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Novell Releases OO–OOXML Translator 157

Posted by kdawson
from the biting-the-hand dept.
Tookis writes in with news that Novell has released an Office Open XML (OOXML) translator for OpenOffice.org. The article argues that, though this move may represent a nail in the coffin of the franchise known as Microsoft Office, and therefore a Good Thing, what is truly needed is a fully supported Evolution on Windows.
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Novell Releases OO–OOXML Translator

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  • hmm (Score:3, Insightful)

    by heyyou_overhere (1070428) on Tuesday March 06, 2007 @01:56AM (#18246970)
    I think the article is confusing larger memory usage with greater efficiency.
    • by guruevi (827432)
      Currently running Office 2007 at work here, only Outlook, Word and SharePoint Designer open uses already near 300MB for these programs alone (not including OS or any supporting daemons).
    • Apart from the good news of an OOXML translator for OpenOffice.org, that was a terrible article!

      It seems the author is a noob who is only just putting his toe in the water with a first install of OOo. After anouncing the news of the translator, he then starts rambling on about Evolution on windows, whatever.

      Who said it was the goal of the open-source community to crush Microsoft??! While it may be true that many in open-source folk don't like Microsoft, I think it would be more accurate to say that the

  • by Whiney Mac Fanboy (963289) <whineymacfanboy@gmail.com> on Tuesday March 06, 2007 @01:57AM (#18246976) Homepage Journal
    what is truly needed is a fully supported Evolution on Windows.

    How about an (ABI compatable) Exchange-equivilant for linux?
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by julesh (229690)
      Isn't that what SuSE OpenExchange is?
    • How about actual documentation for Evolution. It assumes you already know your local network settings, and provides no or almost no clues on how to actually look up your settings from a live MS Outlook client so you can switch over, or what is necessary on the Exchange server end to support its use.

      Of course, with the recent patent deals with Microsoft, expect Novell to cooperate a lot more in supporting Microsoft's closed source, proprietary tools, and MS-violated standards.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 06, 2007 @02:04AM (#18247000)
    I believe the yearly revenue for Microsoft Office is about 15 billion which is about one third of the total revenue Microsoft makes every year. Correct me if I'm off. Over the past five years or so Microsoft's stock has been essentially stagnant. And Microsoft has had to make huge cuts over many of the preceding quarters to hit their street expectations and keep the stock from tanking.

    Even a modest hit to the Microsoft Office revenue due to the upgrade treadmill from the format lock-in would have a massive effect on the company. Over the years Microsoft used their rapidly growing stock to keep salaries down and attract people with the lure of huge gains from their option grants. If office software revenue starts falling and Microsoft exec options start turning worthless I think you will start to see dramatic cuts at the company - the multi-billion dollar Xbox fiasco, the Zune mess, and many of the other let's throw money at new markets to try to get the stock moving attempts that Ballmer and others have tried since the stock peaked back around 2000.

    I have to imagine that Microsoft will fight this move to open office formats with a fury never seen before. This isn't just extra billions that Microsoft won't miss, it is the multi-million dollar retirement money for a whole lot of execs up in Redmond under direct assault by a bunch of dirty hippies.

    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by SnprBoB86 (576143)
      "I have to imagine that Microsoft will fight this move to open office formats with a fury never seen before"

      You'd imagine wrong. Microsoft is fullly supporting this because they have opted for a more traditional (and ethical) approach to competing in this generation of office suites: simply having a superior product. Office 2007 is leaps and bounds easier and more plesant to use than Office 2003 and it produces prettier results to boot. Let's not even talk about how Office 2007 compares to OO.o....
      • by killjoe (766577) on Tuesday March 06, 2007 @03:28AM (#18247338)
        So why doesn't office support OO documents then?
        • by SnprBoB86 (576143) on Tuesday March 06, 2007 @04:07AM (#18247520) Homepage
          There is plenty of good information on motivation, etc. here: http://blogs.msdn.com/brian_jones/default.aspx [msdn.com]

          A great summary of arguments can be in this post: http://blogs.msdn.com/brian_jones/archive/2006/09/ 21/interoperability-of-the-office-open-xml-formats .aspx [msdn.com]

          Reguarding your particular question, that post states:

          "If you look at my blog, I probably spend less than 5% of my time discussing ODF. The only reason I talk about it is that people have asked me why we didn't use it as our default format. A simple "it wouldn't work" answer obviously isn't good enough, so I had to show specific examples to help explain my view."

          In this post: http://blogs.msdn.com/brian_jones/archive/2006/07/ 27/679703.aspx [msdn.com]
          Brian lists a whole bunch of examples of why it "wouldn't work" with references to previous posts with more details:

          "
          The OASIS ODF technical committee claims it's still over a year away from defining spreadsheet functions [msdn.com] and tables in presentations [msdn.com], and no mention of solutions to the international numbering issues [msdn.com] or even simple things like character highlighting [msdn.com].
          "

          • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

            by killjoe (766577)
            You think anybody buys that "it wouldn't work" argument?

            OO can save as doc but not one person at MS is smart enough to make word save a document as OO xml.

            • by Reality Master 201 (578873) on Tuesday March 06, 2007 @08:29AM (#18248466) Journal
              That's a good point. Some dudes at sun with a bunch of schlubs in their underwear at home can
              figure out the various office formats and save their docs to them. Why can't MS work that out
              • Schlubs (Score:4, Insightful)

                by Savage-Rabbit (308260) on Tuesday March 06, 2007 @09:33AM (#18248794)

                That's a good point. Some dudes at sun with a bunch of schlubs in their underwear at home can
                figure out the various office formats and save their docs to them. Why can't MS work that out
                What kind of an animal is a 'schlub'? And why is it's preferred habitat the underwear of dudes@Sun.com? Perhaps the whole problem could be solved by breeding some more shlubs and setting them free in the underwear of dudes@Microsoft.com?
                • Sorry; I'd written my post for native speakers of English, who are able to speak the
                  sentence with proper intonation, such that the indented reading is clear.
                  • by BobPaul (710574) *

                    Sorry; I'd written my post for native speakers of English, who are able to speak the sentence with proper intonation, such that the indented reading is clear.
                    Translation: "Because English is my native language, I'm excused from understanding how commas work. Therefore, you're an idiot."

                    Oh, and double points for the lacking a sense of humor. Congrats!
                    • I understand perfectly well how commas work. I also understand how native speakers of
                      a language can take a potentially ambiguous orthographic representation and determine
                      the proper reading from it by use of pragmatic factors, world knowledge, and an understanding
                      of intonational features that would be present in a spoken rendering of said sentence.

                      Finally, there's nothing wrong with my sense of humor; I just didn't find the post funny.
                • A 'schlub' is usually a person regarded as clumsy, stupid, or unattractive. It is an old yiddish or polish word meaning a blockhead, a yokel, or a boor. http://dictionary.reference.com/search?q=zhlob
              • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

                by jank1887 (815982)
                Why can't MS work that out.

                They can. They don't need to. Next question.

          • I love his blog comment about compatibility:

            If the goal is to guarantee perfect fidelity with the existing base of Microsoft Office documents (which would be implied by the "billions of documents" statement), then there is still a long way to go.
            Why are they so strict in wanting "perfect fidelity" for a conversion to ODF when you don't even get perfect fidelity upgrading from one version of Office to the next?
      • by drgonzo59 (747139)
        The best thing Microsoft can do is to crack down on all those illegal copies of Office. I dream of the imaginary day when Microsoft will issue an update that will disable invalid copies of Windows and Office. That will be the day when OO will start shinning. Not because it is a better product but because it will simply appear in the spotlight as everyone will rush to find a replacement. Most people will just have to deal with OO's problems, but 1 out of 10,000 new users might be a developer and eventually d
        • by bmo (77928)
          "The best thing Microsoft can do is to crack down on all those illegal copies of Office."

          Despite what Steve Ballmer bellowed lately there is no "11" on the knob for WGA and OGA. Indeed it is not likely for anyone at Microsoft to even paint an "11" on the WGA/OGA knob. That's because they view copyright infringement as a way to lock out competitors. As Bill Gates said in 1998, about the Chinese being the largest copyright infringers: "As long as they are going to steal it, we want them to steal ours. They
        • by ajs318 (655362) <sd_resp2@NOSPam.earthshod.co.uk> on Tuesday March 06, 2007 @06:15AM (#18247986)
          Oh, come on. If Microsoft had clamped down on illegal copies of MS Office, then alternative office suites costing one tenth of the price of MS Office would have taken over already by now. Microsoft Office has become the industry standard because, to all intents and purposes, it's free. So people learn word processing (using spaces for formatting) and spreadsheets (using a calculator to add up figures) in their own time using a pirated copy of Office, then businesses have to pay for Office because that's what all their staff know. And people who work in businesses where Office is used get a pirate copy to use at home, because that's what they know from work. It's a vicious circle.

          Imagine a small company, Mom + Pop Software Ltd. They manufacture someting called Cheap Office. It can't boast all the features of MS Office, but it has most of the ones people actually use. (It also defaults to A4 paper, so your printer won't insist for you to press the "paper" button after printing each page.) So it's ideal for writing everyday letters, doing accounts and keeping track of your CD collection, and it retails at £50. Now, our hypothetical customer John Thomas (who has letters to write, accounts to do and a CD collection to keep track of) sees Cheap Office and figures he could save £450 by buying it instead of MS Office. But then he figures he could pirate MS Office and save £500. If enough people do that, Mom + Pop Software Ltd. go out of business, due to piracy -- even though nobody has ever pirated a Mom + Pop product!

          This is how Microsoft have traditionally killed off the competition. But unfortunately, Open Source software isn't susceptible to the same technique. If people aren't making heavy use of OpenOffice.org, nobody has lost anything. In fact it could give the developers time to move on and produce something different. (Watch that dark horse KOffice, too. It isn't even pretending to be like MS Office -- which could well turn out to be its salvation.) I'm sort of reminded of an episode of King of the Hill, in which the kid starts kicking people in the bollocks and grows to think he's unstoppable ..... till he finds himself up against his own mother!
      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by jkrise (535370)
        a superior product. Office 2007 is leaps and bounds easier and more plesant to use than Office 2003 and it produces prettier results to boot. Let's not even talk about how Office 2007 compares to OO.o....

        Having used word processors for more than 15 years, I can confidently say that there is nothing prettier than Office 95, insofar as word-processing is concerned. The mail client (LookOut) is total crap, and has been so since it first launched.

        Users don't waste time making documents pretty; they use word p
      • by johnw (3725)

        Office 2007 is leaps and bounds easier and more plesant to use than Office 2003
        ...as long as you don't mind writing all your e-mails in French [theregister.co.uk].
    • by Jessta (666101)
      dirty hippies aka. Employees of Sun Microsystems and Novell.
      Open Office might be Free software but that doesn't mean dirty hippies are involved.

  • Visionaries (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Deadbolt (102078) on Tuesday March 06, 2007 @02:04AM (#18247002)
    It's really comforting to know that there are such men as this -- such utter, bigbrained geniuses who deign to drop us mortals a few crumbs of the great bread of awesome.

    Sarcasm aside: I am sick to death of people going, "I want this for my computer, therefore everybody else wants it too, and therefore the only rational course is what I say." Have you considered asking the users what they wanted? Instead of assuming that "the users" want "full-featured desktop apps", do you think it might be worthwhile to check with them if that's true? Maybe they're already using gmail and love it. Maybe they don't even know about Google Calendar. Maybe they haven't ever heard of Zimbra.

    Why should I, as J. Random Developer, bust my hump porting Evolution to Windows (which I couldn't do anyway as I know zip about Windows programming) just because this clown says what's good for him is good for everyone else?
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Goalie_Ca (584234)
      This MS blogger [msdn.com] seems to think differently as well.

      From the blog:

      If we ever were really in a war, it's now over, and both sides are winners.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        If we ever were really in a war,

        WTF? That (MS) blogger is on crack.

        Not only was it a war, it's a dirty war that's not over yet.

        We've had accusations of corruption [siliconvalleysleuth.com] for State official's daring to consider ODF, Microsoft paying people for favorable wikipedia edits [macdailynews.com], Alleged attempts by IBM to influence OOXML standardisation process, etc etc etc.

        It's not over yet folks. There's billions of dollars at stake. Of course its a war, of course its a dirty war.
    • by jez9999 (618189)
      Why should I, as J. Random Developer, bust my hump porting Evolution to Windows (which I couldn't do anyway as I know zip about Windows programming) just because this clown says what's good for him is good for everyone else?

      Too right; the writer of TFA sounds like a moron.

      I can almost hear the Linux crowd jumping up and down screaming: "Move over to Linux and you can have it all - OpenOffice.org plus the Linux-based equivalent to Outlook, Evolution." My answer is yes Evolution is what I want - but I want it on Windows.

      The problem is that the year of the Linux desktop has still not arrived.

      Bullshit. Sounds like a quote from someone who hasn't even tried. Maybe he should try switching [hardocp.com] to Ubuntu for 30 days and report back.

  • by Coryoth (254751) on Tuesday March 06, 2007 @02:11AM (#18247026) Homepage Journal
    So what is needed is Evolution for Windows eh? Kind of like this [sourceforge.net]? I don't have Windows around anywhere to try it out, but it looks [sourceforge.net] like it runs fine. I expect it still has a few kinks to be worked out, but it is certainly up and running, so not only is a port in progress, it looks like it is even usable already.
    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by Pikoro (844299)
      I've been using Evolution on windows for a few months now and it works fine. Slow, but fully functional...
    • by julesh (229690) on Tuesday March 06, 2007 @03:00AM (#18247250)
      but it is certainly up and running, so not only is a port in progress, it looks like it is even usable already.

      Having recently tried to use it, I'd say no. There are several major issues:

      * Redraws are nightmarishly slow (admittedly this could be because I'm using an old PC, but I haven't seen any application redraw this slowly before).
      * Initial configuration doesn't seem to work entirely correctly: if you need to change between SSL modes for an IMAP connection, you have to restart the program, but nothing tells you this. This may or may not be a Windows-only issue, I don't know.
      * It stores its files in a subdirectory called ".evolution" of your user profile directory, not your application data or local settings directory. If you're using roaming profiles, this just plain won't work.
      • To be fair, your first two issues probably also exist on Linux. Evolution really is that bad.

        I remember at one point people were tracking down various performance issues with Reiser4. Now, Reiser4 fsync performance sucks balls, although that really isn't a huge issue with most of what I use it for. But nothing makes it look worse than crap like Evolution -- case in point -- resizing the columns. As you drag, it does its opaque/animation thing, so you're dragging it 5-10 pixels at a time, and the window and
      • by jZnat (793348) *

        * It stores its files in a subdirectory called ".evolution" of your user profile directory, not your application data or local settings directory. If you're using roaming profiles, this just plain won't work.
        Your point? That's how settings are saved in every other operating system. Although, it could probably do better and mark the .evolution/ directory as hidden since Windows doesn't respect the .hidden syntax.
        • by julesh (229690)
          Your point? That's how settings are saved in every other operating system.

          My point is that when porting software to a new operating system, changing its behaviour so that it respects local platform conventions is desirable.
  • 1. Naive programmers implement patented microsoft CLR/C#
    2. Novell buys liability nightmare language/runtime implementation
    3. Novell does patent deal with Microsoft
    4. Novell releases patented information for Office translator
    5. Microsoft starts raising legitimate lawsuits against both Novel (mono) and everyone else (using Novell precedent of signing patent protection agreement)
    6. . . .
    7. Loss!!!

    Wake up, little Suse. . .

    • Don't worry - this ends good either way.

      Either we'll have a good migration path, or Microsoft will demonstrate its definition of "Open" very clearly to governments and ODF will win over a lot more governments.
    • 3. Novell does patent deal with Microsoft
      [...]
      5. Microsoft starts raising legitimate lawsuits against [...] Novel (mono)

      So, you are saying that Novell entered into a patent deal with Microsoft, so that they could get sued by Microsoft for infringing patents? I don't think that makes any sense. Novell's lawyers did read the contract, after all.

      Your argument that other parties could get sued, however, is plausible in theory.
      • by growse (928427)
        The deal is that MS won't sue Novell's *customers*, not Novell themselves.
        • True, but as I said elsewhere in this thread, Microsoft are paying Novell far more for their patents than vice versa. So, I don't think this deal is meant to be the basis for patent lawsuits against Novell (Novell would have more to gain).

          Microsoft's angle is probably something else - lawsuits against other people, or insurance against Linux taking off (by making money off of it through Novell), or by getting legitimization through Novell (as shown in TFA), etc.
  • by 280Z28 (896335) on Tuesday March 06, 2007 @02:23AM (#18247084) Homepage
    Nail in the coffin? Pretty bold thing to say about Microsoft Office. OpenOffice is a great, free product, but IMO it's no replacement for Office in a never-look-back sense. Yes, they should keep putting pressure on MS regarding open formats, but I'm not about to switch from Office 2007 after my [wonderful] experience with it so far.

    Techies love to complain about things like the ribbon, but everyone I see actually use it loves it.

    MS Office isn't going anywhere. Neither is OpenOffice. And apparently neither is the Drama Llama [280z28.org].
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by jkrise (535370)
      Techies love to complain about things like the ribbon, but everyone I see actually use it loves it.

      I'm not so sure. Using ribbons to tie up the hair is so 18th century. Nice-looking girls have switched to prettier things like hair-bands ....

      Besides, do female techies exist? And if so, do they read Slashdot???

      • Weavng ribbons *into* hair braids and styles, however, remains amazingly attractive. It looks a bit odd on a beard, but I've met folks who consider it quite attractive.
  • by chiasmus1 (654565)
    I fail to see how this can be considered "a nail in the coffin"? Not even the article really talked about what Novell releasing this would do, and why. Am I missing something?
    • by westlake (615356)
      I fail to see how this can be considered "a nail in the coffin"? Am I missing something?

      There is always room for another "Death of Microsoft" post on the Slashdot front page.

  • by cheros (223479) on Tuesday March 06, 2007 @02:41AM (#18247166)
    The stranglehold is in the calendaring AFAIK.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Do you remember the classic IE vs netscape battles back in the 90's?

    Microsoft came out with a fast release and quick delivery iterations.
    Yes, they had an advantage by forcing it upon every windows 9X user, but their original release was pitiful, and netscape had an opportunity to deliver a superior product and win the browser majority.

    What did they do?

    Netscape spent their time working in multiple directions without releasing a core product.

    In the end, the mozilla project came out with the superior browser,
    • by mgiuca (1040724) on Tuesday March 06, 2007 @07:11AM (#18248188)
      If you're comparing MS Office to IE, and OpenOffice.org to Firefox, well history is starting to look quite good on the open side...
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Brunellus (875635)

        Tell that to the great unwashed mass of users that don't use Firefox because it's not their default browser. But be sure to speak slowly, because they won't understand that the blue E isn't all of the Internet

      • by roscivs (923777)
        Actually I see MS Office as IE and OpenOffice.org as the newly-open-sourced Mozilla: big, bloated, and buggy. I'm just waiting for someone to turn OpenOffice.org into a lean, mean Firefox machine. *Then* we'll start seeing real competition.
        • by mgiuca (1040724)
          Sounds about right, but as far as the competition goes, I think Firefox is about as slim as IE, while OO and Office are as bloated as each other. Office suites tend to be.

          I personally haven't had much trouble with OOo.
    • by Vexorian (959249)
      Firefox isn't fighting with opera and safari for 10% of the browser market...
  • Thunderbird (Score:4, Interesting)

    by iamacat (583406) on Tuesday March 06, 2007 @02:59AM (#18247240)
    Evolution may be trying to clone Outlook, but it's not great as a standalone e-mail program. There is nothing really wrong with Thunderbird. For a calendar, try Palm Desktop. There is a little program to sync it to iPod.
  • ... this could make Linux desktops (KDE, GNOME, etc.) suitable for SOHO use. I work independently, but I need 100% compatibility with Word and PowerPoint to collaborate with colleagues and funding agencies who are still dedicated to MS Office. I can save money and headaches over CrossOver.

    In particular, I'm hoping that there will emerge a GNOME alternative to Impress, and that AbiWord .doc filtering will be perfect. (.xls filtering in Gnumeric has been pretty good.)
  • by SnprBoB86 (576143) on Tuesday March 06, 2007 @03:10AM (#18247286) Homepage
    This will do squat for putting any nails in anything.

    Microsoft wanted this. Infact, Microsoft helped Novel do this: http://www.novell.com/ctoblog/?p=43 [novell.com]
    And the Microsoft Open XML developers were more than helpful to advertise this: http://blogs.msdn.com/brian_jones/archive/2007/03/ 02/openoffice-support-for-the-openxml-formats.aspx [msdn.com]

    This is a GOOD THING for everyone. OpenOffice.org users get interopability with MS Office. MS Office meets many government required interopability and open XML format requirements. Win-win.

    Let's keep the absurd commentary out of the summary and in the modded down comments, please?
    • by g2devi (898503) on Tuesday March 06, 2007 @08:33AM (#18248492)
      > OpenOffice.org users get interopability with MS Office.

      The problem is, this translator is "lossy", meaning that any translation will lose information *both ways*:
      http://odf-converter.sourceforge.net/features.html [sourceforge.net]

      Also, being a translator instead of an exporter means that a double save will have to happen which has it's own set of issues.

      > Win-win.

      Actually, it's win-lose since it's the appearance of openness without actual openness, so MS Office devotes will be able to claim that no change in status quo is required (after all competition exists so there's no vendor lockin) but no-one will trust ODF translations into OOXML since they will look bad. Another side effect is that people will move away from DOC which has better support universally (through years of reverse engineering) in favour of OOXML (which has poorer universal support) since "XML is the future". Not good.

      But if you're going to support OOXML in OpenOffice despite this last comment, a better approach would be an OOXML *exporter*. The key difference between an exporter and a translator is that an exporter has access to a lot more information about the document (the internal application representation of document) and so the exporter can be more accurate than the translator (which could in theory rebuild those data structures, but in practice won't unless OpenOffice and MS Office are refactored so that the creation of the internal data structures from the file system is available through a library) and an exporter will be faster (no double-save, no external tool, no recreation of even minimal internal data structures).
      • by bigpat (158134)

        Actually, it's win-lose since it's the appearance of openness without actual openness, so MS Office devotes will be able to claim that no change in status quo is required (after all competition exists so there's no vendor lockin) but no-one will trust ODF translations into OOXML since they will look bad. Another side effect is that people will move away from DOC which has better support universally (through years of reverse engineering) in favour of OOXML (which has poorer universal support) since "XML is the future". Not good.

        Yes, this was my impression also. But since Microsoft is hell bent on pushing OOXML as the next format, then it was likely that OOXML will be a de facto standard for MS Word in about a year or two once a critical mass of Office 07 installations are in the market. Having some compatibility in Open Office for that format is desirable, but if it is a way way conversion then it could very well be a trap. Much better to have the ability to read and write ODF in Microsoft Office, so that people have the option

  • Since there seems to be no way around this entire IP mess, I shall go with the flow for now and ask - is it (legally) safe to include this in any Linux OSS project?
  • After reading the article and comments, it appears the compatibility is only good for Novell's version of Open Office. It is not available for the "standard" Open Office.
  • by jkrise (535370) on Tuesday March 06, 2007 @03:39AM (#18247388) Journal
    Throughout it's existence, Novell has never been a credible threat to Microsoft over a reasonable lenth of time. Their agreement with Microsoft further reinforces the suspicion that Novell might not be realy competing, rather they might be collaborating with Microsoft to further extend the monopoly situation and exclude genuine choice, and freedom of software. Some concerns:

    1. Does Novell's translator work well with OO.org, or Novell's version of Open Office only?
    2. Like Mono's port of VB, is the usage of the translator covered by the patent deal between MS and Novell?
    3. Why did Novell abandon the Netware range of products?

    This does not appear to be a nail in the coffin of Office, it seems to be an extended lease of life for a dying format and bloatware from the 800lb gorilla.

    -
    • by growse (928427)

      1. Does Novell's translator work well with OO.org, or Novell's version of Open Office only?

      Probably both, Novell aren't doing anything drastic (if at all) to OO.o. They're certainly not putting MS patents in their own version - they can't as it's GPL.

      2. Like Mono's port of VB, is the usage of the translator covered by the patent deal between MS and Novell?

      Depends. If it's released under GPL or similar, then it doesn't have MS patents in it, and Novell will have checked that. If they're selling the conver

    • by AYeomans (322504) <ajv AT yeomans DOT org DOT uk> on Tuesday March 06, 2007 @09:01AM (#18248606)
      It's fascinating how slashdot still prefers opinions to facts.

      I downloaded the odfconverter-1.0.0-2.oxt file and tried to install into OpenOffice.org 2.1.0 for Windows (as downloaded from openoffice.org web site, not the Novell version).

      I had to use Tools -> Extension manager (not Package manager), and when installing, had several pop-ups stating "This media-type is not supported: application/octet-stream". OKing these showed the odfconverter installed into "My extensions". And "Microsoft Word 2007 Document (.docx)" was added to the list of files in File -> Open.

      But trying to open a .docx file (the Windows Vista Product Guide [microsoft.com] failed, with nothing happening or displayed.

      Anyone want to try the other options of Linux, OO.o 2.0.4, Novel OO.o 2.0.4 [novell.com] and report back?
    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by lennier (44736)
      3. Why did Novell abandon the Netware range of products?

      What an odd question. They didn't. They ported it to Linux. That's what Open Enterprise Server is. SuSE + Netware. And at the same time they built a whole lot more web-service type services off to the side of the 'Netware' box.

      By 'Netware' I mean the bundle of core file-and-print technologies that date back to the old-school Netware 4.x/5.x/6.x days: Novell Storage Services file system, Novell Core Protocol for file access, Novell Distributed Printer
  • 1- How well does it work ? In my experience, translators and export filters are never that great. So even a translator is not enough, it has to be a GOOD translator.

    2- More generally, how well does OpenDoc travel from one program to another, and from one platform to another ? We all know .doc is not very good at maintaining layout across platforms / versions / even PCs... is OpenDoc any better ?
  • Evolution (Score:4, Informative)

    by dotpl (601535) on Tuesday March 06, 2007 @04:12AM (#18247540)
    We don't need Evolution for windows, we need something other than the pile of crap that Evolution is.

    Disclaimer: I use Evolution.
    • by arevos (659374)

      Disclaimer: I use Evolution.
      Yeah, I used Evolution for quite a while, since it integrates nicely with GNOME. Unfortunately, as you say, it's a complete pile of excrement with a stability that would shame beta software, let alone an application that claims to be stable.

      Thunderbird's quite a nice replacement, if you just want an email client. I'm guessing you need something more, though.
  • by Caspian (99221) on Tuesday March 06, 2007 @06:23AM (#18248014)

    ...a nail in the coffin of the franchise known as Microsoft Office...

    Please. Office isn't going anywhere. As long as there are Microsoft-loving managers, MS Office will be overwhelmingly dominant. Frankly-- and bear in mind that I hate MS-- Office is a far sight better than OpenOffice.org, which I've always found to be bloated and amateurish.

    This whole "OOH OFFICE IS GOIN' DOOOOOOOOWN" mentality strikes me as wishful thinking.
  • What I need more.. (Score:2, Interesting)

    by rockypg (787998)
    ..is an evolution plugin that connects to Microsoft Exchange server Outlook Web Access through a proxy.

    My job requires me to program on Linux, and I also prefer using Linux full time as ITservices here has draconian policies here for Windows users (Everyone is a restricted user and they cannot even change their own wallpaper). On my linux box, I have root access, my own wallpaper and mp3 player. There are so few linux boxen here that ITS let me have root access. They aren't well versed enough, and they don'
  • n. The right to sell a company's products in a particular area using the company's name

    From Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary [cambridge.org].

    Office is not a franchise, it is a product, like any other piece of software. Please stop using words you don't understand, it lowers the tone of the entire site and leads to otherwise utterly redundant posts like this one.
  • The article argues that, though this move may represent a nail in the coffin of the franchise known as Microsoft Office
    It does no such thing. Which is good, because that would be an incredibly stupid thing to claim.
  • For a released product, i sure can't find it anywhere.
    • I agree. Seriously, what's with this Slashdot post and the linked article? And why aren't other people asking where the hell it is? And why isn't someone providing a link?

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