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A National Archive Moves to ODF 99

Andy Updegrove writes "The National Archives of Australia (NAA) has announced that it will move its digital archives program to OpenOffice 2.0, an open source implementation of ODF. Unlike Massachusetts or the City of Bristol (which announced it would convert to save on total cost of ownership), the NAA will deal almost exclusively with documents created elsewhere in multiple formats. As a result, it provides a "worst possible case" for testing the practicality of using ODF in a still largely non-ODF world. If successful, the NAA example would therefore demonstrate that the use of ODF is reasonable and feasible in more normal situations, where the percentage of documentation that is created and used internally is much larger."
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A National Archive Moves to ODF

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  • by Phantombrain ( 964010 ) on Monday April 03, 2006 @05:26PM (#15053506) Journal
    I'm wondering if this will be the start of the use of Open Source in more business applications. Most companies use M$ Office, since it is mainstream, even with it's large cost. Maybe the Government's example will be the beginning of the revolution.
  • Those which run under Linux probably wouldn't require new hardware either.

    Find me a Linux driver for my paid-for yet unsupported [] Microtek Scanmaker 4850 flatbed scanner, which was purchased long before I thought of switching this computer to Linux, and I'll believe you. Unless you are working with a computer that was built from the ground up for Linux, including buying a printed copy of a distribution's hardware compatibility list to carry with you to the computer store, I am 90 percent sure that you will have issues with at least one piece of hardware if you switch a computer from Windows XP to a common Linux distribution.

    And what about vertical-market proprietary software intended to run on the same computer, which is either available only for Windows or (if you're lucky) available for multiple platforms but priced such that using multiple platform versions in an organization is cost prohibitive? You would have to use Wine (significant overhead and less than full compatibility) to run your existing licensed software for Windows on a Linux box.

    What does [promotion in traditional media read by management] have to do with anything?

    It's the same reason most listeners prefer payola'd major label music to independent music: repeated exposure builds familiarity.

    I have seen relatively few MS Office, OO.o, or Corel WordPerfect ads either.

    Which magazines and which TV channels are you looking at? In the news magazines and cable news channels, I see a whole bunch of advertisements for Microsoft Office software.

    People giving away software usually don't spend money to ensure you'll take it from them.

    Then why doesn't Sun advertise its StarOffice software, the official commercial distribution of Or by "giving away software" do you also mean "we're practically giving it away", that is, budget software?

  • by ozmanjusri ( 601766 ) <> on Monday April 03, 2006 @10:08PM (#15055005) Journal
    I'm not sure why an office format would be the best thing to use for archives of final documents;

    ODF is an electronic document format, not an "office" format, whatever that means. Its advantage in this context is that any document in ODF can be dissasembled ito its component parts easily. Text, images and formatting can all be extracted and used separately if needed. PDFs are hard to convert back to the raw data.

  • Re:Bingo! (Score:3, Insightful)

    by shaitand ( 626655 ) on Monday April 03, 2006 @10:44PM (#15055140) Journal
    Correction. "OOo is slow" AND "it's still largely impelemented using" C and "C++ with all that entails."

    There is certainly no reason to believe it is slow BECAUSE C++ was used. One can write a slow app in any language. It is just a bit easier to do in an interpreted language like Java than in a compiled language like C++.

    P.S. Don't tell me that Java compiles to bytecode. That just means that Java compiles to an interpreted language instead of a native language.

Q: How many IBM CPU's does it take to execute a job? A: Four; three to hold it down, and one to rip its head off.