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Microsoft

ISO Approves OOXML 435

Posted by kdawson
from the looks-like-no-joke dept.
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.
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

ISO Approves OOXML

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  • Support Needed. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by gnutoo (1154137) on Tuesday April 01, 2008 @05:51PM (#22935884) Journal

    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: (Score:2, Funny)

      by mrbluze (1034940)

      Broad? I think they mispelled bold faced fraud.
      Or maybe they won the support by supplying extremely broad broads, or something similarly corrupt.
      • by ShieldW0lf (601553) on Tuesday April 01, 2008 @06:41PM (#22936370) Journal
        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?
        • To: central@iso.org (Score:5, Interesting)

          by Tolkien (664315) on Tuesday April 01, 2008 @10:07PM (#22937436) Journal
          Subject: Re: Result of voting on ISO/IEC DIS 29500

          Hello, I'm writing to voice my opinion on the approval of Microsoft's OOXML format. It amazes me that ISO allowed such a monstrosity to pass. Everyone is aware of Microsoft's unending history of corruption. They bought out as many representatives as they could, to get this vote. Even Norway had corrupt people within its circles, though their committee chairman wasn't one of them (http://tech.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=08/03/31/200201) thankfully. It appears ISO completely ignored his protests however because this change of vote, according to the PDF file that I found here (http://slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=08/04/01/2229207), lists Norway as Yes without comments, regardless of the fact that it was originally No with comments.


          Shame on you ISO. You have successfully contributed to setting back innovation both directly and indirectly until you come to your senses and approve the ODF file format, or another format which will have been developed by a corporation that has nothing monetary to gain by standardization. How long will that be, 5 years? Maybe 10 years?


          As this file (http://www.noooxml.org/local--files/arguments/TheCaseAgainstOOXML.pdf) should illustrate, everyone with two brain cells worth rubbing together knows that those thousands of pages contain many instances of Microsoft intentionally leaving out important information necessary to implement functional OOXML files which look and act identically in all software implementations. This should have been a massive red flag for ISO to choose to not even consider OOXML as a standard, much less APPROVE it.


          I urge you to reconsider and reverse the decision to formally approve OOXML. OOXML should never have even been considered in the first place.


          After this mistake, I will never fully trust ISO's standards again, considering how Microsoft successfully undermined its voting process, and ISO made no effort to verify or rectify the corruption. I suppose the next question could be "how much money did ISO gain by approving this format?" but I dare not ask. I'm sure I'd be sadly disappointed regardless of the answer given.


          Sincerely,
          Tolkien

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Zymergy (803632) *
        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. (Score:5, Interesting)

        by Xiph (723935) on Tuesday April 01, 2008 @06:47PM (#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.
        • Re:Support Needed. (Score:5, Insightful)

          by Gravatron (716477) on Tuesday April 01, 2008 @09:07PM (#22937214)
          Given the nature of the corruption this process showed, I don't think sending email is going to do much good unless said email contains bank account numbers pointing to a few million dollars.
        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by Bogtha (906264)

          ISO is deliberately avoiding an Aprils Fool announcement

          Which in itself is an announcement. If they rejected OOXML, would anybody think it was a joke? No. If they rubber-stamped OOXML, would anybody think it was a joke? Yes. So, by admitting there is a danger of it being construed as a joke, what is ISO telling everybody?

          It's either that, or they aren't bothered about the joke aspect and are just using it as an excuse to stall while they figure stuff out.

    • by nuzak (959558) on Tuesday April 01, 2008 @06:01PM (#22935994) Journal
      > I think they mispelled bold faced fraud.

      Perhaps their OOXML formatters have problems with boldface, and that's just how it rendered.
    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward
      No, they misspelled bribe.
    • Its true (Score:5, Funny)

      by javilon (99157) on Tuesday April 01, 2008 @07:09PM (#22936570) Homepage
      Even the KDE foundation voted [kde.org] for it !!!
    • Re:Support Needed. (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Ilgaz (86384) * on Tuesday April 01, 2008 @07:26PM (#22936700) Homepage
      Investigation should have started right after they gathered ISO support for .NET. Sold out geeks kept claiming .NET is a standard and while they are stuck on version 1.0 of standard with their "mono", .NET 3.0 Apps are all over the place. .NET became Dolby Digital EX while they are stuck in Mono.
  • by Adaptux (1235736) * on Tuesday April 01, 2008 @05:51PM (#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]).

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 01, 2008 @05:52PM (#22935904)
    Ye Who Code This Standard!
  • Here come Barbra... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Naughty Bob (1004174) * on Tuesday April 01, 2008 @05:56PM (#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: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by v1 (525388)
      And they ask "why?" Because there's nothing to bolster your company like buying a standards committee or two. I wonder which one they'll shop for next? ISO is going to be a pretty tough bargain to beat.
  • Thank God (Score:5, Funny)

    by Mateo_LeFou (859634) on Tuesday April 01, 2008 @05:57PM (#22935940) Homepage
    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. (Score:5, Interesting)

      by inTheLoo (1255256) on Tuesday April 01, 2008 @06:11PM (#22936096) Journal

      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.

  • by unity100 (970058) on Tuesday April 01, 2008 @05:58PM (#22935944) Homepage Journal
    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.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 01, 2008 @06:00PM (#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.)
    • by eerok (1033124) on Tuesday April 01, 2008 @06:53PM (#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 (Score:5, Insightful)

    by mugnyte (203225) on Tuesday April 01, 2008 @06:01PM (#22935984) Journal
    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: (Score:2, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward
      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.

  • by darkfnord23 (696608) on Tuesday April 01, 2008 @06:02PM (#22935996)
    Assuming it's not a joke... Anyone using this standard for anything deserves a punch in the face.
  • pyhrric (Score:5, Interesting)

    by apodyopsis (1048476) on Tuesday April 01, 2008 @06:04PM (#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 (Score:5, Informative)

      by holloway (46404) on Tuesday April 01, 2008 @06:22PM (#22936202) Homepage
      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: (Score:3, Informative)

        by the_olo (160789)

        I don't mean to sound like format correctness Nazi, but your PDFs could be much, much smaller.

        You just need to substitute the Nimbus family of fonts (which are in Type 1 format) for some corresponding TTF fonts, like the FreeSans/FreeSerif families.

        The problem is that OpenOffice PDF exported currently cannot do subsetting for Type 1 fonts, only for TTF fonts. So it embeds the full Type 1 fonts (Nimbus in your case) in the file. All the characters, including unused ones, like Japanese, Hindi and Chinese

    • by pembo13 (770295)
      OpenOffice is already adding support. I don't know why.
      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by Anonymous Coward
        It's part of Microsoft's master plan to force OpenOffice to become a big, bloated, unmaintainable blob of code.
    • by cheros (223479) on Tuesday April 01, 2008 @06:26PM (#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.
      • 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: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by earbenT (992594)

        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.
      • Here's how I envisiage fighting this

        first set up a web site with a simplish name that's anonymously funded and transparently run, indeed I am an MCP at a Microsoft only shop, i'd be happy to run the site but my priorities lie with feeding my children.

        It needs to be factual and neutral. Never yelling, or preaching. It needs to be the (webstandards.org) acid test of the document suite / format world.

        It needs to show clearly where each of several major office suites stand in relation to compatibility to both f
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by MightyMartian (840721)

      (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

    • Re:pyhrric (Score:4, Funny)

      by Adaptux (1235736) * on Tuesday April 01, 2008 @07:31PM (#22936740)

      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.

      Microsoft has a legitimate business interest to be seen as the leader in office document formats, and this interest is best served by participating in the ISO/IEC processes for refining and improving OOXML in good faith and with an active desire to resolve the issues that are raised.

      While I am highly critical of all national standardization organization officials who have contributed to allowing Microsoft push OOXML through via the "fast track" which IMO has proved to be clearly inappropriate, I'm really getting the impression that there is a tendency of seeing Microsoft primarily as an enemy which is getting in the way of our abvility to see reality as it is. I can personally testify that at the BRM and since then, Microsoft has shown every indication of willingness for the known technical shortcomings of OOXML to be corrected, and since I believe that it is in Microsoft's best interest to continue in this direction, I currently see no reason not to believe the Microsoft people that I have been communicating with when they indicate that it is Microsoft's intention to continue with this bona-fide cooperative stance regarding OOXML.

  • .doc attachments (Score:3, Insightful)

    by csk_1975 (721546) on Tuesday April 01, 2008 @06:04PM (#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?
    • 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
  • by Foobar of Borg (690622) on Tuesday April 01, 2008 @06:08PM (#22936054)
    There is no April Fools today since the real news is comical enough (though in a tragically funny sort of way).
  • by Tatsh (893946) on Tuesday April 01, 2008 @06:09PM (#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)
    • by Tatsh (893946)
      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... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by $RANDOMLUSER (804576) on Tuesday April 01, 2008 @06:15PM (#22936132)
    ...find it ironic that the document describing OOXML's ISO adoption is in PDF format?
    • by Creepy Crawler (680178) on Tuesday April 01, 2008 @06:20PM (#22936180)
      That is because Microsoft's implementation is not 100% OOXML compatible.
    • by Tatsh (893946)
      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?
      • PDF is an open standard by the way...
        So is OOXML. Says so right on the label.

        /tongue firmly in cheek
        • by Tatsh (893946)
          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 wi
          • by Bert64 (520050) <bert@slasTIGERhd ... ee.com minus cat> on Wednesday April 02, 2008 @04:16AM (#22938676) Homepage
            Intel would love to buy AMD, and VIA, and be the only source of x86 compatible chips...
            Intel, like any other company, don't want motivation to progress. They want to continue selling old products for as long as possible at the highest price point they can, not be forced to develop something new and reduce prices in order to compete. Lucky for us consumers Intel don't have that ability, thanks to AMD... The problem is that Microsoft do have that ability, and they abuse it as much as they can. In a competitive marketplace, ODF would be prevalent (supported by a majority of vendors) and OOXML would die a death (supported by only one) and microsoft would have been forced to implement ODF like everyone else.
  • ... 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?
  • corruption, fraud, sellouts, themorethingschangethemoretheystaythesame, hopeitisajoke, itsatrap, Micro$oft$ucks, OOXMLisafraud, confusedvoters, bureaucraticbungling, flipfloppers ... I could go on.
  • in the path of other well respected and used ISO IT standards, like OSI and CMIP.
  • :(
    I hate it when Microsoft makes things its bitch. And I liked the ISO, too...
  • 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.
  • by failedlogic (627314) on Tuesday April 01, 2008 @06:41PM (#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.

  • by v(*_*)vvvv (233078) on Tuesday April 01, 2008 @06:42PM (#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...

    • by WWWWolf (2428) <wwwwolf@iki.fi> on Tuesday April 01, 2008 @07:58PM (#22936878) Homepage

      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...

      From user's point of view, this rushed standardisation means that the whole point of the standardisation has been defeated in OOXML's case. It also means that we now have two standards that solve the exact same problem, and thanks to the Marketing, the technically far worse format has a chance at winning: If OOXML becomes the dominant format, the promising future from OpenDocument may not be realised. It can be a major setback.

      And what was the point of the standardisation? What was the golden promise of OpenDocument? Interoperability, plain and simple.

      Simply put: In the current state of affairs, OpenDocument is implementable by third parties. OOXML is not. There can and will be many OpenDocument applications. If OOXML won't get fixed, there will be one and only one application with anywhere near compliant OOXML support.

      With OpenDocument, you can edit the documents in any ODF-compliant application - or process them with any external tool, or generate them from scratch programmatically - and there's no problems because the standards is complete, well specified, and not hopelessly tied to one application. OOXML, in comparison, has nothing of this: There's a bunch of nasty features that make writing completely compliant applications difficult, if not impossible. The end result will be that there's one application that processes OOXML "perfectly" (MSOffice) and the rest work when they work (and since consumers expect perfect behaviour, it means they aren't used very much, no?)...

      Sure, the interoperability dream is still very much there, because ODF is still out there. It's just that now we have a completely redundant standard that is a) technically inferior but b) Microsoft will make you either use it, or cry and use it.

    • by Neuticle (255200) on Tuesday April 01, 2008 @09:01PM (#22937196) Homepage
      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...

      That's pretty much because:
      a) the voting irregularities are IMMENSE
      and
      b) there is no review on OOXML from the user's standpoint, because there is NO implementation (ZIP, ZERO, NONE) of the ISO candidate version of OOXML to review. Not even from Microsoft, who are using a different version now, and (IIRC) have stated that they WILL NOT be using the ISO version in the future, if it is approved. AND it is likely that there will never be a complete 3rd party implementation of the ISO OOXML standard because it is so long, complex and dependent on patents and references to legacy closed source software. MS happens to own that source and those patents and aren't about to give them away. So basically it's a dead end mockery of the ISO process.

      If that's not enough to answer your questions AND piss you off, do some more reading on the topic.

      Try reading up on how and for what the Fast-track process has been used in the past: Mature, complete and currently implemented industry standards that are just being formalized; Not slap-dick, fly-by-night, throw-in-kitchen-sink 6000 page cluster-f*ks like OOXML.

  • 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.
  • by Eggplant62 (120514) on Tuesday April 01, 2008 @06:49PM (#22936430)
    Interesting headline you have there. I think it should read:

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

  • End of ISO? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Ilgaz (86384) * on Tuesday April 01, 2008 @07:23PM (#22936668) Homepage
    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.
  • by QuietLagoon (813062) on Tuesday April 01, 2008 @08:00PM (#22936898)
    Microsoft's OOXML won ISO standard status.

    Approval was not won, approval was purchased.

  • Nothing has changed (Score:3, Interesting)

    by mlwmohawk (801821) on Tuesday April 01, 2008 @08:32PM (#22937090)
    The ISO standard, besides showing how corrupting Microsoft's monopoly money is, changes nothing.

    We have the same situation today as we did yesterday.

    (1) A "standard" which is only a standard because a monopoly uses it.
    (2) A "standard" which is independently implemented by (n>1) vendors.

    So, as long as *we* the technologically literate stay "on message" like the P.R. spinmasters, we can use this in our favor.

    The "April fools document standard" AFDS for short, should be as well known as the "halloween documents." And when they ask why it is called the "april fools document standard," tell them.
  • by buss_error (142273) on Tuesday April 01, 2008 @10:51PM (#22937634) Homepage Journal
    Like virginity, credibility is only something one can perserve or loose.

    Unlike Voltare, who regarded virginity as a corectable perversion, credibility is the coin of the technical trade. Lose it, and watch ALL your works fade away.

    If the ISO doen't move to retract OOXML as a "standard", their other standards will only be seen as gross manipulation of the technical industry, and be discarded and ignored.

    Pity. Aside from how much work has gone into other ISO standards, I can't quite see the the people who have loaned their reputation sticking by a body so obviously bribed, coorsed, and schivvied into "accepting" such a "standard" to continue to support it.

    I'd think that within a very short time, those who regard their honor as something more than coin to be traded to the corporation most likely to bid high, twist arms to breaking, and cheat at every turn will start to distance themselves from the ISO because of this.

    It would be one thing if the offered "standard" met some acceptable technical goal. In my estimation, what we're seeing isn't a technical goal, but a lock in to assure undeserved profit.
  • by Ice Tiger (10883) on Wednesday April 02, 2008 @04:57AM (#22938796)
    Will be interesting to see who voted for what and what made them change if they did. Potentially there could be a lot of fallout for those involved as the facts come to light.

    Personally I have lost faith in ISO because it seems the worlds largest computer software manufacturer can just buy their own standards from this organisation.

BASIC is to computer programming as QWERTY is to typing. -- Seymour Papert

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