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Software

+ - India rejects Microsoft OOXML in favor of ODF->

Submitted by
slashthedot
slashthedot writes "In a major setback to Microsoft's effort to further its OOXML standard, India on Thursday gave Microsoft a thumbs-down in the war of standards for office documents. In a tense meeting at Delhi's Manak Bhawan, the 21-member technical committee decided that India will vote a 'no' against Microsoft's Open Office Extensible Mark Up Language (OOXML) standard at the International Standards Organisation (ISO) in Geneva on September 2.
The Open Document Format (ODF) alliance — enjoying widespread support from academia and corporates like Oracle, IBM, Red Hat, Sun Microsystems, Google — were in a jubilant mood having succeeded in stalling OOXML from being accepted as a standard in India.
Microsoft,however, is still hopeful that India's 'No' vote will become a 'Yes' if Microsoft is able to resolve all technical issues with OOXML before the ballot resolution committee of ISO.
The voting was a hot issue in India for some weeks, with most of the institutions, including IITs and IIMs, supporting ODF, and only a few favoring OOXML as a choice. During the days before voting, there were reports that both the parties were offering director-level jobs at 200% hike to each other to help switch votes in their favour."

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Communications

+ - Data cable consumers are being ripped off

Submitted by venolius
venolius (409629) writes "CE Pro has an editorial that laments the duping of consumers of HDMI and other data cables by manufacturers:

What the consumer doesn't know just might hurt him. Have you come across DVD players at $29, or even as low as $19, and wondered why cables to connect them to HDTVs are 10 times as expensive? Finding a digital versatile disc player with its sophisticated optoelectronics and mechanical systems for $19 seems like magic. It's not magic though. It's volume production, the beauty of commerce, benefiting the consumer. What doesn't make sense to me is the cost of the cable to connect such a useful device to a television. It is akin to having to pay 10 times what you pay for a soft drink for the straw you use to sip it.


There is perhaps no consumer representation in the development of these interfaces, nor are there any regulations controlling the development of yet another consumer digital, serial interface. Companies claim to know what consumers want, which is perhaps why we have HDMI cables that cost $199.95 for a 16-foot length.
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