Everyone’s talking: standards reform

I’m a relative newbie when it comes to standards, only being involved for the last 12 or 13 years. I’ve never before seen the amount of attention that is being brought to the idea of standards reform by so many groups of people at various levels of organization. Rather than…

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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.…

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Ten challenges and priorities for open standards in 2008

Over the next couple of weeks I plan to publish several entries on “challenges and priorities in 2008” on a range of topics, some related to work areas of interest, some related to personal ones. I’m kicking this off today with standards. In 2008, I think that we collectively should…

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Position paper for Yale Law School Information Society panel

This is the “position paper” for the Reputation Economies in Cyberspace panel on which I’m participating tomorrow at Yale Law School. It makes a lot of assumptions about definitions (I’m on the fourth panel of the day) and just touches on some of the things on which I plan to…

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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…

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I’m a document guy

Occasionally I get asked why I really care about all the issues around OpenDocument Format (ODF), related standards in this area, office suites, and the shift to Office 2.0. I give the reasons that long time readers of this blog have seen before about real interoperability, innovation from community developed…

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Dr. ODF: Examining OpenDocument Format with Python, Part 6

Before we go too much further, I want to show you a little bit of XML processing in Python. As we saw in Part 5, we can open up the content.xml component of our ODF file and retrieve the document. For a word processing document, this will include the text…

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Dr. ODF: Examining OpenDocument Format with Python, Part 5

It’s been several weeks since I last wrote in this series of entries examining what is in an OpenDocument Format file via some Python programming. In that last entry, I examined what was in the manifest file in the ODF zipfile. In a subsequent short entry, I noted that Rob…

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Dr. ODF: Examining OpenDocument Format with Python, Part 4

Last time we got deeper into our OpenDocument Format text file and started using the documentation for the ODF standard to understand what should be in the document. We learned that there can be some variations in the internal structure between different documents. The information is saved in a zip…

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Making bad choices, over and over again

Over in his blog, IBM’s Rob Weir further delves into the underlying specifications Microsoft uses in their office XML spec and their almost pathological avoidance of accepted industry standards created by experts in what they are doing in ECMA. In this installment, “Math You Can’t Use”, Rob looks at how…

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Rob Weir: How ECMA MOO-XML is bringing back dead Microsoft specs and skipping open standards

Rob Weir’s latest blog entry “Cum mortuis in lingua mortua” delves into VML, an old Microsoft spec that went out of fashion and acceptance years ago, and SVG, a W3C spec that has been a standard for 5 years. Would you be surprised that the ECMA MOO-XML spec uses VML?…

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Open Standards vs. Open Source, Part 4: The SOA Connection

Part 1: Standards Part 2: Software Part 3: Open Source Software Part 4: The SOA Connection In the beginning, there was one computer and it was big and slow and it filled an entire room. Eventually, there were many computers and they were smaller and they could talk to each…

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More on presentation software – look at Opera Show

Late last night I put up an entry asking where was the killer open source presentation software. Sam Hiser responded with a comment as did a couple of other people and Sam has a longer piece on his blog. Sam discussed Dave Raggett’s Slidy and also mentioned presentation support in…

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XForms 1.0 (Second Edition) is now a W3C Recommendation

The W3C has finalized its approval of the XForms 1.0 (Second Edition) Recommendation. The spec itself is here. This hasn’t hot the news media to any large degree, but it is nevertheless an important development. I suspect XForms will be a future standards battleground, though I think that it will…

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Regarding an ODF SDK

David Berlind asks over in his ZDNet blog where the SDK (Software Development Kit) is for OpenDocument. It’s a good question, so let me talk to it for a bit. I’ll also say up front that it is a good idea and it should be open source. We want everyone,…

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Open Standards vs. Open Source, Part 1: Standards

Part 1: Standards Part 2: Software Part 3: Open Source Software Part 4: The SOA Connection In my wish list for 2006 that I blogged about a couple of weeks ago, the very first item was my desire for people to have a better understanding of the difference between open…

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IBM Opening Remarks at the Open Forum on the Future of Electronic Data Formats for the Commonwealth

These are the opening remarks that I planned to give at the meeting at the Massachusetts State House this morning. What I actually said varied from this since I couldn’t resist ad libbing a bit. In any case, this is the gist of it and I think it directly gives…

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ODF, XForms, Accessibility: Connecting the Dots

I’ve been meaning to point to the blog entry by David Berlind called “ODF subpar for the disabled? Not so fast says Google researcher” and add a comment. First, T.J. Raman was a colleague of mine when I was in IBM Research as well as later when I first moved…

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More tidbits re the ECMA development

Here are a couple of interesting links regarding the Microsoft XML Formats and their move to ECMA. ECMA is basically a RAND (reasonable and non-discriminatory licensing) organization, vs., say the W3C, which RF (royalty free). While Microsoft has issued a covenant not to sue, what will the situation be for…

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Some comments on Microsoft’s Office XML plans regarding ECMA

As I mentioned earlier this weekend, I was away when the news broke about how Microsoft is planning to push its XML formats through ECMA and then perhaps ISO, thereby creating an “open” standard. As I’ve stated before, it is naive to have multiple definitions for “open” and we should…

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ACM Queue article: “XML and Semi-Structured Data”

There’s an interesting article “XML and Semi-Structured Data” over at ACM Queue by C. M. Sperberg-Mcqueen of the W3C. Sperberg-Mcqueen is one of the long time movers and shakers in the XML standardization community. In it he says: XML arose from efforts to represent documents in a device- and application-independent…

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The OpenDocument discussion session yesterday at Harvard Law School

Yesterday I took part in a two hour panel-and-townhall type discussion on OpenDocument Format at the Berkman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard Law School. It was too long for me to recount or maybe even remember everything I said, but luckily you can watch the whole thing. It…

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