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ISO Approves OOXML

kdawson posted more than 5 years ago | from the looks-like-no-joke dept.

Microsoft 435

sTeF writes in, with the hope that this is an April Fools joke. Doesn't look like it though. An article up at Intellectual Property Watch claims they have obtained a document (PDF) enumerating the vote after Microsoft's OOXML won ISO standard status.

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Support Needed. (5, Insightful)

gnutoo (1154137) | more than 5 years ago | (#22935884)

Microsofts statement hailed the appearance of extremely broad support for the standard at the end of the ISO voting process.

Broad? I think they mispelled bold faced fraud.

Re:Support Needed. (2, Funny)

mrbluze (1034940) | more than 5 years ago | (#22935908)

Broad? I think they mispelled bold faced fraud.
Or maybe they won the support by supplying extremely broad broads, or something similarly corrupt.

Re:Support Needed. (5, Funny)

ShieldW0lf (601553) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936370)

ISO... ISO... aren't they that defunct organization in Switzerland, the one that used to represent standards before they got into the advertising business and disappeared?

Re:Support Needed. (2, Insightful)

Zymergy (803632) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936372)

No, No, its not that random. They have an ISO standard for it!
-They use the "ISO Standard" for the voting and selection procedures as implemented by the International Olympic Committee: http://www.google.com/search?num=50&hl=en&safe=off&q=International+Olympic+Committee+corruption&btnG=Search [google.com]

Re:Support Needed. (5, Interesting)

Xiph (723935) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936426)

Lets wait for the announcement tomorrow, ISO is deliberately avoiding an Aprils Fool announcement, which could mean that it might be of a more serious nature.
Of course if the serious nature of the announcement is approving OOXML, I'll be sending them some emails telling them what a disgrace the process has been.

It might not change anything, but I encourage anyone with the ability to send email to do something similar.

Don't panic. (-1, Troll)

inTheLoo (1255256) | more than 5 years ago | (#22935916)

ISO has yet to formally disgrace themselves. It might not really happen.

Re:Don't panic. (0)

Macthorpe (960048) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936042)

Yet another shill from Twitter.

Carry on, everyone.

krostokrotos! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#22935976)

bovalox!

smegmadon!

Re:Support Needed. (5, Funny)

nuzak (959558) | more than 5 years ago | (#22935994)

> I think they mispelled bold faced fraud.

Perhaps their OOXML formatters have problems with boldface, and that's just how it rendered.

Re:Support Needed. (2, Insightful)

gnutoo (1154137) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936198)

Problems? That's what digital restrictions are for!

Re:Support Needed. (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#22936170)

No, they misspelled bribe.

Re:Support Needed. (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#22936242)

ISO takes pride in seeking consensus. To compare sentiment does anyone have an overview of voting results for other standards? How many opposed ODF when it was approved? How does it compare to other standards within the same area or votes for ISO-standards in general?

Its true (5, Funny)

javilon (99157) | more than 6 years ago | (#22936570)

Even the KDE foundation voted [kde.org] for it !!!

OT - Re:Its true (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22936628)

;)

I'll be glad when today is over. Shitty day to have mod points.

wow that is so funny (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#22935896)

But it isn't funny to make BSD is dead jokes ? i don't get it.

Do they not know their own rules? (5, Informative)

Adaptux (1235736) | more than 5 years ago | (#22935898)

While I still have some doubts regarding the genuineness of this document (for example, why does it purport to come from the ISO Central Secretariat rather than from the ISO/IEC "Information Technology Task Force" (ITTF) which has been managing the voting process?), the document seems to accurately reflect the previously available information regarding the voting decisions of the national standardization bodies.

However, how valid are those votes? For example, the ISO/IEC JTC1 directives seem to pretty explicitly forbid changing the vote from "disapprove" to "abstain" like AFNOR (the French standardization organization) did [adaptux.com] (under the influence of heavy lobbying from Microsoft and HP [groklaw.net] ).

Abandon All Hope (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#22935904)

Ye Who Code This Standard!

Re:Abandon All Hope (1)

JonathanR (852748) | more than 6 years ago | (#22936660)

Cue persistent formal requests to MS for specification details regarding "auto space like Word 95" et al. It's obviously the first step on the road to litigation/anti-trust cases.

oh yea (3, Funny)

play with my balls (1253180) | more than 5 years ago | (#22935912)

I'd let the ISO nestle it's balls in my mouth.

Here come Barbra... (4, Interesting)

Naughty Bob (1004174) | more than 5 years ago | (#22935928)

I think we all expected MSFT's chicanery to work in the short-term.

But witness that recent brand-awareness survey- As understanding of the computer world seeps into mainstream conciousness, MSFT's rotten practices are coming back to haunt them.

Let's hope that the mainstream media picks up on the insanely obvious corruption involved here, and the Streisand Effect kicks in.

I don't think this is the best outcome for open/free standards, but it should still be viewed as a win, long-term.

Re:Here come Barbra... (1)

freedumb2000 (966222) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936002)

Let's hope that the mainstream media picks up on the insanely obvious corruption involved here, and the Streisand Effect kicks in.
Let me make a prediction: they won't. Please, let this be an Aprils fools joke.

Re:Here come Barbra... (1)

Zeinfeld (263942) | more than 6 years ago | (#22936658)

I think we need a standard for Slashdot dupe elimination. Admittedly the first story purported to be a leak but so is this, surely this is at most an update to the previous story?

Vader (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#22935936)

NOOOOOOOOOO!!!

Re:Vader (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22936620)

No, it's a good thing for Vader. It means he won't have to dodge any flying chairs next time he meets his boss.

Thank God (5, Funny)

Mateo_LeFou (859634) | more than 5 years ago | (#22935940)

I've had so many clients asking if I can scrape data from their legacy lockinware. Now I can confidently say "Yes" and bill them for the 1400 hours it takes to read this spec.

Thank you MS!

Good Luck. (5, Interesting)

inTheLoo (1255256) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936096)

You are right about the size of the market but wrong about how much money it will make you and what tools to use. Sun and IBM will give you PDF of ODF output and a handy database system to keep it all. So can anyone else with Open Office. Some people are going to be automating the process better than others but it's going to be a competitive market. That's the whole point of standards, to avoid the massive cost of reinventing what should be obvious and spend resources on things people actually want. MSXML is going nowhere in a market like that.

Re:Good Luck. (1)

willyhill (965620) | more than 6 years ago | (#22936526)

It's actually OOXML, not MSXML. MSXML is a COM-based XML parser.

I actually do agree with your opinion on why standards exist and what they do to competition. I also think Microsoft's actions in regards to ISO are reprehensible. But given your obviously non-biased [slashdot.org] opinion (posted with one of your five sockpuppets [slashdot.org] ) on how markets should work, at least in regards to IBM, I wouldn't try and set the rules for other companies, either.

Re:Good Luck. (1)

dedazo (737510) | more than 6 years ago | (#22936624)

Any minute now twitter, gnutoo, Mactrope and Erris are going to show up on this thread to correct you [slashdot.org] , and then inTheLoo will complain about their moderation, and so on. Well, you get the idea.

Good. Now at least we know where the filth is (5, Insightful)

unity100 (970058) | more than 5 years ago | (#22935944)

and what to avoid. and no, im not a bigoted fanboi of any camp - im just reflecting upon the series of stunts ms pulled to get that format validated. judging from the level they lowered themselves in dirty work to get this through with bribing and manipulating, i'd say that their format has to be total crap. else it wouldnt need that level of filthy campaigning.

Re:Good. Now at least we know where the filth is (3, Funny)

loafula (1080631) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936050)

so, basically microsoft is like hillary clinton?

Basically, what they just did (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#22935972)

was to retroactively standardize 20 years of legacy document formats. All MS-OOXML really is is a forwards-compatible XML serialization of the Microsoft Office 2003 formats.

And yes, many at Microsoft do consider the whole standardization process to be a sham. (I know, because I work there.)

Re:Basically, what they just did (4, Interesting)

eerok (1033124) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936456)

"All MS-OOXML really is is a forwards-compatible XML serialization of the Microsoft Office 2003 formats."

In other words it's not an open document format due to all the legacy proprietary crap it embodies. Thanks, but we knew that already.

Actually, all MS did was make a joke out of the process of establishing standards. That's okay, the world can take a joke. But it holds grudges.

ISO death bell (5, Insightful)

mugnyte (203225) | more than 5 years ago | (#22935984)

And with that - the "standards body" of ISO was effectively taken down. FUD shovelers everywhere will begin the slow, purposeful targeting of Government, school and corporations to use MS's products for long-term archival concepts.

  Perhaps with only gnashing of teeth from the geek side, initially. After some time, say 3 or 4 product cycles, MS's formats, content and programs will have slipped into breaking changes - with various patches, pieces, conversion tools and sunsets. Then and only then, will the true colors of MS's saletroopers, who overrule the tech side, be shown. But you know this - why else would you be trawling the /. comments down here?

  In other news, the business of writing code to munge data from old MS formats into new MS formats is alive and well. Programmers rejoice! There is an endless market of chagrined middle managers who are willing to port old crap to new crap for good $/hour.

Re:ISO death bell (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#22936066)

LOL. You clearly have no understanding of the ISO. They're responsible for thousands of standards in a wide variety of industries. Even if people ignored their computer-related standards, few would notice. The ISO is mostly known for their manufacturing process and quality control standards.

Re:ISO death bell (1)

Akaihiryuu (786040) | more than 6 years ago | (#22936554)

Maybe so...but if this is true noone will ever trust any of their computer-related "standards" again.

Re:ISO death bell (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22936600)

They didn't anyway - ISO are the jokers that gave us the ridiculously baroque and unused 7-layer network model that many a 90s undergrad was made learn by rote. ISO are the ones that decimalised "megabyte" (arguably correctly - but came up with the ridiculous-sounding "mebi" alternative. ISO have always been of dubious relevance in the computing industry (until Microsoft bought them too, ECMA were much more relevant). The real relevant force in computing is the IETF. Now, that standards process still works, despite microsoft's active involvement.

Re:ISO death bell (1)

Akaihiryuu (786040) | more than 6 years ago | (#22936642)

Interesting. This means I can now forget about their "megabyte" definitions and insist that one MB is 1024K and one GB is 1024MB, as it should be.

Weirdest April 1st Ever! (4, Insightful)

darkfnord23 (696608) | more than 5 years ago | (#22935996)

Assuming it's not a joke... Anyone using this standard for anything deserves a punch in the face.

Re:Weirdest April 1st Ever! (5, Interesting)

codemachine (245871) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936402)

The fools are those at ISO who voted to approve this horrid "standard". It definitely wasn't good enough to be fast-tracked, let alone made into a standard.

Should be interesting to see the next moves from IBM and Sun though. Could there be some sort of challenge or appeal coming? I don't think we've seen the end of this.

pyhrric (5, Interesting)

apodyopsis (1048476) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936018)

Its the Pyhrric victory to end all.

(1) if they lost the ISO process then they lost

(2) they won the ISO process then they lost as it forced a deep examination of the standard, and raised critical questions and caused them more problems then it solved.

(3) if nobody else implements this flawed standard then they lose as some Goverments are now also specifying cross platform implementation as well as open standard (perhaps in response to this mess)

(4) if (and this is real unlikely) there are other implementations of this standard (eg OO) then they lose as MS Office is no longer required to be ubiquitous on the desktop

This is NOT really a win for MS the way that I see it. They can spin this how they want and surely get away with it for a large amount of the population - but big business and govermental contracts (where the real money is) are already looking for an escape from propietry formats and have been for a while.

I'm really fucked off about the perversion of the ISO system, the bad practice, the lack of any "technology morals" in decisions that needed to be unbiased. But I am not that upset about OOXML being passed - I really do not think MS has won this one.

The important thing to watch now is how MS spins this and where the important money goes (big contracts, goverment).

Re:pyhrric (5, Informative)

holloway (46404) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936202)

I agree. We're back to where we were a year ago only now with a lot more awareness of the office monopoly and how much money is wasted [holloway.co.nz] .

Here are two reports on OOXML that I recently released, one (PDF, 0.9MB) [iso-vote.com] and two (PDF, 0.8MB) [iso-vote.com] .

Re:pyhrric (1)

earbenT (992594) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936226)

No, it's really just business as usual. Regardless of which format wins out, Microsoft will simply embrace and extend it in order to maintain its Windows and Office monopolies (separating the two would be redundant if it weren't for the fact that Office is also on Macs).

Re:pyhrric (1)

pembo13 (770295) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936232)

OpenOffice is already adding support. I don't know why.

Re:pyhrric (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#22936492)

It's part of Microsoft's master plan to force OpenOffice to become a big, bloated, unmaintainable blob of code.

Agree - easy solution too (4, Interesting)

cheros (223479) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936240)

I think the best approach to this is to:

(a) Require MS to be true to their own standard (or immediately fall foul of anti-monopoly rules - hello EU)
(b) Ensure every procurement decision in favour of MS because of this to REQUIRE to implement MSOOXML as well. No point using it for criteria otherwise.

That way I give it a month before reality hits. And less than that for the EU to collar the b*stards again, and this time it won't be a baby fine because that has proven not to have too much of an effect. A cute punishment would be making ODF compliance mandatory in the EU. Given that they haven't implemented a proper filter this may completely nuke the franchise. And without the Office franchise there isn't much left of MS because brute forcing people into an upgrade to something as bad as Vista hasn't exactly worked out too well. Couple that with sub prime problems and companies as well as end users may start to seek for more economic ways to spend their money.

This story is FAR from over.

Re:Agree - easy solution too (1)

apodyopsis (1048476) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936350)

A cute punishment would be making ODF compliance mandatory in the EU.


Oh sir! that really is a cute concept. And I think it will appeal to our very own guardian angel and wielder of the sword of justice Neelie Kroes.

Re:Agree - easy solution too (3, Insightful)

earbenT (992594) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936362)

And without the Office franchise there isn't much left of MS because brute forcing people into an upgrade to something as bad as Vista hasn't exactly worked out too well.
Microsoft still has DirectX to lure the gaming market back to Windows.

Re:pyhrric (2, Interesting)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936256)

(3) if nobody else implements this flawed standard then they lose as some Goverments are now also specifying cross platform implementation as well as open standard (perhaps in response to this mess)


Open source developers will likely shoot themselves in the foot there. OOXML support is already under way for OO.org, and you can be sure that KOffice will likely follow, along with a number of other open source office apps. These will be similar to the efforts to get the Office 97-2003 formats working, seeing as the specs, even once decrypted, will only get you so far. It won't be good enough for these apps to be drop-in replacements, and even if it is, Microsoft will be recreating OOXML with every new release, so it will be the same old game of catch up. Even worse, Microsoft might even all-but-abandon OOXML, leaving it in as a legacy format, but defaulting to some new document format.

Re:pyhrric (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22936534)

It's not really OOXML support, it's Microsoft Office 2007 support. The OpenOffice.org support includes things that MS didn't submit to Ecma or the ISO like OLE, VBScript Conversion, etc.

So it's the same old story about reverse engineering Microsoft Office, not implementing a poorly defined inconsistent "standard".

Re:pyhrric (1)

poot_rootbeer (188613) | more than 6 years ago | (#22936598)

Microsoft will be recreating OOXML with every new release, so it will be the same old game of catch up.

Wouldn't Microsoft have to either:
a) submit and get approved revisions to the ISO OOXML standard, or
b) deviate intentionally from the established ISO OOXML standard
in order to keep up their old routines?

.doc attachments (2, Insightful)

csk_1975 (721546) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936020)

The referenced comments from the NBs are .doc files. If ISO mandates the use of MS Word .doc files is its existing internal processes what hope that anything other this result?

Is the tag part of the ISO approved spec?

ISO replacement (1)

Akaihiryuu (786040) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936496)

If this is indeed true (and not an April Fools joke), then ISO's time is gone, as they have proven that they are no longer a standards body and instead are "open to the highest bidder". This means a replacement is needed. I propose something run by the community (preferably involving the Free Software Foundation)...this would kind of be a return to the days when standards were formed by posting RFC's on websites.

But if this is true, then no reputable organization will ever seek ISO approval for a standard again.

Re:ISO replacement (1)

Wiseman1024 (993899) | more than 6 years ago | (#22936644)

You can say that again. If this is actually true, I'll never ever care for whatever crap ISO pulls out of its ass, endorse ISO standards, and bother to use them unless I'm already doing, and of course, should I ever need a standards organization, it won't be ISO. I don't have that kind of money, and I don't like to have to do something Microsoft's pestilent corruption scheme. ISO can rot for all I care.

Finally (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#22936022)

Well, it may not be the greatest schema - but it at least will help to push IT organizations to finally upgrade to the nicer newer versions of Office.

Really - the set of applications that well over 90% of U.S. businesses use is going to be denied standardization!?!?! I don't think so.

This is a big interop win for everyone!

Re:Finally (4, Interesting)

Bryansix (761547) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936134)

Yikes. I like Office 2007 but it is a pain in the ass to teach people to use. Banners? Really? No File Menu? WTF MATE!!! Believe me, Open Office is going to get my vote when it comes time to upgrade here.

Re:Finally (1)

dhavleak (912889) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936320)

Office 2007 but it is a pain in the ass to teach people to use.... Open Office is going to get my vote when it comes time to upgrade here.
I would think the ribbon is a lot easier to teach than telling people when they need to use Save As, and when they don't etc. and which file-format to pick under Save As etc.

Re:Finally (1)

Bryansix (761547) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936404)

It should be but I still get retard strong mother f-ers who send me .dotx file which cannot be opened even if you have the office compatability pack for Office 2003 Pro. Why they try to email me a template is beyond comprehension but they still find a way to do it.

Re:Finally (1)

Akaihiryuu (786040) | more than 6 years ago | (#22936532)

I reply with "uh...what the heck did you just send me? Please send me that in a standard format like .odf" Even though I CAN use .doc files thanks to OpenOffice, I never advertise this fact. This reply will not change no matter what the entity formerly known as ISO says.

Umm (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#22936034)

So? Go outside. Try talking to a woman that is not your mom.

Why no April Fools Today. (4, Insightful)

Foobar of Borg (690622) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936054)

There is no April Fools today since the real news is comical enough (though in a tragically funny sort of way).

Re:Why no April Fools Today. (4, Funny)

Dr. Eggman (932300) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936118)

But, there is an April Fools joke today on Slashdot! It's just subtle. Check your 'Foes' list and you'll see every editor has been added to it.

Re:Why no April Fools Today. (1)

nuzak (959558) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936274)

You made me look. You're a bad man. Or egg. Or eggman. Goo goo ga joob.

Re:Why no April Fools Today. (1)

tomson (100060) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936374)

Wish I had mod points :) Only joke I fell for today!

From the box of Office 14 (3, Insightful)

Tatsh (893946) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936060)

* Microsoft's own Open Office XML (OOXML) format is now an ISO standard. This means anyone with software capable of reading OOXML can can read your documents.

Translation:
* Whilst OOXML is an ISO standard now, we still own the patents and the right to sue anyone who implements it (even if we issued a covenant not to sue; covenants mean nothing to Microsoft, just to let you know). Lastly, OOXML is open however we are only ones who know how to read the blob (binary) parts of the standard perfectly and no one else can.

Internal document at Microsoft:
* Finally we have an ISO and ECMA standard, just so we can say to you that we care about the future of digital documents, when we really just want more money. Saying OOXML is an ISO standard is a great way to have businesses automatically approve of our standard. And now we can put ODF and its hopes and dreams in the dark.
---
I am very disappointed in ISO, OSI, and ECMA. I held them with high regard, until they started approving standards and licences of a company that has been holding back the PC industry all to make a little more money. I will ignore the three bodies for now, until they withdraw their positions on these Microsoft entities.

When will MIPS-based-CPU desktops running Linux at high speeds (much faster than any x86 at the same clocked speed) take over the home PC market? x86 and even x86-64 are dying faster than we can count in my opinion the way things are going.
---
(Written on Gentoo Linux 2.6.24.3 AMD64, Mozilla Firefox 2.0.13, KDE 3.5.8)

Re:From the box of Office 14 (0)

earbenT (992594) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936280)

When will MIPS-based-CPU desktops running Linux at high speeds (much faster than any x86 at the same clocked speed) take over the home PC market? x86 and even x86-64 are dying faster than we can count in my opinion the way things are going.
MIPS is deader than a doornail, and considering Intel's new efforts in the ultramobile and high-end graphics markets, x86 isn't going anywhere for a very long time.

Re:From the box of Office 14 (1)

Tatsh (893946) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936352)

Sorry. What I meant to say was RISC-based PowerPC CPUs. They got to become cheap enough again to the point at which every PC is using them. Every current generation console (except PS3 which still uses an architecture similar to PowerPC) uses PowerPC or MIPS (ARM too). There must be a good reason for this.

Does anybody else... (5, Interesting)

$RANDOMLUSER (804576) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936132)

...find it ironic that the document describing OOXML's ISO adoption is in PDF format?

Re:Does anybody else... (4, Funny)

Creepy Crawler (680178) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936180)

That is because Microsoft's implementation is not 100% OOXML compatible.

Re:Does anybody else... (1)

Tatsh (893946) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936186)

PDF is an open standard by the way...

but does anybody find it ironic that the comment links in the PDF are in DOC format?

Re:Does anybody else... (1)

$RANDOMLUSER (804576) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936334)

PDF is an open standard by the way...
So is OOXML. Says so right on the label.

/tongue firmly in cheek

Re:Does anybody else... (1)

Tatsh (893946) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936474)

Yes, but most people actually wanted PDF to become an ISO standard. Adobe embraces the idea, and have since created a lot of competition against themselves, but they are willing to take this risk. So many people still think Acrobat is the only programme to produce PDFs, but there are so many out there, many are free, many are freeware, and many are FOSS (dvi2pdf and ps2pdf, for example). There is nothing bad about PDF in my opinion. Looking at blogs and documents, it looks like there was not any fiddling with the voting process. Today, I see more readers than just Adobe's and they run on every OS imaginable.

On the other hand, Microsoft is not willing to take this risk. They have purposely not changed anything in the format which was requested and this whole process was corrupted. We all know. That is how Microsoft operates. I am not saying 'Die MS Office forever' and I am not even saying 'Release the source or you're evil' like RMS. I am simply saying Microsoft should support real standards (ODF, a practical one, even PDF export in Word without a 3rd party plug-in), embrace having competition to compete against. They have had virtually none since they got their hands on DOS. Even if Intel could (and maybe it can), I am not sure it would buy out AMD simply because competition means motivation to progress (Adobe certainly knows this, stating in its own PDF format blog that you 'may still need to pay money to use quality [PDF creation] software'). Microsoft does not progress; it spits out the same thing every few years with 'new features' that nobody needs (Vista, Office 2007, even XP, etc). And what was their response to programme incompatibility? Something in an attempt to kill Java (.NET). There is no end to this 'kill all competition by all means necessary' attitude of Microsoft. I think Microsoft is scared to death about free software making it anywhere.

I'm glad that OpenOffice (and KOffice has plans to) supports reading and writing OOXML and all but I'm sure the implementation is not completely done yet. I also do not think the implementation can legally be entirely GPL/LGPL either. Personally, I write most of my documents, whether it be lab reports or research papers for English, in LaTeX, and generate DVIs and PDFs. If the teacher wants a digital copy I send a PDF. This is what makes PDF so great. I do not have to worry that their Office is going to say 'whoops, this binary piece was written wrong, display it wrong' when I do export in Writer, etc.

I must... (1)

corychristison (951993) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936136)

... still be hung over (t'was a bad night to have a few drinks with the guys - totally forgot it as 4/1)

The only thing running through my mind is:

what.

the.

hell?

April Fools? (1)

Techman83 (949264) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936172)

FTFA:

1 April 2008A

Office Open XML Officially Approved As International Standard
Hmmm

Re:April Fools? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22936580)

What if the whole OOXML thing is a big joke, with the punchline delivered on the optimum day?
No, life can't be that good.

Possible Tags? (1)

Bryansix (761547) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936182)

corruption, fraud, sellouts, themorethingschangethemoretheystaythesame, hopeitisajoke, itsatrap, Micro$oft$ucks, OOXMLisafraud, confusedvoters, bureaucraticbungling, flipfloppers ... I could go on.

Re:Possible Tags? (2, Funny)

teh moges (875080) | more than 6 years ago | (#22936662)

omgponieslikeinoffice97 ?

Isn't It Ironic? (1)

Skeetskeetskeet (906997) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936200)

The day a rigged vote for OOXML passes as standard just happens to be April Fool's Day. Looks like the joke is on Ballmer and Gates, because the entire IT community knows the standard was approved under suspicious conditions and that they would rejoice over it makes them lower than a chad on a Florida voting room floor.

This just follows... (1)

msauve (701917) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936278)

in the path of other well respected and used ISO IT standards, like OSI and CMIP.

Tag: sadly!aprilfools (1)

slimjim8094 (941042) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936286)

:(
I hate it when Microsoft makes things its bitch. And I liked the ISO, too...

why a standard is needed (1)

poot_rootbeer (188613) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936324)

I noticed that some of the links in the PDF document do not work, presumably because the file has been re-hosted on a third party's server.

I bet this would not have happened if ISO had distributed the memorandum in an ISO-approved document format.

Re:why a standard is needed (1)

BoChen456 (1099463) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936464)

Wrong, ODF does the same thing. Really, what do you expect the links to do when the original docs are NOT available yet?

Re:why a standard is needed (1)

poot_rootbeer (188613) | more than 6 years ago | (#22936616)

Really, what do you expect the links to do when the original docs are NOT available yet?

The parent document should not validate.

good (-1, Troll)

prockcore (543967) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936326)

that will at least put an end to the tiresome hissy fit half of slashdot puts up whenever ooxml is mentioned.

Re:good (2, Insightful)

rtb61 (674572) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936488)

Me thinks you have very little under standing of fractions, I'm getting more like 9/10 of /. is opposed to the corruption of ISO by M$ and the creation of a totally pointless unusable unstandard. When you have read and memorised a 6000 page standard, then you can come back and comment on it's value.

Standards should be as brief, accurate and stable as possible, in order to be able to cost effectively apply them. This is just a sickening M$=B$ marketing exercise.

At least in Australia it looks like OOXML is dead http://www.standards.org.au/downloads/080331_Aust_maintains_abstain_position_on_OOXML.pdf [standards.org.au] as it has been rejected by the Australian Government.

Re:good (2, Insightful)

prockcore (543967) | more than 6 years ago | (#22936540)

Using "M$" instead of Microsoft makes you look like a seething idiot.

I don't like this idea (2, Interesting)

failedlogic (627314) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936366)

Of all (or most) of the reasons for not liking the MS OOXL file, I oppose it the most because what if 5 or 10 years down the road with a new Office version, they decide to change the format. With this supposed "standard" we might all have to convert our documents. Locking your work in this format is also bad news if you want to retrieve it later. At least the folks at Wordperfect were kind enough to not have changed the format since the 5.x release.

I've decided to use LaTeX to make a final copy of my documents in PDF format after writing up the document w/o markup in Text or RTF document. I'm new to using it, but the markup for most of my purposes is as easy as HTML (I don't use tables or math very much). Its too bad others don't know how easy it is (esp. with templates you can download).

Some of my files are 10 years old and I've archived them all pretty well. But if I use a current version of Word to open it up, the formatting is all screwy. All the more reason to change.

Re:I don't like this idea (1)

BoChen456 (1099463) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936486)

the markup for most of my purposes is as easy as HTML ... Its too bad others don't know how easy it is
I think you need to go out into the real world some time and check out what percentage of people thinks HTML is easy (or even know what it is for that matter).

Re:I don't like this idea (1)

Creepy Crawler (680178) | more than 6 years ago | (#22936638)

HTML is a mess.

The tags are simple enough, its the side effects of what browser you're viewing them on, and then how printing on that platform works.

I like PS and LaTeX myself, but good luck getting them as a standard. They should be though.

Re:I don't like this idea (1)

Akaihiryuu (786040) | more than 6 years ago | (#22936594)

I for one will be keeping my documents in a *standard* format...ODF. So I won't have to convert any of my documents. Anyone that gets suckered in by M$ deserves what they get.

I need enlightenment... (2, Interesting)

v(*_*)vvvv (233078) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936390)

Doesn't the old cliche of "the great thing about standards is there are so many to choose from" apply here? Or does this mean a ton of people will now be forced to use it and Microsoft will reap the benefits?

Sorry, but every article I read about OOXML is about the voting and standardization irregularities, and nothing I've found reviews OOXML from the users standpoint, or implications of it being ISO-ed...

Apparently money can buy everything (1)

Foofoobar (318279) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936410)

And this after buying votes, bullying people and several miscounts and rewriting of the rules. They finally got their way... I mean won by a broad margin.

Fix the headline, please (2, Informative)

Eggplant62 (120514) | more than 5 years ago | (#22936430)

Interesting headline you have there. I think it should read:

Microsoft buys ISO certification; World looks on with drool on its face

Chilling possilbilities... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22936550)

Assuming that this is not an April Fool's joke... then I'm honestly pessimistic about the future of more than merely the IT industry. When a single company can subvert the very standards that governments require to interoperate... it simply does not bode well. How long will it be before a country -- one that cannot afford the M$ tax -- decides to go with another vendor's implementation of M$XML? Ambiguity in communiques between international bodies are bad enough without semi-interoperable standards increasing the likelihood that something gets misinterpreted. It is a matter of time before this unavoidable semi-interoperability costs a nation dearly - be it in blood or gold.

Promote OOffice (1)

guignome (860672) | more than 6 years ago | (#22936556)

I put a Get OpenOffice [openoffice.org] button on my website. That may not be much but still too many people use m$ word just because they don't know ooffice exists. So a marketing campaign can help the same way it did for firefox.

Re:Promote OOffice (1)

Mista2 (1093071) | more than 6 years ago | (#22936676)

I always wondered why someone like dell who put so much crapware on their retail desktops couldn't include OpenOffice for free? I'd just love to see some letter or contract to get out saying "I will accept money to install this software on all new devices sold, as long as we don't also include xxxxxx software, DIV-X codecs and ogg/vorbis support."

Word beats all else (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22936588)

You guys are so far up your own butts that you are being choked by your own sphincter. I was the lead developer on a competing word processor for 3 1/2 years. I have seen all of the crappy also-rans under a microscope and I must say: "Word rocks." You act like this is some kind of favor to Microsoft. You bitch when they do not disclose their proprietary formats, so why bitch now? You are the same people who think that acrobat is usable, and that Java is an open standard. Retards, all of you.

Now that it is a standard .. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22936614)

we will have to wait for ECMA to 'correct' it to match what Microsoft has actually implemented, or wait for Microsoft to implement the actual standard.

Or perhaps they won't bother to do either of those, after all 'Office is the standard' and if other applications can't do everything as Office does it then that is their problem.

Use the standard (0)

Iamthecheese (1264298) | more than 6 years ago | (#22936640)

I may be missing something here, but now that it's a standard, can't we just automate the transfer of information to the non-Microsoft parts of the standard and move on? A document can fit the OOXML standard without any MS quirks at all. Just let MS keep pretending to be standard and code OOXML documents to a real standard. Then in OOXML version 2, MS can keep up or again be non-standard in every sense of the word.

End of ISO? (4, Interesting)

Ilgaz (86384) | more than 6 years ago | (#22936668)

See the story:
  An article up at Intellectual Property Watch claims they have obtained a document (PDF)

See the article linked is "PDF"? Why? It is supported on everything down to Symbian S60 handsets and any open source software can support it. People can even race with vendors "reader" software making better ones. That is a real standard which won its place without dirty tricks.

I bet usual suspects like Novell and their mighty Mono/Silverlight innovator Icaza will come up with a thing that supports it to some extent, advertise it and MS will use it as a proof.

Last question: Did gnome people openly critised this decision? On their website?

April 1 could be the end of ISO. Once you lose credibility, you don't get it back. It is not a April 1 joke either. You can even feel that one of the biggest IT scandals is waiting and this time it is not poor open source geeks anymore, it is IBM/Sun and GNU/BSD and various World governments especially those very rich ones who can even say "no" to EU. Don't forget the militaries either.

"Zardoz has fallen!!!!!" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22936674)

Remember that scene in Zardoz? (Sean Conery rocked in that movie!)
It's that same feeling.
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