, the Court of First Instance (CFI) rejected Microsoft’s appeal (Case T-201/04). Microsoft has not appealed the CFI ruling, which can be deemed to have the force of res judicata. Following the 17 September 2007 judgment, the European Commission imposed on 27 February 2008 a substantial fine (899 million euros) on Microsoft for its non-compliance up until 22 October 2007 with its obligations under the Commission’s March 2004 Decision to provide interoperability information on reasonable terms.

    While Microsoft’s behaviour had negative effects on millions of offices in companies and governments around the world, this fine for flouting the European competition law represents the highest amount ever imposed in fifty years of EC Competition law for abuse of dominant position. Furthermore, this fine follows a previous one of 280.5 million euros that was imposed in July 2006 essentially for the same reasons.

    Pursuant to article 93 (b) & (c) of the Financial Regulation, which implements article 45 (2)(c) & (d) of Directive 2004/18/EC on public procurement, candidates or tenderers shall be excluded from participation in procurement procedures if: (b) they have been convicted of an offence concerning their professional conduct by a judgment which has the force of res judicata; (c) they have been guilty of grave professional misconduct proven by any means which the contracting authority can justify;

    Considering that Microsoft continued to abuse its powerful market position after the Commission’s March 2004 decision requiring it to change its practices, and given the fact that it is already the third time in four years that the Commission had to impose fines or penalty payment for non-compliance with a Commission decision, and bearing in mind that the 17 September 2007 CFI judgment has the force of res judicata, does the Commission consider that Article 93 (b) and (c) of Financial Regulation, read in conjunction with article 45(2) of Directive 2004/18/EC, could be applied to Microsoft in this particular case and with regard to any ongoing or future public procurement procedure? If it is the case, could we therefore consider that Microsoft does not fulfill the conditions to participate in such public procurement procedure?”

    Interestingly enough, the EU needs to respond by the end of May (roughly), which is just shortly before the deadline for OOXML to be thrown out of ISO (this is far from over, so expect big action).

  3. LinuxIsFun said,

    April 27, 2008 at 3:04 am

    Gravatar

    Interestingly enough, the EU needs to respond by the end of May (roughly), which is just shortly before the deadline for OOXML to be thrown out of ISO (this is far from over, so expect big action).

    I hope this does happen, but it seems money changers are in power so I dont expect any miracles to happen…they will just put another face saving FAQ on their website…

    M$ is going to win again and its going to take down ISO and W3C along with it…

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