Score one for the good guys: [Office 2007 will support ODF].. For
Microsoft, however, it should be seen as nothing less than a defeat,
after a protracted and often bitter rivalry between the competing
document standards.

How could OOXML have gone so wrong? If we take Microsoft at its word
that its goals include greater interoperability and transparency, we
can only chalk this disaster up to plain blundering. From its
inception, OOXML has been a textbook example of how not to develop an
open standard.

There are two main ways to fail at the standards game: You can create
software that handles documents in formats for which no true standards
exist, or you can create a standard that exists only on paper and in
committee, with no reference software implementation. Amazingly, for
all its hype and bluster, with OOXML Microsoft has managed to do both.

[Google, Adobe examples of good standards process.]

The key point to recognize is that standardization must be a two-way
street. Significantly, both Google Gears and Adobe's ECMAScript engine
are open source. As a result, there is transparency and accountability
for the standards at the implementation level, not just on paper.


http://www.computerworld.com.au/inde...4194304;fpid;1