Pretoria ODF Users Workshop

I’m a bit tardy in reporting what happened last week at the Second International ODF Users Conference, held in Pretoria, South Africa. This was the first time I was ever in Africa, much less South Africa, and so I was very much looking forward to the trip. It did not…

Continue reading

Remarks on the IBM Standards Principles

It’s been an interesting day as I’ve watched the various responses to the publication of the IBM Standards Principles. As I hoped, they raised some issues and started some debates. I suspect that longtime readers of this blog will find themes in the principles that I have discussed here before.…

Continue reading

Alex Brown: OOXML will be second to ODF

You’ve got to love Google Alerts. This morning I got this link to a Press Release from Giffin Brown with the title “OOXML will take second place following Microsoft’s announcement to support ODF, says Dr Alex Brown”. Alex was the convenor of the OOXML Ballot Resolution Meeting in Geneva in…

Continue reading

Changes to the SC 34/JTC1 rules for changing your OOXML vote

A colleague just pointed out that the rules have been modified for notifying SC 34 of JTC1 that you wish to change your national vote on OOXML/DIS 29500. I updated my original entry, but here is the new text from the SC 34 page. The main thing that is changed…

Continue reading

Some “OOXML has trouble” items from around the web

From the Financial Times, “Brussels to probe votes on Microsoft standard”: It asked standards organisations for views on these charges and any supporting details. It was unclear on Tuesday how many standards organisations worldwide had been contacted by the Commission. However, several national organisations in Europe confirmed they had received…

Continue reading

Descriptions of Microsoft Office binary formats

Evidently Microsoft made the descriptions of the binary formats for Office available on February 15 on their website. This was, of course, before the BRM so if anyone had questions or proposals about the binary formats in Geneva, the information was publicly available. Presumably a lot of people knew this.…

Continue reading

The OOXML BRM: Secrets and statistics

I’ve provided a few links in another entry to some of the negative views from the ISO/IEC Ballot Resolution Meeting for Microsoft’s OOXML specification (via ECMA). For the most part, I’m letting others comment, especially those who were in the meeting. I expect we’ll be hearing a lot more in…

Continue reading

Some metrics for measuring the success of the OOXML BRM

A very strange thing happened at the beginning of September, 2007. Microsoft issued a press release following the close of balloting on OOXML that began Today the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) released the results of the preliminary ballot to participating National Body members for the ISO/IEC DIS 29500 (Ecma…

Continue reading

Monday morning: OOXML BRM tidbits

I’m in Geneva this week because I’m taking part in the Open Forum Europe conference “Standards and the Future of the Internet.” In addition, of course, the ISO/IEC OOXML Ballot Resolution Meeting is taking place this week. The OFE organizers have to gone to great pains to make it clear…

Continue reading

While you’re waiting, don’t save in OOXML format

While all the drama is unfolding before the OOXML Ballot Resolution Meeting in Geneva at the end of February and the subsequent 30 day period while countries can still change their vote, I thought I would point out something that I assume is fairly obvious to most people: Saving your…

Continue reading

Comments on ECMA’s (aka Microsoft’s) OOXML comment resolutions

We’re starting to hear about how Microsoft (under ECMA’s name) is resolving the technical comments on OOXML. What do you need to know about this? Where are they? If this is a transparent process, we need to see the comments as well as all the proposed resolutions. What is there…

Continue reading

Some OOXML Ballot Resolution Meeting comments

The situation and rules for the Ballot Resolution Meeting (BRM) are starting to become clearer. As you may know, this is a follow-up to the September 2 vote where the Microsoft/ECMA OOXML (“Open” “XML”) specification failed on both measures to become an ISO/IEC JTC1.Given the way the system works, this…

Continue reading

Standards: We need to talk

Last Friday I had the pleasure of speaking at Tsinghua University in Beijing at an IBM-sponsored conference attended by over 200 government officials, business leaders, and academicians to discuss the confluence of three important topics: open standards, innovation, and intellectual property policy. Below you’ll find the text of my address,…

Continue reading

Last minute OOXML voters welcome

One little detail that many people do not know about the current voting rules on Microsoft’s Office product specification OOXML, now at the end of the Five Month Ballot for JTC1, is that there are two main classes of voters: “P” members and “O” members. The “P” is for “Participating”…

Continue reading

Microsoft cannot resolve OOXML JTC1 ballot comments

It is not the responsibility of Microsoft to resolve the many technical comments that have been presented on OOXML within the JTC1 ballot promise. They cannot promise to fix them. It is the responsibility of ECMA to handle this, since ECMA formally submitted the specification for Fast Track approval. ECMA…

Continue reading

An “OOXML is a bad idea” blog entry compendium

I thought I would put together a list of some of my blog entries that touch on the OOXML issue now being considered in the JTC1 Fast Track Procedure. This isn’t everything I’ve ever written, but it includes most of the main points. I’ve also included a few related entries.…

Continue reading

Project management via open source and open standards

Rob Weir sent me some links to an open source effort called OpenProj which aims to take on Microsoft Project. Evidently the project owners would like to integrate it into OpenOffice.org or, I would guess, at least make it compatible. ZDNet Blogs: “Microsoft Project to get open source competition” (try…

Continue reading

Top Ten blog entries and some stats

According to Google Analytics, the top ten most read blog entries in the last month in decreasing order of popularity are: “Why OOXML will not be an ISO/IEC standard in 2007” “No is no, to OOXML” “Interoperability Specifications Pledge” “Microsoft and ECMA: Together again, doing it again” “#9. My Second…

Continue reading

Why OOXML will not be an ISO/IEC standard in 2007

Even though the JTC1 ballot closes on September 2 on Microsoft’s product description for Microsoft Office, namely OOXML or DIS 29500, this will not become an ISO/IEC standard in 2007. This most pointedly means: At this time, you should make no policy decisions based on OOXML becoming an ISO/IEC standard…

Continue reading

Comment on Microsoft, ECMA, and XPS

In the last couple of weeks I’ve run a two entries (here and here) regarding Microsoft’s submission of its XPS specification to ECMA. I raised some questions along the line that this was the OOXML situation all over again, namely forcing a proprietary product spec through a vendor organization and…

Continue reading

Top Ten blog entries and some stats

Since I started experiencing the “CPU Exceeded” problems several weeks ago, I moved off Mint and exclusively to Google Analytics for my website statistics. Therefore these popularity rankings and stats come from that new source. The top ten most read blog entries in the last month in decreasing order of…

Continue reading

Microsoft and ECMA: Together again, doing it again

If you loved OOXML and the way that ECMA did exactly what Microsoft wanted, you’ll love the new working group around XPS, Microsoft’s home grown competitor to PDF. The current link for the new program is up on the ECMA website. Here’s what it says: Scope: The goal of the…

Continue reading

In case you were wondering how big 6000 pages is: OpenXML/OOXML/whatever

At various times, critics of Microsoft’s product specification-turned-ECMA-standard “OpenXML” or “OOXML” have pointed out how ridiculous it is to think that anyone other than Microsoft will ever fully and correctly implement the specification. I count myself among the critics and I may have even questioned whether Microsoft itself has or…

Continue reading

Why OOXML is not an open standard according to Microsoft

As is well known, the 6000+ page OOXML spec was shoved through ECMA at a furious pace (12 months), had to be compatible with Microsoft’s own products no matter what the group might want to do; is an XMLized version of Microsoft’s own product specifications; did not have open, transparent…

Continue reading