CyberTech Rambler

January 23, 2007

Well, at least IBM did it openly

Filed under: Uncategorized — ctrambler @ 11:23 am

I mention that in the previous post (Who has more to lose?), that both sides in the ODF/OOXML debate is guity of bashing the other side, especially at critical times. For IBM, it is its current increase in activity on their staff’s personal blog, especially Rob Weir’s, as ISO is considering whether to fast-track OOXML. Microsoft is allegedly behind the campaign against ODF when Massachusett throws OOXML predecessor out of its ETRM. I hinted it is Microsoft policy to use proxies to attack ODF and as if proof is needed, we have Rick Jelliff saying he got an offer from Microsoft who wants to contract someone to correct so-called disinformation on Wikipedia on ODF/OOXML debate.

While I am in no doubt that if Jelliff takes up the offer,  all that Jelliff does is to correct errors and not writing propaganda for OOXML and the fact that Jelliff disclose this when he did not have to support my case. It is sad to see that Microsoft would not do the corrections using its own name. The examples Jelliff use it his blog post about legacy document support in OOXML critism are controversial points about OOXML. Although the benefit-of-doubt must be given to Microsoft, it is difficult t0 see how a third party application can achieve the aim of OOXML, i.e., faithfully recreates legacy Microsoft Office document, without treating those contentious items as compulsory, rather than optional. This point is important as it is one of the stated aim of the OOXML standard. Rather than remove that section all together, I feel a clarification of the criticism, and presentation of Jelliff’s view point, should go side-by-side. The truth is, unless you and I are in the Office Productivity Application business, or contributes to Office Prodcutiveity Application such as OpenOffice.org/KOffice, all discussion we have are not grounded in experience, but simply opinions. This actually means our opinions must be taken with a pinch of salt by our audience.

The point I will like to make here is that Microsoft should come out and edit the documents themselves openly, not hire a proxy to do it for them. They may have the best of intention, a balance view, when  they decide to hire proxy. Unfortunately, past behaviour means my opinion is biased against them. At least IBM did its opposition to OOXML openly. This is more gutsy than to hide behind third parties, especially paid third parties.

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