Archive for December, 2007

Løbeture

19 December, 2007

I aften løb vi kun en kort tur på knap 6 km, for at ahve tid til at være sociale i klubhuset bagefter.

Der var gløgg og pebernødder 😉

Denmark pretends MSOOXML is already an open standard

12 December, 2007

Today I read in groklaw.net that Denmark is pretending that MSOOXML is already an open standard.

And indeed Leif Lodahl has submitted a link to a manual for Danish authorities explaining how to handle the upcoming trial where they must be able to read both ODF and OOXML documents starting 1. January 2008.

In that manual I found the following section:

1.3.3 Hvad betyder det, at standarden er åben?
Standarden skal være:
> fuldstændigt dokumenteret og offentligt tilgængelig,
> frit implementérbar uden økonomiske, politiske eller juridiske begrænsninger på
implementering og anvendelse, hverken nu eller i fremtiden, og
> standardiseret og vedligeholdt i et åbent forum via en åben proces
(standardiseringsorganisation).

Translation:

1.3.3 What does it mean, that the standard is open?

The standard must be:

> Completely documented, and publicly available,

> freely implementable without economical, political or legal limitations on

implementation and use, whether now or in the future, and

> standardized and maintained in an open forum via an open process

(standardization organization)

From this (and having read some of the technical comments from the Danish national board of the ISO standardization committee which rejected the fast track approval of MSOOXML a few months ago) I think it is pretty clear that MSOOXML does not meet the criteria for an open standard as described in that manual.

That would make the manual misleading!

Let me point out what I mean:

quote: > Completely documented, and publicly available,

Comment: MSOOXML refers to closed MS documents, and therefore fails on both the “completely documented” and “publicly available” points.

quote: ”

> freely implementable without economical, political or legal limitations on

implementation and use, whether now or in the future, and

Comment: Several projects have been trying, or are trying to write plugins or converters for MSOOXML to ODF, but as far as I know none have so far succeeded. Partly because there are things in OOXML which can not be mapped to ODF. Partly because it is a huge standard and probably never intended to allow true interoperability.

Further, there are still patents on parts of the MSOOXML specification, and therefore it fails on the “freely implementable without economical, political or legal limitations” point.

quote: “> standardized and maintained in an open forum via an open process

(standardization organization)

Comment: MSOOXML also fails on this last point, at least it is not currently being maintained in an open forum. Perhaps if Microsoft were forced (for instance if every major office user on the planet decided to mandate truly open standards as the Dutch government and others have recently done) they would comply with the requirements for an open standard. But realistically, I think hell will freeze over before Microsoft does this.