Re: IBM joins the OpenOffice.org community - Linux

This is a discussion on Re: IBM joins the OpenOffice.org community - Linux ; On Sep 11, 7:24 am, Linonut wrote: > After takin' a swig o' grog, Erik Funkenbusch belched out this bit o' wisdom: > > > OOXML has only been a standard for several months, ODF for several years. > > ...

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Thread: Re: IBM joins the OpenOffice.org community

  1. Re: IBM joins the OpenOffice.org community

    On Sep 11, 7:24 am, Linonut wrote:
    > After takin' a swig o' grog, Erik Funkenbusch belched out this bit o' wisdom:
    >
    > > OOXML has only been a standard for several months, ODF for several years.
    > > Still, you should read this:

    >
    > >http://blogs.gnome.org/jody/2007/09/...g-the-wrong-qu...

    >
    > > Apparently, it took less than a week to implement OOXML support in
    > > Gnumeric, but took significantly longer to support ODF.

    >
    > "It was significantly more difficult. To be clear, ODF support was
    > nowhere near as much work as the old binary filters, we are talking
    > about XML here. However, while Import filters start with parsing the
    > structure, in the end, extracting the basic state is no more than the
    > ante for the real work. You need to handle the impedance mismatches
    > between the concepts in the file format, and your implementation.
    > ODF's model of 'chartness' didn't fit well with
    > Gnumeric. In contrast XLSX may be ugly, but it's concepts
    > were very familiar from XLS. We already had much of the code required
    > to handle it."
    >
    > Just thought we'd clarify it, since you won't. Just to make it more
    > clear, this commentor says it in a different way:
    >
    > So, what you are saying is: because of your previous experience in
    > reverse engineering the old microsoft file formats, the ooxml
    > spreadsheet file format file importer implementation was easier and
    > faster than the 'new' odf spreadsheet file format. You just
    > had adapt the already existing code.
    >
    > Wow. That's FANTASTIC! What a great endorsing for ooxml! You
    > must try provide this comments to Microsoft so they can used them in
    > the BRM meeting for ISO approval.
    >
    > And another quote:
    >
    > It's disingenuous at best to say it took a couple of days to
    > write an import and export, and render/calculate in the middle, since
    > Gnumeric is a ten year old project. Think about someone starting now,
    > from scratch. It's not easy to render a cell, or even just
    > support shared formulas, when you start from scratch.


    The 2nd comment is complete nonsense. Why would we start from scratch
    for OOX but not for ODF ? One needs almost as much infrastructure for
    ODF (the feature set is somewhat smaller). The comparison was between
    OOX and ODF filters for existing applications.

    The 1st commenter was partially correct, but spins himself off the
    rails. Yes, the OOX implementation was easier because of it's
    similarity to .xls. That does not mean that ODF is by definition
    better. OOX and ODF both have substantial flaws. My position is that
    OOX is no worse than ODF.

    As a long time FLOSS advocate and contributor it saddens me to see the
    rhetorical excesses our partisans are generating. IMO free software
    will dominate in many markets because it is a better approach to
    software development. Let's have the courage of our convictions and
    encourage MS to open their documentation.


  2. Re: IBM joins the OpenOffice.org community

    After takin' a swig o' grog, JodyGnumeric belched out this bit o' wisdom:

    > On Sep 11, 7:24 am, Linonut wrote:
    > The 1st commenter was partially correct, but spins himself off the
    > rails. Yes, the OOX implementation was easier because of it's
    > similarity to .xls. That does not mean that ODF is by definition
    > better. OOX and ODF both have substantial flaws. My position is that
    > OOX is no worse than ODF.


    Technically, or legally?

    > As a long time FLOSS advocate and contributor it saddens me to see the
    > rhetorical excesses our partisans are generating. IMO free software
    > will dominate in many markets because it is a better approach to
    > software development. Let's have the courage of our convictions and
    > encourage MS to open their documentation.


    Do you think you will be able to implement OOXML fully?

    Do you think you will be able to deploy an implementing application
    without worries about Microsoft's legal rights?

    Will you be able to achieve 100% compatibity with OOXML, and keep up as
    it changes, even if the changes occur primarily in Microsoft's
    implementation?

    Finally, will a commercial vendor be able to enjoy these same
    opportunities without license fees, and be able to implement 100

    These questions aren't meant to be challenging, I think we all
    appreciate getting the story straight from you.

    I just don't think you can trust Microsoft in any manner when you
    intrude on their turf.

    Thanks for the post!

    Chris

    --
    Tux rox!

  3. Re: IBM joins the OpenOffice.org community

    On Sep 13, 1:47 pm, Linonut wrote:
    > After takin' a swig o' grog, JodyGnumeric belched out this bit o' wisdom:
    >
    > > On Sep 11, 7:24 am, Linonut wrote:
    > > The 1st commenter was partially correct, but spins himself off the
    > > rails. Yes, the OOX implementation was easier because of it's
    > > similarity to .xls. That does not mean that ODF is by definition
    > > better. OOX and ODF both have substantial flaws. My position is that
    > > OOX is no worse than ODF.

    >
    > Technically, or legally?


    Technically. IANAL. I did get legal advice as to whether Gnumeric
    would be able to use my implementation and was satisfied that the
    risks were manageable.

    > Do you think you will be able to implement OOXML fully?

    no, nor do I expect to support ODF fully. I expect to be able to
    implement a useful subset.

    > Do you think you will be able to deploy an implementing application
    > without worries about Microsoft's legal rights?

    s/deploy/distribute/
    yes, I have and MS has clearly approved of it publicly. On the other
    hand this is the US legal system we're talking about. If someone
    pulled a SCOX style slander attack, I'd have no resources to defend,
    and after this week, I don't see IBM coming to my rescue :-)

    > Will you be able to achieve 100% compatibity with OOXML, and keep up as
    > it changes, even if the changes occur primarily in Microsoft's
    > implementation?

    100% compat : no. see above.
    keep up as it changes : We've already had 3 ODF releases, the latest
    with substantial changes to the formulas. Neither format is going to
    remain static.

    > Finally, will a commercial vendor be able to enjoy these same
    > opportunities without license fees, and be able to implement 100

    It is never a good idea to extrapolate personal legal advice to other
    situations. My reading of the patent assignments is that anyone could
    implement OOX with only 2 provisions
    - Thou shalt not copy the ribbon widget and it's layout.
    : Ok, lot's of power users do not like it.
    - 'PivotTable' is a trademarked phrase, call them something else
    : Gnumeric will have 'DataSlicers'

    > I just don't think you can trust Microsoft in any manner when you
    > intrude on their turf.

    Generalize that to business in general and I'll agree whole heartedly,
    with a double helping for microsoft. Which is precisely why I want
    OOX out there as an ISO standard. The MS reps to ECMA have all been
    helpful, and responsive. However, it doesn't take much to imagine
    less friendly elements elsewhere in the organization. One of the ECMA
    meetings was help on the MS campus in Redmond, and there was a small
    part of me that expected to be whacked and stuffed in a recycling
    bin. MS has spent too many years doing nasty things for them to be
    forgotten, but they are doing the right thing here. Documenting the
    format, putting it under external control. I'd like to encourage the
    rational part of their organization to do more of that sort of thing.


  4. Re: IBM joins the OpenOffice.org community

    After takin' a swig o' grog, JodyGnumeric belched out this bit o' wisdom:

    > On Sep 13, 1:47 pm, Linonut wrote:
    >
    >> Will you be able to achieve 100% compatibity with OOXML, and keep up as
    >> it changes, even if the changes occur primarily in Microsoft's
    >> implementation?

    >
    > 100% compat : no. see above.
    > keep up as it changes : We've already had 3 ODF releases, the latest
    > with substantial changes to the formulas. Neither format is going to
    > remain static.


    That's a shame. Doesn't provide much encouragement for those
    governments looking to preserve documents indefinitely.

    > It is never a good idea to extrapolate personal legal advice to other
    > situations. My reading of the patent assignments is that anyone could
    > implement OOX with only 2 provisions
    > - Thou shalt not copy the ribbon widget and it's layout.
    > : Ok, lot's of power users do not like it.
    > - 'PivotTable' is a trademarked phrase, call them something else
    > : Gnumeric will have 'DataSlicers'


    Just make sure you make our own Erik F. aware of the nomenclature
    .

    >> I just don't think you can trust Microsoft in any manner when you
    >> intrude on their turf.

    > Generalize that to business in general and I'll agree whole heartedly,
    > with a double helping for microsoft. Which is precisely why I want
    > OOX out there as an ISO standard. The MS reps to ECMA have all been
    > helpful, and responsive. However, it doesn't take much to imagine
    > less friendly elements elsewhere in the organization. One of the ECMA
    > meetings was help on the MS campus in Redmond, and there was a small
    > part of me that expected to be whacked and stuffed in a recycling
    > bin. MS has spent too many years doing nasty things for them to be
    > forgotten, but they are doing the right thing here.


    > Documenting the format, ...


    Partially, it seems.

    > putting it under external control.


    By stuffing the ballot box?

    > I'd like to encourage the
    > rational part of their organization to do more of that sort of thing.


    That's the conundrum with Microsoft. It appears to have some smart,
    even nice, people, but the culture is geared towards ... Microsoft.

    Good luck. I truly hope that Abiword, Gnumeric, KOffice, OpenOffice,
    etc. can share ODF documents. And, since OOXML will be unavoidable
    (standards or no standards), I hope they can share those documents with
    MS Office.

    Unfortunately, the Microsoft boies like to wave the 100% compatibility
    bool**** around as a FUD flag to discourage the rest of the field.

    --
    Tux rox!

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