×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Microsoft's Office 365 For Government Heralds New Google Fight

Soulskill posted about 2 years ago | from the whether-the-bear-wins-or-the-fox-wins-the-rabbit-loses dept.

Microsoft 112

Nerval's Lobster writes "In a bid to expand the reach of its cloud services, Microsoft has introduced Office 365 for Government, which features the same cloud-based productivity tools as Office 365 but stores data in a segregated community cloud. Google and Microsoft have been locked in vicious battle over the past few years to score cloud contracts for government agencies. Microsoft hopes its support of standards such as ISO 27001, SAS70 Type II, HIPAA, FERPA, and FISMA will help to give it an edge in winning those contracts."

cancel ×
This is a preview of your comment

No Comment Title Entered

Anonymous Coward 1 minute ago

No Comment Entered

112 comments

I'm hoping for microsoft (0, Troll)

noh8rz3 (2593935) | about 2 years ago | (#40160245)

As a consultant who works with govt often, I really really hope that microsoft wins this battle. Right now all our document production is office based, and if we need to account for an entirely new office suite (google docs) then it's another magnitude of (nonbillable) complexity.

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (4, Interesting)

The MAZZTer (911996) | about 2 years ago | (#40160349)

As a consultant who works on projects for govt, I hate Office 2007 and it's "collaboration" features which are pretty much non-existant. I would love to use Google Docs but we cannot due to the proprietary nature of our work. I'm pretty sure there's an Enterprise edition of Docs that can run more locally but I work for a Big Company (TM) so getting such software is probably impossible. I'm just waiting for Office 2011, which I THINK they're rolling out on the new Win 7 machines. Still running XP personally.

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (-1, Troll)

noh8rz3 (2593935) | about 2 years ago | (#40160407)

yeah, office 2011 and win 7 are really powerful tools. not sure what you mean by the collaboration features. we use sharepoint for version control and track changes. The nightmare wrt google docs is writing a doc in word, passing it to google docs for somebody's editing, bouncing it back to word for other people's editing. all on the client side. The formatting would get so messed up!

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40160707)

Uh, office 2011 and win 7? Pretty tricky to run office 2011 on win 7...

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40160727)

Part of the insidious nature of lock-in is that there is a tendency of some users to see it as its own form of 'normal', with the more open options being the source of the pain or expected pain incident to breaking out of the lock-in.

Have you never considered that Google Docs can be edited in place and thus don't have to be passed around, or constantly uploaded and downloaded? Or that if one really insists on using a local editor, the standard-compliant ones virtually remove the iterative formatting errors incident to this kind of portability?

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (-1)

noh8rz3 (2593935) | about 2 years ago | (#40160807)

I agree with you that for simple uses the google docs is probably fine. but i'm in the ninja category, (hundred+ pages, tables, figs, headers, footnotes, track changes, comments), and this can't be duplicated in google docs, let alone bouncing files back and forth!

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (-1, Redundant)

hairyfeet (841228) | about 2 years ago | (#40161695)

THIS, this right here, is why I can't understand all the MS office hate. I give LO to my home users but would never think of giving it to my business customers or those with college students, why? because its simply not made for that use case!

Google docs and LO are fine and dandy if all you need to do is make some basic word docs. for that they are fine, great, not a problem in the least. But when you start messing with headers and footers and tables and embedded graphics and change tracking...they just suck! And why shouldn't they? Its not the use case it was designed for! it would be like bitching that economy car can't haul a boat, well duh! Its not made to! Oh and before someone pipes in with "herp derp use PDF" that is a good way to get an F in a class or have your work file 13ed friend, NOBODY takes PDF except printers.

So I honestly don't see why there is any argument here, its like arguing that a screwdriver and a wrench should be used interchangeably. if all you are doing is basic word processing with minimum formatting then frankly you shouldn't be using MS Office, you are just wasting your money when Google Docs or LO will do just as good. But if on the other hand you are dealing with large complex docs then you would be nuts NOT to use MS Office, because Google Docs and LO simply isn't designed for that use case. its really that simple.

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40163385)

You're talking about desktop publishing, which Word is completely shit at, especially if you have to collaborate with other people.

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40163355)

It must be a fucking nightmare using Word for that. Word is not a desktop publishing program. The first thing Word does when it opens a document is re-format it for the default printer. You can't stop it doing that with any amount of tables, widow-orphan control or anything else. I'm glad I don't have to collaborate with you, because you ain't no ninja, pal!

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (0)

Branciforte (2437662) | about 2 years ago | (#40164267)

I work at Google. We use Google Docs internally for everything, including long, complex design documents with tables, figures, headers, footnotes, change tracking, and comments. And equations and tables and scripting and a built-in research tool, and so on. And we can all work on documents simultaneously while watching each other make changes and respond to out-of-band comments and collaborate via Hangouts which are part of our VC system. Maybe you just don't know how to use Google Docs.

As for bouncing things back and forth, we don't have to. We collaborate all in one document. The only reason you have to bounce things back and forth is because Office doesn't have real collaboration. As for trying to convert back and forth between Office and Docs, yes that would suck, because Microsoft intentionally designed their system to not play well with others. In fact, they actively subvert any attempt to develop an open standard for documents.

Ninja???? (1)

AliasMarlowe (1042386) | about 2 years ago | (#40165751)

I agree with you that for simple uses the google docs is probably fine. but i'm in the ninja category, (hundred+ pages, tables, figs, headers, footnotes, track changes, comments), and this can't be duplicated in google docs, let alone bouncing files back and forth!

If you're using Word for 100+ page documents, you're likelier to be a time-waster than a Ninja. If those documents have much internal structure (10+ cross references per page), it's almost guaranteed. A real Ninja would use LaTeX.

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (5, Insightful)

ozmanjusri (601766) | about 2 years ago | (#40161287)

The nightmare wrt google docs is writing a doc in word, passing it to google docs for somebody's editing,

That's the nightmare for ANYONE trying to inter-operate with Microsoft.

And since it's the result of deliberate efforts by Microsoft to fight open standards, it should result in them being banned from government tenders.

http://www.adjb.net/post/Microsoft-Fails-the-Standards-Test.aspx [adjb.net]
http://www.consortiuminfo.org/standardsblog/index.php?topic=20051116124417686 [consortiuminfo.org]
http://blogs.computerworlduk.com/open-enterprise/2012/04/1how-microsoft-fought-true-open-standards-i/index.htm [computerworlduk.com]

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40161817)

Oh go away you Google shill, you post this rubbish in every discussion. You know damn well that nothing stops you from using these tools to produce rich text documents in formats everyone can read through the use of the built in ODF format capabilities or through 3rd party ODF plugins if you feel the native implementation doesn't cut it for whatever reason.

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40162881)

Your purple squeezed-up butt-hurt little face is amusing, but don't forget to take a breath occasionally.

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (4, Insightful)

PCM2 (4486) | about 2 years ago | (#40160545)

As a consultant who works on projects for govt, I hate Office 2007 and it's "collaboration" features which are pretty much non-existant.

You mean your clients haven't paid for the collaboration capabilities. With the right version of the suite, it offers both Groove-based collaboration and collaboration via SharePoint Server. In fact, all Office 365 really offers in this department is a hosted instance of SharePoint, but you still have to set it up how you want it. Funny thing about electronic collaboration tools, though -- if nobody else is going to use them, then there's no point in you using them, either.

I'm just waiting for Office 2011, which I THINK they're rolling out on the new Win 7 machines.

Office 2011 is a Mac version. You mean either Office 2010 or the version that will be coming Any Day Now.

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (2)

hawguy (1600213) | about 2 years ago | (#40162085)

As a consultant who works on projects for govt, I hate Office 2007 and it's "collaboration" features which are pretty much non-existant.

You mean your clients haven't paid for the collaboration capabilities. With the right version of the suite, it offers both Groove-based collaboration and collaboration via SharePoint Server. In fact, all Office 365 really offers in this department is a hosted instance of SharePoint, but you still have to set it up how you want it. Funny thing about electronic collaboration tools, though -- if nobody else is going to use them, then there's no point in you using them, either.

What is this Sharepoint based collaboration? When our Sharepoint admin said we were going to get collaboration for Office Docs via Sharepoint, I assumed it was live sharing like Google Docs, where multiple people could edit documents simultaneously, but what it turned out to be is a version control system - one person can check out and edit the doc while others can only get a read-only copy until that person checks it in.

Our admin said this is way Office collaboration works. Maybe I've been spoiled by Google, but is it true that Office collaboration in Sharepoint is just a version control system?

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (1)

Inda (580031) | about 2 years ago | (#40164439)

I can't tell you what version of Sharepoint we're using on Office 2007, but it's been nothing but poor version control since 2003, but now with added workflow! UserX has finished work on the document, would you like to...

Collaboration means employing someone to cut and paste all the sections and chapters into a 500 page report*.

Neat!

*I know master documents can be used. I even created a fully working template for this company. If only the rest of the non-tech workers could remember how styles work - there are only a dozen in my template *facepalm*. The style for numbered bullets is named "Numbered bullets" ffs. It was trashed very early on.

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40161119)

I find it interesting that the parent said almost exactly the same thing you did, but chose MS's side rather than Google's. He got downvoted, you got upvoted.

I hate MS more than most around here, but this censorship by the trol^w mods needs to end.

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (1)

cavreader (1903280) | about 2 years ago | (#40161431)

I would make one small recommendation which is to replace "hate" and "love" with "useful" and "non-useful" as it relates to your particular needs. "Love" and "Hate" often means those who decide what system or technology to use are going to use without even bothering looking at any alternatives they have seen software described using the word "hate". There are pluses and minuses to all software technology today and you are better served making an in-depth examination of all your choices before start labeling something using descriptions such as "hate". You personally might already do this type of review but there are still a lot of knuckleheads out there that read these types of descriptions and then ignore any alternative systems out of hand.

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (3, Insightful)

Sez Zero (586611) | about 2 years ago | (#40160389)

Yes, because using a different program to read and write a Microsoft .doc is so utterly complex we all might as well give up.

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (-1)

noh8rz3 (2593935) | about 2 years ago | (#40160423)

well, you're exactly right. if your word file is a grocery list, then it doesn't matter if its .txt, .docx, or whatever. But when your files start to get extraordinarily complex (hundred+ pages, tables, figs, headers, footnotes, track changes, comments), then translating from .docx to something else will be a mess and you might as well give up.

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (5, Insightful)

Dcnjoe60 (682885) | about 2 years ago | (#40160447)

well, you're exactly right. if your word file is a grocery list, then it doesn't matter if its .txt, .docx, or whatever. But when your files start to get extraordinarily complex (hundred+ pages, tables, figs, headers, footnotes, track changes, comments), then translating from .docx to something else will be a mess and you might as well give up.

Maybe that's the strongest reason for them not to be in proprietary formats.

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40160717)

Maybe that's the strongest reason for them not to be in proprietary formats.

Agreed. It amazes me how eager so many businesses in this country are content to allow something so important to be forever chained to another company's software and standards.

I realize that not everyone can afford to design their own software from the ground up, but there exist open standards, and the lack of adoption in the community at large doesn't seem logical to me. You'd think everyone would want their data to at least have archival copies in non-proprietary formats just in case. I know I would if I were making these sorts of decisions.

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (0)

noh8rz3 (2593935) | about 2 years ago | (#40160725)

again, you're absolutely right. It would be awesome if somebody made an open format where all these complex features would be 100% portable. in the meantime, my firm bills by the hour, and I have a fixed budget. so every hour my team spends futzing with formatting is an hour we dont spend on actual work. so for this reason i mandate office 2007 / 2010 for all participants.

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (1)

funkyjam (2651365) | about 2 years ago | (#40161925)

Exactly, we need a standard format kind of like HTML for web pages. Once we have that then every tool for editing those documents will render everything exactly the same and all our problems will be solved! I know we had some problems with browsers, but it's gonna be different with document editing software, I swear.

HTML is NOT for making things look the same (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40164523)

Since your web browser may be displaying 1000 pixels wide and mine 800 pixels wide, displaying them exactly the same is impossible.

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (-1)

hairyfeet (841228) | about 2 years ago | (#40163609)

Watch me get downmodded and see if I care...what format EXACTLY are you speaking of? its not ODT as I've seen it seriously crap on complicated layouts so its not that, PDF is a read only format so no go, what's left? RTF?

Its all nice to claim everyone should use "open standards' but if those standards don't do the job you need, what then? Does everyone expect the world to just stop doing whatever it is they need to do until someone comes up with one?

Like it or not for large complex documents MS Word seems to be the only one to handle the truly complex in a user friendly format. You can't honestly expect everyone to learn how to write in LaTeX, which is just SLIGHTLY more friendly than handing someone today a PC running DOS 2, although frankly with all the "perception bubbles" around here I honestly wouldn't be surprised if all the uber nerds here honestly expect everyone to jump through flaming hoops learning LaTeX rather than simply use what is easiest.

It IS ODT. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40164625)

And if you find something it goes "seriously crap" on you can :

1) Try a different method of achieving the goal (you don't get good results from using Frontpage workflows on Office documents)
2) Raise this with the ODF board
3) Find out why you want to do this, since the ODF standards board had a score of different groups working on what the format needs to do.

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (1)

Mabhatter (126906) | about 2 years ago | (#40162509)

Technically if you are doing THAT much formatting you should be using Pagemaker or LaTex. That is what journals and print houses use... MS Word is just a fancier toy compared to those.

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (0)

noh8rz3 (2593935) | about 2 years ago | (#40163155)

that's the rub, isn't it. I'm not an editor or formatter. I'm a content creator. My goal is to spend 99% of my time creating content and 1% of my time editing. Word is a great tool for content creators. pagemaker is a great tool for editors. latex is a great tool for... grad students?

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (1)

Anarchduke (1551707) | about 2 years ago | (#40163769)

If you are only spending 1% of the time editing the content you create, I shudder to think of how bad your content must suck.

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (1)

noh8rz3 (2593935) | about 2 years ago | (#40165873)

Don't be obtuse. I mean copy editing and layout. The kind of stuff you pay somebody $20/hr to do, and in a year or two will farm out piecemeal.

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (2)

poetmatt (793785) | about 2 years ago | (#40160469)

You'd be surprised how easily people learn google docs vs office. It's a matter of magnitudes difference in how easy it is to teach people google docs, not to mention that so many more people have gmail than hotmail it's just making life easier.

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40160609)

More people have hotmail than any other email provider...

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (1)

JazzLad (935151) | about 2 years ago | (#40162831)

Just an anecdote, but everyone I know with a Hotmail account has had it forever & just uses it as a spam account now. In other words, numbers aren't everything.

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (0)

noh8rz3 (2593935) | about 2 years ago | (#40160759)

my comment isn't about the simple-use cases which admittedly are 50%+ of all users. But when your files start to get extraordinarily complex (hundred+ pages, tables, figs, headers, footnotes, track changes, comments), then it's not just a matter of teaching google docs vs. office. also, umm, at 99% of workplaces they don't use google gmail, they use outlook. so using office is making life easier.

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (4, Insightful)

Dcnjoe60 (682885) | about 2 years ago | (#40160495)

As a consultant who works with govt often, I really really hope that microsoft wins this battle. Right now all our document production is office based, and if we need to account for an entirely new office suite (google docs) then it's another magnitude of (nonbillable) complexity.

If I understand what you are saying, it is to keep using a broken system, because fixing it is too much of a pain. I would normally expect to hear that from politicians, but not the consultants themselves.

What I would like to see is the government demand open formats so that they aren't locked in to any one vendor's product because the conversion cost of the documents themselves is too high.

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (1)

noh8rz3 (2593935) | about 2 years ago | (#40160777)

again, you're absolutely right. the system is broken, and it would be awesome if somebody else fixed it. in the meantime, my firm bills by the hour, and I have a fixed budget. so every hour my team spends futzing with formatting is an hour we dont spend on actual work. so for this reason i mandate office 2007 / 2010 for all participants.

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (1)

geek (5680) | about 2 years ago | (#40160895)

You should be fired for propagating the problem instead of solving it.

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (1)

noh8rz3 (2593935) | about 2 years ago | (#40160953)

no, i should be promoted for focusing on business opportunities rather than wasting energy on things that don't provide revenue. someone else can solve this problem.

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40163111)

no, i should be promoted for focusing on business opportunities rather than wasting energy on things that don't provide revenue. someone else can solve this problem.

To paraphrase into different context: i should be promoted for cheaply dumping the toxic sludge in the river rather than figuring out how to clean it and render it safely inert. Since the government won't regulate this and is bought and paid for by companies like mine, nyah-nyah I'll see you all dead while I'm gasping my last breath.

Winning!

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (1)

Anarchduke (1551707) | about 2 years ago | (#40163785)

Or you could find an actual working solution then you won't have to waste your valuable time limping along with a broken system. And I've used word long enough that if your people are using word for 8 hours a day, I can almost guarantee they are futzing around trying to keep word from futzing their formatting over.

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (1)

noh8rz3 (2593935) | about 2 years ago | (#40165901)

We _have_ a working solution. It's not perfect, but it's our best option given the costs of switching. Somebody else can solve the world's ills I.e. lack of word processor interoperability.

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (0)

noh8rz3 (2593935) | about 2 years ago | (#40160695)

wow, I'm not sure how I could be modded down -1 redundant when I have fp! moderation fail. lash out much?

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (1)

s.petry (762400) | about 2 years ago | (#40161849)

Probably because you keep repeating the same thing in every reply. Maybe you need to understand what redundant means?

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (1)

noh8rz3 (2593935) | about 2 years ago | (#40161935)

yes, my replies have been a little redundant because people keep making branching comment sub-threads on the same sub-topics. But my first post isn't redundant! see, I do know what rudundant means...

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (1)

Anarchduke (1551707) | about 2 years ago | (#40163793)

and yet you are surprised you were down-voted for being redundant. too bad there isn't a -1 dumb-ass option.

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (1)

cpu6502 (1960974) | about 2 years ago | (#40160867)

Why is the first post modded -1 redundant?
Stupid moderators.

Re:I'm hoping for microsoft (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40162115)

Why is the first post modded -1 redundant? Stupid moderators.

It's pro-Microsoft...duh. I'm surprised there's not a raft of posts calling him a "shill". In fact the first response seems to be pretty much the same but in favor of Google instead, but that gets modded (as of now) +4 while the OP is "Troll".

FIPS (4, Insightful)

Dr. Tom (23206) | about 2 years ago | (#40160271)

I like how FIPS-140 isn't mentioned as a supported standard.
Yeah, use our cloud, it's probably secure.

Re:FIPS (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40160749)

FIPS140 is a stupid standard. I had to help a client "downgrade" to a FIPS validated 3DES library vs. an AES one that wasn't FIPS. Yes...lots of people who attempt to build their own crypto suck at it because they don't know their math, but still how many cloud providers are trying to create their own crypto?

Re:FIPS (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40161389)

Microsoft Windows has built-in FIPS validated cryptographic libraries since Windows 2000 Service Pack 2. I'm certain they meet that requirement. I know of numerous software companies that build off those libraries so that their application meets FIPS requirements for government agencies.

At least it won't happen here (3, Interesting)

Gonoff (88518) | about 2 years ago | (#40160333)

I am in the UK and anything based in the USA, or controlled by US companies is by default insecure.

Sorry guys but anything your spooks think they can get away with fooling around with is not suitable for anything remotely confidential. That won't stop some crook who happens to work stealing it, as happened in NZ but we have to at least try.

And that is before we get into your commercial 'confidentiality' practices...

Perhaps you guys might consider offshoring your secure storage to somewhere with some decent Information Governance regulations.

Re:At least it won't happen here (4, Informative)

tlhIngan (30335) | about 2 years ago | (#40160503)

I am in the UK and anything based in the USA, or controlled by US companies is by default insecure.

Sorry guys but anything your spooks think they can get away with fooling around with is not suitable for anything remotely confidential. That won't stop some crook who happens to work stealing it, as happened in NZ but we have to at least try.

And that is before we get into your commercial 'confidentiality' practices...

Perhaps you guys might consider offshoring your secure storage to somewhere with some decent Information Governance regulations.

Actually, that's why Microsoft created the private cloud version of Office365 (the "for Government" part). Right now, if any country chooses it, there's no guarantee where data is stored. It was one egg-in-face moment when Microsoft announced that Google doesn't guarantee your data is stored locally, then realized the same applied to it.

This is an attempt to rectify that - letting and ensuring that data is stored where you want it to be stored.

It's a big problem because yes, any data stored on a US machine is subject ot US laws, where even Canadian companies dealing with the Harper Government have to ensure that the data doesn't leave Canadian soil (yes, storing on a US server counts).

It's one of those more obvious errors about the cloud and government that you'd think the cloud providers would've thought of...

Re:At least it won't happen here (2)

recoiledsnake (879048) | about 2 years ago | (#40163085)

> It was one egg-in-face moment when Microsoft announced that Google doesn't guarantee your data is stored locally, then realized the same applied to it.

You can stay off the cloud with Microsoft Office and run your own Sharepoint, Exchange for collaboration. Google doesn't offer such a solution. So I don't know what's the egg-in-face about it.

Re:At least it won't happen here (1)

beamin (23709) | about 2 years ago | (#40160885)

You can bet it won't be to a country whose cops are working for Rupert Murdoch.

Re:At least it won't happen here (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40161379)

Any data entering UK borders can be intercepted without any warrants and the such so any cloud services must be stored within the UK along side other security measures such as the obvious encryption.

Re:At least it won't happen here (1)

cavreader (1903280) | about 2 years ago | (#40161591)

Just storing something that requires outside internet access and data storage is insecure compared against storing data locally. If you think all US developed software is insecure you are free to build your own system, nothing is stopping you. And what the hell has the UK developed that even comes close to US software companies like Apple and MS?

Re:At least it won't happen here (0)

s.petry (762400) | about 2 years ago | (#40161721)

What you point at in the UK is the same thing we in the US point at when dealing with "Cloud". No matter what the vendor says, when the data is not stored locally there is a huge amount of risk.

One of the reasons I ended up leaving my last employer was that they were insistent on allowing foreigners (India/China) access US controlled data. The amount of time spent trying to find loopholes, lobby congress for law changes, and trying to convince people it was a "great idea!" was disgusting.

I don't think many people have issues with Government stuff being self contained and "SAFE" from foreign hands. This means Egypt's data stays in Egypt, US in the US, Canada in Canada, etc... The few that do are the same dirt bags that have been running our countries in to the ground, or the tagnuts that follow them around.

Not to mention... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40160363)

Not to mention that Microsoft has a whole swath of loyal purchasing manager drones in GS who will required umpteen forms, each filled out in triplicate, to even consider a non-MS product. By a simple path of least resistance, MS will win out in sheer numbers.

Re:Not to mention... (1)

CodeReign (2426810) | about 2 years ago | (#40163781)

This is the truth. Here in Canada (well Quebec), there was a court battle where a Linux based company sued and won a case against the municipal government for not accepting or considering their contract offer in accordance with the legislation of that area. The city felt it would just be easiest to go with MS and not ever consider the alternatives.

Seriously? (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40160397)

Microsoft hopes its support of standards such as ISO 27001, SAS70 Type II, HIPAA, FERPA, and FISMA will help to give it an edge in winning those contracts.

*laughs* Okay, seriously, you made half of those up, didn't you?

Hey, guys, look at my cloud app stuff! I'm compliant with ISO 8675309, TRS-80, THX 1138, HAL 9000, HERPY, DERPA, NIMROD, OSHA, FERMI, and CERN! Hee hee!

Re:Seriously? (2)

DaCurryman (1116593) | about 2 years ago | (#40161145)

Sadly, in my line of work, I actually work with each one of those acronyms. Although SAS70 has been replaced by SOC 1/2/3.

Re:Seriously? (2)

colinrichardday (768814) | about 2 years ago | (#40162793)

HIPAA Health Insurance Portability and Accountabiliy Act http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HIPAA [wikipedia.org]

FERPA Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/FERPA [wikipedia.org]

FISMA Federal Information Security Management Act http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/FISMA [wikipedia.org]

ISO 27001 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ISO_27001 [wikipedia.org]

SAS70 Statement on Accounting Standards No. 70 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SAS70 [wikipedia.org]

Re:Seriously? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40165911)

Any now I'm ROTFL compliant. :)

Too little alphabet soup too late? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40160441)

It's still competitive but this horse may have already let the stable...
Neither are the greatest option and both have problems. Still not sure outsourcing all this stuff to a vendor is the best decision, esp. not with the data of the people of the United States!

It's like the captcha's are psychic - unprimed.

Standards? (4, Funny)

MikeMacK (788889) | about 2 years ago | (#40160463)

Hmmm...yes, because Microsoft is all about standards compliance...

Re:Standards? (1)

wvmarle (1070040) | about 2 years ago | (#40161951)

Hey it gets us less dependent on the host OS, as everything is run in the browser. And that's a good thing, isn't it? This assuming Office365 is not IE-only of course. I know that's probably a stretch though... even though IE is getting more standards compliant than ever.

Re:Standards? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40162987)

Yeah you stupid fucking cock troll. Google is one thousand times worse at standards compliance than MS.

A quick hint for Google (2, Insightful)

jmerlin (1010641) | about 2 years ago | (#40160589)

Guaranteed victory: don't massively change the interface of your applications for business users without giving them the ability to keep the present version, especially when those changes dramatically change functionality or usability (in case you didn't get the reference, see gmail).

It may be a simple request, but Microsoft is absolutely OWNING you in this realm, it's called consistency and stability. They've done office productivity software for a long time and they got this one right (don't like Ribbon + other bad UI choices?, keep using 2003, and here's a service pack that makes 2003 work with 2007 files!). Learn from them. The cost of re-training thousands of employees because they're used to using software version 1.0 after you FORCE them to upgrade to 1.0.0.0.1b with fancy new UI is more than enough to justify never using your products, ever again.

Most accurate and appropriate video ever, and a precisely why Office 365 threatens Google at all: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k4EbCkotKPU [youtube.com] .

Re:A quick hint for Google (1)

cpu6502 (1960974) | about 2 years ago | (#40160809)

>>> keep using 2003, and here's a service pack that makes 2003 work with 2007 files!)

And what if someone sends me a 2010 file? In that case I have no choice but to upgrade to the new Office with its shitty ribbon interface (where I can never find the function I want).

Re:A quick hint for Google (1)

s.petry (762400) | about 2 years ago | (#40161953)

The funny thing is, the guy claims MS is consistent and stable. Then talks about how you have to get service packs just to work between versions, and he completely omits the Ribbon fuck up that is preventing most companies from migrating to newer versions of Office.

At a place I recently worked, it was estimated that converting 10,000 users to new office would require well over a million dollars in training and additional head count to support users, in addition to MS licensing and not counting productivity lost. Many small companies have already dumped MS for either Open/Libre or Google.

Sure looks like a Shill to me!

Re:A quick hint for Google (2)

Rockoon (1252108) | about 2 years ago | (#40163345)

I understand if they dumped Microsoft Office for OpenOffice or LibreOffice, but its simply insane to migrate to Google Docs under a justification that "retraining is expensive"

At least with the former, you can continue running an old version if training costs to roll out a new version are too high. With Google Docs, you are quite literally *forced* to upgrade on Googles timetable.

The person that looks like the shill is you.

Re:A quick hint for Google (1)

jmerlin (1010641) | about 2 years ago | (#40163407)

What part of not being required to upgrade Office did you not understand? Good luck preventing Google from updating your apps.

"they got this one right" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40161127)

Why is it that so many businesses (incl. govt. agencies) insist on using "office productivity software" for almost anything involving computers, even for tasks that would be vastly better suited to other software tools? It sometimes seems that MS Office has dumbed-down the entire world into using their computers ineffectively.

A few examples (all seen in real life):
1. PHB-type doesn't use email, instead dictates memos to secretary who types them as Word documents and emails them company-wide as attachments.
2. Personnel schedule gets made as Excel spreadsheet for printing and distribution in paper form. The file itself lives only on the departmental secretary's hard drive.
3. "Database" of information on individual patients consisting of a Word doc for each person, organized by date of initial encounter, and with the person's SSN as the file name (e.g. "C:\PATIENTS\2009\APRIL\987654321.doc"). No, I'm not making this up.
4. Nearly any use of MS Access instead of a real database (although Access would be better than example #3).

Don't get me wrong - it isn't always this bad by any means, but there is still a tremendous amount of brain-dead computer use rampant in the workplace. It seems like folks are determined to use their computers as nothing more than typewriters with internal storage.

Re:"they got this one right" (1)

jmerlin (1010641) | about 2 years ago | (#40161401)

I wouldn't say that's Microsoft's fault, more the fault of IT departments and users trying to overload their knowledge in a poor manner, resulting in the abuse of technologies. Instead of looking for an answer to a technical need, they just say "just throw it in an Excel spreadsheet, we can do that, right?"

Re:"they got this one right" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40162187)

Yes they should lock down the tools and eliminate flexibility to make it idiot-proof. You could just as easily to all that you suggest in any other office suite.

Office 365 is a joke (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40160831)

Office 365 is one of the biggest examples of how Microsoft doesn't "get it" when it comes to new products. On it's own it's just a thin office-like web app that doesn't offer anything near a full-fat office experience. It can pick up that missing functionality.. If you already have a full install of office on the machine you're working on, and you're willing to uses proprietary IE-only extensions. If you're thinking right now. "What the fuck is the point of that?" Then you're not alone.

It's just another attempt to wedge another new concept in to their old-line products of windows and office. Microsoft is culturally, and technically completely unable to move beyond windows+office and office 365 is a glaring example of just that. It's also pretty clear that Microsoft considers the only valid method of collaborative document management is sharepoint. (Which is a notoriously addictive and treacherous suite that is the definition of vendor-lockin)

Once you remove the weird web-to-local-office-install-via-IE-extensions.. Thing. There's really no reason you should not use it instead of Google docs. Literally none.

My company is implimenting O365 now (0)

gabrieltss (64078) | about 2 years ago | (#40161019)

What a piece of cr@pola! All I can say is I HATE Office 2010 - I hate that god awful ribbon bar. I can't find ANYTHING with it. Outlook (in the cloud) is like a Yo-Yo - It's up, it's down, it's up, it's down. And MS Lync - please! It's just a rolled over version of MS Communicator.

Re:My company is implimenting O365 now (1)

jader3rd (2222716) | about 2 years ago | (#40161253)

I hate that god awful ribbon bar. I can't find ANYTHING with it.

Every time when I run into someone having the same experience as you, I ask what they're doing and they're always trying to insert something (object, table, picture, link). So I then advise them that since they're trying to insert something, they should click on the insert tab. Solves their problem %100 of the time.

If you're mentally thinking to yourself that you want to insert something, and there's an insert tab/menu item. I sugest clicking on it.

Re:My company is implimenting O365 now (1)

s.petry (762400) | about 2 years ago | (#40162087)

Which is fine until you realize how much is not in the tabs at all, or that you have to add tabs to perform basic actions, or how when you perform certain actions the icons in the tabs will change so "fishing" is not always simple. It's very left handed to perform many common tasks, and the constant tab switching is extremely unproductive.

The other horrid feature is the text preview. Go ahead and select-all in a 10 page doc then try and change the font with preview in default mode. Come back in 20 minutes after your HD burns out caching all the fonts.

Re:My company is implimenting O365 now (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40163915)

So, I want to change the author's name on a document... I am looking for the "Change" tab.

Re:My company is implimenting O365 now (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40161301)

If you can't find things on the ribbon, then I suggest staying away from any sharp or point objects you could hurt yourself.

The ribbon is about as easy as it gets.

Re:My company is implimenting O365 now (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40162437)

What a piece of cr@pola! All I can say is I HATE Office 2010 - I hate that god awful ribbon bar. I can't find ANYTHING with it.

Translation: I hate everything that's different and can't adapt to change, I can't find anything if it's not where it used to be.
If we lived in a world that run by people like you there would never be any innovation and we would all be just doing everything in the same way for fear of change!

Re:My company is implimenting O365 now (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40163211)

What a piece of cr@pola! All I can say is I HATE Office 2010 - I hate that god awful ribbon bar. I can't find ANYTHING with it.

Translation: I hate everything that's different and can't adapt to change, I can't find anything if it's not where it used to be. If we lived in a world that run by people like you there would never be any innovation and we would all be just doing everything in the same way for fear of change!

And yet, you won't leave behind yesterday's closed file formats, and use ODF?

Re:My company is implimenting O365 now (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40162841)

Yo Dog. SUP? Ya know, Lync is the name of the NEXT version of Communicator. Just a name CHANge. Ya-a-mean? Check this... ifts too much fo you, you culd just keep werkin on your shitty standup routine.

I look forward to the localization movement (1)

Dan667 (564390) | about 2 years ago | (#40161323)

right after all the money is made moving everyone to mainframes ... uh, I mean the cloud, I expect we will see a new movement to move everything back to local environments. Everyone totally remembers all the problems with mainframes, right?

Re:I look forward to the localization movement (1)

TheDarkMaster (1292526) | about 2 years ago | (#40164969)

Everyone totally remembers all the problems with mainframes, right?

Yep, I work with one and I have to to make an PHP application interact with it.

HIPAA ... Really? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40162173)

There really is no 'certification' for HIPAA... or no set of concrete measurable points...
(But I do like this summary [nchica.org] .)

So if anybody claims 'support' for HIPAA, they are either lying, or...

They are willing to sign a Business Associate Agreement: http://www.hhs.gov/ocr/privacy/hipaa/understanding/coveredentities/businessassociates.html [hhs.gov] ...and assume some legal liability for PHI breaches.

Almost no big business will step into this nightmare (and I've asked Google and Microsoft both)... they both offer their Services As-Is with regards to HIPAA, and leave it to the customer to determine if the application they provide is compliant.

Ribbon and Metro are pathetic failures (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40162707)

The Ribbon is a UI failure just like Metro. This pathetic company never could design a UI.

Re:Ribbon and Metro are pathetic failures (1)

jmerlin (1010641) | about 2 years ago | (#40163351)

And yet you don't have to use either.

When Google updates their apps and destroys usability in a similar manner to conform to the retardation of some moronic "new-school" UX designer who just wants to change things around to make it his own while simultaneously throwing over a decade of UX experience and user studies through the window, you have absolutely zero fucking choice on whether you want to upgrade or not. This fundamentally makes Google Apps a non-starter for businesses.

The FAA is switching to Micrososft Office 365 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40163571)

Although I can't find a public article stating this I know that the FAA is switching from Lotus Notes to the Micrososft Office 365 cloud solution. I don't know anyone in the FAA who likes Lotus Notes, so switching to an email system that will integrate with the other Microsoft products in use will be a significant improvement for all FAA employees.

A contract was awarded to a company to work with Microsoft and the FAA to implement the new email system. This was just announced this month.

Load More Comments
Slashdot Account

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>
Sign up for Slashdot Newsletters
Create a Slashdot Account

Loading...