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Microsoft latest bull**** : native support of ODF in Office 2007

,----[ Quote ]
| First of all, Microsoft is a huge Office licensing monopoly. It's so big it
| even surpasses Windows in sales. Any decline in Office licensing would be
| dramatic for Microsoft's future. With that alone, you know that any
| announcement from Microsoft that they are willing to interoperate with other
| people's software, namely applications, should be taken with a grain of salt.
| Here is how, with the release of Office 2007, Microsoft intends to keep their
| monopoly in Office licensing :
| Phase 1 - as long as there is not enough Office 2007 documents out there,
| make sure that customers understand that only Office 2007 can reliably
| migrate binary files to the new file formats. Hence the backwards
| compatibility claim which are part of the OOXML ISO marketing diversion
| (ironically inflated by critics).


Simon Phipps (Sun):

Microsoft Embraces ODF, At Last

,----[ Quote ]
| Of course, I might also reflect on the fact they are finally doing exactly
| what Stephe Walli said they ought to do to kill ODF. But for now, it's huge,
| warm congratulations on giving your customers the freedom to leave and the
| confidence to stay - and a small British mutter of "about bloody time".



Microsoft to support ODF and PDF in Office and standards work

,----[ Quote ]
| Don't get too excited by this outbreak of peace. SP2 isn’t due until the
| first half of 2009, meaning you've got a good year before you can save an
| Office 2007 document using ODF. Ahead of that lies SP1, due at the beginning
| of June.
| There is also no word on if, or when, SPs will be delivered that bring ODF
| and PDF to the vast install base of customers and developers working with
| older versions of Office.
| Accordingly, the ODF Alliance, the group of vendors and national bodies
| leading ODF, has warned against premature celebrations saying we should wait
| and see what Microsoft actually delivers in SP2. ODF Alliance managing
| director Marino Marcich said the proof of Microsoft’s commitment to openness
| would be whether ODF support is on a par with Open XML.
| He pointed to Microsoft's promise two years ago to support ODF, when it
| backed an existing BSD project for an Open XML Translator. The project, to
| deliver an Office add-on to save documents in ODF, is also due in the first
| half of 2009. That software has not been finished, and it’s not clear whether
| today’s announcement for support will use the translator.
| “Until Microsoft enables Office users to create and save in ODF by default as
| easily and fully as in Microsoft's own formats, governments will continue to
| adopt a 'buyer beware' attitude,” Marcich said in a statement.
| Significantly, Microsoft is not quite ready to give up on its ODF rival, Open
| XML, that it's been busy railroading through standards bodies across the
| globe.


My take on why Microsoft finally decided to support ODF

,----[ Quote ]
| Indeed, while OOXML has garnered enough votes to pass, several major
| countries including China, India, and Brazil among others, voted against it.
| It is safe to assume that, in accordance with the opinion the expressed
| through this vote, those countries will not adopt OOXML as a national
| standard either. India has already decided so for one. I know the same is
| true for South Africa. The same will probably be true for others.
| Now, think about this for a minute. This is a huge market that Microsoft
| cannot address with Office as it stands. Can they really disregard a market
| that size? I don’t think so. If not, what can they do about it?
| Well, they can keep trying to fight countries decisions not to adopt OOXML
| but if they haven’t managed to achieve that already, despite all the efforts
| they put in, including some rather unethical if not illegal ones, their
| chances of success on that front are pretty slim.


Microsoft to make Office open to ODF format

,----[ Quote ]
| Ivar Jachwitz, the deputy managing director of Standards Norway, the
| country's national standards setting body which adopted ODF as a recommended
| format for government archives, said the final proof of Microsoft's
| commitment to ODF and interoperability will be seen next year, when the
| updated version of Office 2007 reaches consumers."We have heard a lot of
| promises from Microsoft but as of yet, we are hoping for results," Jachwitz
| said.

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