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Office 2007 Fails OOXML Test With 122,000 Errors

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 5 years ago | from the money-greases-the-wheels dept.

Software 430

I Don't Believe in Imaginary Property writes "Groklaw is reporting that some people have decided to compare the OOXML schema to actual Microsoft Office 2007 documents. It won't surprise you to know that Office 2007 failed miserably. If you go by the strict OOXML schema, you get a 17 MiB file containing approximately 122,000 errors, and 'somewhat less' with the transitional OOXML schema. Most of the problems reportedly relate to the serialization/deserialization code. How many other fast-tracked ISO standards have no conforming implementations?"

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430 comments

Pussy Pounding (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#23149732)

it's what I do

I wish I had mod points right now... (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#23149736)

This would be a great thread to put some more negative karma in twitter's sock puppets.

What's the Problem? (5, Insightful)

eldavojohn (898314) | more than 5 years ago | (#23149738)

If you can change a vote of "no with comments [slashdot.org]" to "yes" I don't see why you couldn't change "fails with 122,000 errors" to "passes." I mean, when your standard passes through sheer lobbying and politics with little technical analysis, it's going to take a lot to surprise me with how epically it fails.

Re:What's the Problem? (-1, Redundant)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150016)

All I have to say is that it's a good thing Microsoft isn't running the 2008 Presidential Election!

Re:What's the Problem? (4, Informative)

bhtooefr (649901) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150142)

Diebold voting machines run Windows CE.

Re:What's the Problem? (4, Funny)

eldavojohn (898314) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150296)

All I have to say is that it's a good thing Microsoft isn't running the 2008 Presidential Election!
Diebold voting machines run Windows CE.
Please press any key to start voting!

>> [Enter]

Are you sure you want to vote today?
(Allow/Deny)

>> Allow

*An anthropomorphic paper clip appears*
"Hi! I'm Clippy, I see you're trying to vote!"
"Let me help you with that! Which of these do you enjoy the most:"
A) Fear Mongering
B) Economy Stunting Taxation ...

Yeah, I can't wait to vote this year ...

You're missing the point of an ISO standard (0)

omkhar (167195) | more than 5 years ago | (#23149756)

And why is that an issue? The job of ISO is to develop the standard in an implementable fashion. Top down.

Not a bottom up, adopt the lowest common denominator of whats already out there

Re:You're missing the point of an ISO standard (5, Insightful)

Richard Steiner (1585) | more than 5 years ago | (#23149858)

Without a reference implementation, how do you know a standard is valid?

Re:You're missing the point of an ISO standard (1)

somersault (912633) | more than 5 years ago | (#23149980)

Wha? Valid in what respects? The standard is meant to be the reference for the implementation, not the other way round.

This story is one of the funniest I've seen for a while though :)

Re:You're missing the point of an ISO standard (4, Insightful)

dvice_null (981029) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150102)

> Wha? Valid in what respects?

Valid as in possible to implement. How could a standard not be possible to implement you ask? Well that is simple. E.g. write a program that follows this standard:
1. It must print "1" on exit
2. It must print "2" on exit

As you can see, it would not be possible to implement a program according to that standard. That is why someone would need to write a reference application implementing the standard to notice errors like this. Before the standard is given to the whole world to be implemented.

It is better that only one has to wonder the errors of the standards, rather than the whole world.

Re:You're missing the point of an ISO standard (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#23150512)

write a program that follows this standard:
1. It must print "1" on exit
2. It must print "2" on exit
onExit() {
      print("1");
      print("2");
}

What's so hard about that?

Re:You're missing the point of an ISO standard (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#23150564)

It could print "1" and then "2" on exit and be valid under that standard.

Re:You're missing the point of an ISO standard (5, Interesting)

hardburn (141468) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150162)

You need at least one coded reference implementation or else you'll end up with something in the standard which is difficult/impossible to implement. Especially in a 6,000+ page standard.

ISO would be well advised to take the method the IETF uses, which is to have two independent teams implement the standard based on the documentation before an RFC can reach a Draft Standard status. I suspect ODF would have only benefited from this process by cutting down its rough edges, while OOXML would have been so cumbersome that it would be simply dropped.

Re:You're missing the point of an ISO standard (5, Insightful)

davidkv (302725) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150576)

There's a fundamental difference between the IETF and ISO. IETF makes standards of stuff that has been proven to work (or at least be implementable), whereas ISO wants to write specs to tell people what should work.

A bit like comparing tcp/ip and whatsitsname (x400?). It doesn't really matter how nice something looks on paper if there's no good implementation of it.

Re:You're missing the point of an ISO standard (1)

Schraegstrichpunkt (931443) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150290)

Wha? Valid in what respects? The standard is meant to be the reference for the implementation, not the other way round.

So you think widely-adopted standards are generally just pulled out of someone's backside?

I suggest you read BCP 9 [ietf.org].

You're doubly missing the point (4, Informative)

EmbeddedJanitor (597831) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150026)

Developing a standard without having a working example is very foolish. Stuff that looks cool in a standard often does not work out well in real life (theory != practice). Technically, it is far better to survey the landscape for things that work well and standardise those. There are problems with this approach: the companies that have implemented the winning standards often have a competitive advantage,lobbying can wreck the process and the standards might be burdened with patents (and standards users need to pay royalties to the patent holders).

For one example where this has worked well, consider vehicle networking. Bosch invented/designed the Control Area Network (CAN). This was standardised by SAE as part of the in vehicle networking specification. ISO then just adopted the SAE stuff and extended it in some new areas. The stuff all works well and is based on proven technology (ie. the technology existed before the standards).

Re:You're missing the point of an ISO standard (4, Insightful)

Schraegstrichpunkt (931443) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150238)

And why is that an issue? The job of ISO is to develop the standard in an implementable fashion. Top down.

That explains why OSI is such a trainwreck compared to IP.

Not a bottom up

So why was ODF approved, then? Or ISO C?

adopt the lowest common denominator of whats already out there

"Lowest common denominator" is not equivalent to bottom-up design.

Re:You're missing the point of an ISO standard (5, Insightful)

Skrapion (955066) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150420)

Not a bottom up, adopt the lowest common denominator of whats already out there
Sure, the ISO does that a lot, and it's a fine approach. But that takes time, which is why the fast-track process was designed for standards which have already been implemented.

Does anyone know if Open Office is compliant with (4, Interesting)

notaprguy (906128) | more than 5 years ago | (#23149760)

the Open Document Format? Just curious.

Re:Does anyone know if Open Office is compliant wi (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#23149872)

Is your mom compliant with the Open Dick Format? Just curious.

Re:Does anyone know if Open Office is compliant wi (-1, Troll)

notaprguy (906128) | more than 5 years ago | (#23149928)

Anon, let me introduce you to stupid. You have a lot in common.

Re:Does anyone know if Open Office is compliant wi (1)

Kalriath (849904) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150236)

Technically, no. It doesn't have a full implementation of the standard (in fact, nothing has a full implementation).

It is however, quite close.

Re:Does anyone know if Open Office is compliant wi (1)

notaprguy (906128) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150584)

So then I'd ask what does it mean to be "quite close?" I don't expect you to have all the details but I always wonder if /. postings like the parent slamming MSFT could just as easily be relabled. In this case, the headling might have been: OpenOffice fails ODF Test with 3224 Errors

Technical Details (5, Insightful)

Enderandrew (866215) | more than 5 years ago | (#23149776)

Technical details mean absolutely nothing in this discussion. I thought we established this.

Re:Technical Details (1)

sm62704 (957197) | more than 5 years ago | (#23149878)

122,000 Errors? That's a lot of "technical details!" Yikes!

Re:Technical Details (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#23150030)

122,000 times nothing is still nothing

ISO to fast track mecca time? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#23149796)

That's the level of behavior we've witnessed so why not? [bbc.co.uk]

PWNED!!!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#23149798)

Somehow, this fails to surprise me... Microsoft pushes a crappy standard that they won't even follow. This just keep getting better and better.

*XML IS DYING (0, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#23149820)

It is now official. Netcraft has confirmed: *XML is dying

One more crippling bombshell hit the already beleaguered *XML community...

Stop using MiB (3, Insightful)

hedleyroos (817147) | more than 5 years ago | (#23149824)

Men in Black? What happened to good old megabytes? The article says 17MB!

Re:Stop using MiB (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#23149914)

Men in Black? What happened to good old megabytes? The article says 17MB!
Maybe, but I make this shit look GOOD.

Re:Stop using MiB (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#23149926)

I see a lot of this happening in Wikipedia articles lately, too. Someone let the hyperpedantic nerds out of their basements to confuse every normal person on the fucking planet.

Re:Stop using MiB (2, Insightful)

Digi-John (692918) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150148)

I see a lot of this happening in Wikipedia articles lately, too. Someone let the hyperpedantic nerds out of their basements to confuse every normal person on the fucking planet.

Similar to the new prevalence of BCE and CE vs. BC and AD. Come on, you must admit that "Anno Domine" is far cooler than "Current/Christian Era". Up next, we change "Wednesday" to "Threeday", because references to Odin are just far too Euro-centric. That is, assuming we stick with that Judeo-Christian concept about Sunday being the seventh day.

Re:Stop using MiB (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#23150476)

That is, assuming we stick with that Judeo-Christian concept about Sunday being the seventh day


Unless you talk to Seventh Day Adventist religion followers who say that Saturday is the seventh day.

Re:Stop using MiB (3, Funny)

Richard Steiner (1585) | more than 5 years ago | (#23149964)

Shh... The submitter is trying to impose those trendy "base 2" SI prefixes on us in spite of 40+ years of prior art to the contrary. Another case of ivory tower types not being sophisticated enough to grok current industry usage, methinks...

And don't even get me started on folks who assume a byte is always eight (b) bits. There's a reason folks in the Real World use the term "octet", people. Really.

Sheesh! :-) :-)

Re:Stop using MiB (3, Insightful)

Yvan256 (722131) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150174)

Just because people have been using SI prefixes to redefine that "kilo means 1024" for 40+ years doesn't mean they're right.

Also, "octet" is the french word for "byte", so it's also 8-bit. :P

Re:Stop using MiB (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#23150438)

Also, "octet" is the french word for "byte", so it's also 8-bit. :P
Pedantry alert: that's the point, he's saying we should use the term 'octet' for 8 bits, rather than 'byte'.

Re:Stop using MiB (4, Informative)

Richard Steiner (1585) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150522)

Language is typically defined by usage, not the other way around. Unless you're the French, perhaps. :-)

Remember that "kilo" *did* (and does) mean 1024 in a computing context. Everybody understood that who was involved on a technical level. Everybody. There was no miscommunication in the general case ... except when it came to laypeople who largely didn't understand what was described in the first place. When that happened, we just told them that bigger is better and moved on...

Your comment about octet confuses and annoys me. Go away. :-)

Re:Stop using MiB (2, Funny)

hardburn (141468) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150240)

More like fixing 40+ years of hard drive manufacturers lieing to us about storage space.

Re:Stop using MiB (4, Informative)

Schraegstrichpunkt (931443) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150604)

40+ years of prior art to the contrary

"1 MW" has always meant 1,000,000 watts. "9.6 kbps" has always meant 9,600 bits per second. A "500 GB" hard drive still means 500,000,000,000 bytes.

There are relatively few places where this is screwed up, most of which fall into these categories:

  • RAM or things derived from RAM (e.g. page sizes) where the physical layout imply powers of 2
  • Microsoft

The latter doesn't even get it consistent. "1.44 MB" floppies are actually 1440 * 1024 bytes.

Another case of ivory tower types not being sophisticated enough to grok current industry usage, methinks...

"Current industry usage" is to be ambiguous; 17 MB means "somewhere between 16 and 18 megabytes". The people you call "ivory tower types", including the IEC [www.iec.ch], are trying to use more precise language.

And don't even get me started on folks who assume a byte is always eight (b) bits. There's a reason folks in the Real World use the term "octet", people.

The term "octet" does exactly the same thing that the binary prefixes do: They indicate more precisely what is being talked about.

As someone else in this thread said, "just because some people made the mistake, decades ago, of choosing to equal kilo to 1024 doesn't mean they were right."

Re:Stop using MiB (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#23150062)

The "good old megabytes" is what's confusing people who buy "500GB" drives only to find out that their OS tells them it's only 465.66GB (GiB).

Just because some people made the mistake, decades ago, of choosing to equal kilo to 1024 doesn't mean they were right.

And just because most people in the USA only see "kilo" with computer tems doesn't mean it sounds right to the rest of this planet. A kilometer is not 1024 meter.

Re:Stop using MiB (1)

BorgCopyeditor (590345) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150242)

Yes, so plainly the remedy is to silently replace "megabytes" and "kilobytes" with unpronounceable sound-alikes that are graphically indistinct in their abbreviated form.

Geeks insist that the new units of measurement are inherently more "rational." This penetrating insight, of course, is what led to the development and widespread acceptance of the superior metric hour.

Re:Stop using MiB (1)

jedidiah (1196) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150418)

Consumers were confused by corporations willing to redefine terms to
suit their own avarice and fools like you willing to tolerate it.

A real megabyte is divisible by an order of magnitude in the relevant
counting system. A psuedo-megabyte is not. This sort of fiat standard
is not supposed to be the point of SI. Computational convenience is.

The fact that parallel sets of jargon are needed to keep track of both
just demonstrates how absurd it is to treat computer memory as if it
were a rack of lamb.

This confusion did not exist until the likes of Seagate chose to create
it for their own benefit.

Re:Stop using MiB (1)

k33l0r (808028) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150616)

What happened to good old megabytes?

There are fairly valid reasons to use the "official" IEEE 1541 prefixes.

Since a gigabyte can be taken to mean either 2^30 bytes (real people) or 10^3 bytes (HDD manufacturers) this leads to a fairly substantial error, especially when one considers volume sizes today.

Sure one can contend that using plain bytes, or even bits, eliminates this problem but most folks (myself included) have trouble comprehending extremely large/long numbers, at least at a glance.

A heck of a job, Brownie! (5, Funny)

llamafirst (666868) | more than 5 years ago | (#23149832)

In a blog posting this week, Alex Brown, leader of the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) group in charge of maintaining the Office Open XML (OOXML) standard, revealed that Microsoft Office 2007 documents do not meet the latest specifications of the ISO OOXML draft standard. "Word documents generated by today's version of Microsoft Office 2007 do not conform to ISO/IEC 29500," said Brown in a blog post recounting the process of testing a document against the "strict" and "transitional" schema defined in the standard.

Ahem. Let me be the first to say:
Brownie, you're doing a heck of a job! [wikipedia.org]

Re:A heck of a job, Brownie! (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#23150416)

Don't you mean "hack of a job"?

Duh (4, Funny)

Arreez (1252440) | more than 5 years ago | (#23149874)

Seriously......anyone not see it coming? Office 2007 being submitted to this test is like submitting to a "Will it float?" test with your hands tied and the good ol' cement shoes strapped on.

Re:Duh (1)

Dunbal (464142) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150376)

Well, that all depends on the density of the liquid you plan on throwing it in...? You can't change the laws of physics!

OK ok I agree, usually it's water, and no it doesn't float; but on slashdot, who knows!

You're missing the point... (5, Funny)

voislav98 (1004117) | more than 5 years ago | (#23149884)

which is that it's the standard that's deficient. I'm sure that the standard will soon be "improved" so it conforms with Office 2007

Re:You're missing the point... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#23150064)

Its sort of putting you genital in place of your ass and you ass in place of your genital.

OOXML is such a Fraud! (5, Insightful)

Nom du Keyboard (633989) | more than 5 years ago | (#23149916)

OOXML is such a fraud that it's disgusting that we continue to waste such time on it. If it could win on the merits it wouldn't need such underhanded tactics by its (very few) supporters. It's clearly intended as an ODF-killer by creating an unnecessary parallel "standard".

Impressive (5, Insightful)

rumith (983060) | more than 5 years ago | (#23149930)

While it's hardly unexpected that Office 2007 document format isn't *cough* ISO compliant, 122k errors for a 60Mb file results into a remarkable ~500 bytes of markup per error.

I really do not understand where Microsoft is heading. They've rammed their miserable OOXML format through - supposedly so they could advertise their product as ISO compliant. But what's their advantage now that their product is shown to be so horribly incompatible?

Re:Impressive (2, Insightful)

SatanicPuppy (611928) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150058)

If the open standard is bloated and buggy, then people will keep using the closed formats.

Microsoft has zero percentage in having a good, workable, open format.

Re:Impressive (4, Insightful)

PitaBred (632671) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150234)

Except that open standards are usually government mandated. Microsoft would have otherwise ignored it completely, going with the lock-in you describe since they "own" the office landscape. They submitted OOXML because they didn't want to be locked out of new gov't initiatives requiring more accessible data formats, so they forced their crap through trying to call it open, while not really being so.

Re:Impressive (1)

Yvan256 (722131) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150108)

What if their goal was to promote "open formats" as being incredibly difficult to be compatible with, that all open format documents (and their content) were at risk, and that closed, controlled proprietary formats were the only sane choice?

Re:Impressive (1)

rumith (983060) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150556)

Hardly so. Being open or closed doesn't directly contribute to the difficulty of complying to the format, except that only the proprietor of a closed format is likely to be compliant to it. Besides, there are document formats which don't take an eternity to become compatible with.

Re:Impressive (2, Insightful)

daveime (1253762) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150192)

This IS XML we are talking about ... even transmitting a boolean yes or no which should in principle take 1 bit becomes :-

<xml schema="http:fuckingxml.com">
<myboolean>
TRUE
</myboolean>
</xml>

On that basis, 500 bytes per error probably equates to around 1.152 bits of "useful" error information.

Rather than standardize even more bloated crap, on this occasion I applaud MS for comitting OOXML to the early grave it deserves, by failing to even pass the tests on a standard they effectively created (and paid a lot of money) to get approved.

Re:Impressive (1)

vidarh (309115) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150470)

Just because you're as incompetent when it comes to designing sane XML schemas as Microsoft doesn't mean a well designed XML based format would be anywhere near that verbose.

HTML (4, Interesting)

WK2 (1072560) | more than 5 years ago | (#23149942)

It's not a fast-tracked ISO standard, but HTML and CSS have no conforming implementations. I'm not sure, but links might conform to HTML.

Agree... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#23150118)

... I know more standards that have no conforming implementation, besides the above ones. There must be hundreds of them out there. A standard is a piece of theory, something someone can pickup and implement - it never dictates an implementation.

Re:HTML (1)

wicka (985217) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150130)

I'm sure early browsers (WorldWideWeb, Mosaic) had fairly accurate implementations of HTML, but it just sort of got out of hand from there. But the problem here is that there is no conforming implementation and there never was.

Re:HTML (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#23150150)

That's not strictly true. Ambiguities in the specs are handled differently and there's no published DOM level 0 spec. That said I can hand valid xhtml strict to Gecko, WebKit and Presto and it's supported as spec. Likewise for CSS and js, where the spec is ambiguous vendors attempt to be bug compatible.

Microsoft are hopeless and being bug compatible with them would effectively hand them control of the spec. Anybody else see a pattern here?

Re:HTML (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#23150248)

Speaking of HTML, it's amazing how many high-profile sites fail validation. For example, I just ran http://www.nytimes.com/ [nytimes.com] through http://validator.w3.org/ [w3.org] with a result of "Failed validation, 454 Errors." "Something like HTML that browsers can more-or-less read" is not actual HTML. When I redid a local newspaper's site, I did it by hand (in nicely formatted, human-readable HTML) and made sure that every page passed validation before it went live.

Re:HTML (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#23150268)

but HTML and CSS have no conforming implementations.
Not true. Newer versions might not be fully supported by implementations, but old ones are.
It is of course valid criticism wrt. way W3C develops solutions to non-problems (which is what's happening -- over-complicated unnecessary extensions to things like DOM). But doesn't have much relevance to this particular discussion.

Re:HTML (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#23150274)

Isn't Amaya supposed to be conforming?

122,000 errors sure but... (5, Insightful)

msh104 (620136) | more than 5 years ago | (#23149992)

I don't want to destroy the mood that the slashdot editor wanted to create by posting this sensational peace of propaganda. but this is not 122.000 bugs is it? this is a parser generating 122.000 error results. sure it's bad.. but anyone who has ever tried to make code w3c compatible or debug any piece of code will know that just 1 error can result into many many many error results. thus ( despite my will for it to be so ) does not really give you much insight in microsofts compatibility with it's own standard.

Re:122,000 errors sure but... (1)

pembo13 (770295) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150570)

I don't know, but the summary I read didn't claim it was 122,000 bugs, said it was 122,000 errors. Unless they changed the summary after you read it.

As bad as it may seem... (2, Insightful)

HetMes (1074585) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150018)

... it's actually worse. We're all agreeing here, it's who comes up with the most ludicrous comparison or the most disturbing details about the case what counts. So, the question is: What can any of us do about this?

down with mebibytes! (2, Insightful)

jollyreaper (513215) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150028)

you get a 17 MiB file
This whole mebibyte thing seems like an April Fool's prank that's been carried on for too many years. I can't believe people are actually using it now.

Re:down with mebibytes! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#23150298)

I'd rather have a standard Mebibyte than a Megabyte that can be interpreted into 3 different values.

Re:down with mebibytes! (1)

vidarh (309115) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150494)

So in other words the solution for those of us who hate those ridiculous names is to start using them with 5-6 wildly different definitions to make them more ambiguous... Hmm. good idea.

Up with mebibytes! (4, Insightful)

JustinOpinion (1246824) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150372)

Ha!

Then there are those of us who think the prank is the people who refuse to use it (and who trot out the tired "hard drive manufacturers are stealing my disk space" myth/meme).

Seriously, the one thing we can agree on is that there is often confusion regarding whether someone meant "1000" or "1024" when they used a prefix. The difference in approach between the two camps is:
1. Stick with the status quo (where one tries to guess the convention being used based on context). That is, just accept with the confusion/inaccuracy.
2. Use SI units in the original SI sense (powers of 10) and use new binary prefixes when you really mean it (power of 2). That is, create a convention and adhere to it.

Interesting that in a discussion about standards (and failures thereof) you would argue that a standard meant to reduce confusion is a prank! I agree, by the way, that "mebibyte" sounds kinda silly... but who cares? It gets the job done. ("Quark" was a silly name, but it's now deeply ingrained in science and no one thinks twice about it.)

For what it's worth, many software products now use the binary prefix [wikipedia.org] notation (e.g. Konqueror).

Re:down with mebibytes! (1)

jedidiah (1196) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150492)

Anytime I see this I want to bludgeon the offender with a book on scientific notation.

I Remember When... (2, Interesting)

Nom du Keyboard (633989) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150078)

I remember when back in the good old days of the IBM EGA (640x350 6-bit color) adapter, when semi-clone cards were made they were all rounded up and tested against the IBM "standard". The IBM card had a couple flaws at the time, two of the bottom scan lines were interchanged, and it interfered with the computer's (IBM PC) ability to Warm Boot. Each card was given a percentage rating of how well it compared to the IBM Standard, and comments on whether or not the bugs in the original were fixed, or kept for compatibility reasons. Also, for less money, all of the clone cards came with the maximum 256KB of memory, while the IBM EGA only had 64KB standard, with the rest able to be added through a daughter card.

What most made me smile was that the IBM EGA card was included in the matrix of results, showing a rating of 100% compatibility with itself.

Validates better against the TRANSITIONAL spec (4, Interesting)

dominator (61418) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150084)

Speaking as an OOX implementer, this is pretty bad. But it's not quite as bad as the headline makes it seem - the meat of the story [griffinbrown.co.uk] is linked a few blogs deep:

The expectation is therefore that an MS Office 2007 document should be pretty close to valid according to the TRANSITIONAL schema.

Sure enough (again) the result is as expected: relatively few messages (84) are emitted and they are all of the same type.

<m:degHide m:val="on"/> where "val's" values are supposed to be "true|false".

[snip]

Making them conform to the TRANSITIONAL will require less of the same sort of surgery (since they're quite close to conformant as-is)


In other words, if you're validating against the TRANSITIONAL spec, the OOX documents aren't horribly far off. And it's wrong in such a way that's easy to compensate for in code (i.e. check for "true|on" for a truth value). That's a markedly different situation than described by the headline's "'somewhat less' with the transitional OOXML schema" claim.

And in case anyone claims that ODF doesn't have the same sort of problem, I refer you to AbiWord bug 11359 [abisource.com]/OpenOffice bug 64237 [openoffice.org]. This one is a show-stopper.

business as usual (1)

wizardforce (1005805) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150138)

It would be ironic if it were not completely expected. I think it would be interesting to see M$ try to spin this one, that at least one of two things must be true: 1) OOXML sucks 2) their software sucks because it can't even follow a standard they themselves created. Probably something along the lines of: "the standard is a significant improvement over Office 2007 which we will implement in our new version." or "We tried to make OOXML a great standard but our efforts were thwarted by outside forces" [in other words their new revisions]

122,000 errors... (1)

simonharvey (605068) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150172)

So as an indication of the evilness of OOXML (using the logic of the OP):

20MB of OOXML contain about 122,000 errors: Muhhaaaah!!!

therefore 50 mega bytes of OOXML contain approximately 250,000 errors: ... Muhhaaaahahhha!!!

continuing: 100 mega bytes of OOXML contain approximately 500,000 errors: ... Muhhaaaahahhhaahhhaaahahaaaaaaaha!!!

therefore, 200 mega bytes of OOXML contain approximately 1,000,000 errors: ... Muhhaaaahahhhaahhhaaahahahhhhhhaaaaahahahahahaahaahahaaaaha!!!

... now, this can't be since that's more errors that exist in the entire world.

So no, I don't really think that the reasoning is sound.

Oh for crying out loud! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#23150216)

Of course they don't conform. The version of OOXML used by Office 2007 today is an older version. Microsoft needs to release a patch for Office 2007 that creates documents that are ISO 29500 compliant. If they had released such a patch and the resulting documents were found to be non-conforming then there would be a story here. But as it is, without a patch, Office 2007 can only be expected to create documents that adhere to the version of OOXML that existed when Office 2007 was released back in 2006. Don't forget that ISO 29500 was only accepted as a standard less than a month ago.

hmmm... 122k errors (4, Interesting)

SlshSuxs (1089647) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150222)

After the first error, are the remaining errors meaningful (i.e. false positives)? I believe most errors after the first are false positives relative to the first error.

Let them know how you feel (1)

Gm4n (1139093) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150324)

We've all pretty much agreed that the standardization of OOXML sucks... why not let the ISO know [standardsinfo.net], instead of discussing amongst ourselves?

Curiousity (0)

Richard.g.k (1215362) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150400)

Why is it that microsofts format should conform to OOXML's test?

If it works suitably for microsofts purposes, why doesnt OOXML figure out how to be compatible with it if they want compatibility so bad?

I fail to see why people constantly rag on microsoft for not opening source/making every single product of theirs 100% compatible with open source.

Microsoft is a for profit business...there is not really any incentive for them to *spend money* to make it easier for people to move away from their office suite...

I cant stand the whiney open source people who seem to think that just because they want to do something one way that closed-source companies should adapt their business practices to meet them.

I dont really know a huge deal about the document formatting deal, but what i do know is that I've never had any problem with MS office in the years i've used it for everything from school, to work , to personal projects, so why should they change it to meet someone elses standards now?

Re:Curiousity (1)

Richard.g.k (1215362) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150466)

er...it seems i really have no clue what im talking about with this. What i'm trying to say is, if office plays fine with itself, why dont open-source developers conform to it, instead of expecting a for-profit company to pay to make themselves compatible with the competition

I smell the next fine approaching... (1)

AlgorithMan (937244) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150412)

so the ooxml specification they give to their competitors is extremely different from what mso2k7 reads/writes..... this means they intentionally give wrong interface-specifications to their competitors... I don't know how it is with you, but i smell the next fine > $1,000,000,000 by the EU approaching...

Consider this. (1)

MBC1977 (978793) | more than 5 years ago | (#23150606)

Hmmm, ok I'll look at it a slightly different way. If MS own application cannot meet MS's OOXML standard, then perhaps (going out on a limb here), just perhaps this is a viable standard. Before, penguins and chairs come my way here me out. We have a *cough* standard, that right now, nobody is meeting. So in other words, all parties involved (MS and everyone else) at least on the application side, are on equal footing. Has anyone tried (painful as it might sound) to write an application (or file format) that writes to MS (and now ISO's) standard? I mean a standard can't be a standard (at least as I see it) if nobody is using it (or attempting to).

I mean it wouldn't hurt to attempt make a bridge here, would it?
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