Andy Updegrove writes: "Microsoft's bid to gain approval for its OOXML specification in the first round of global voting has failed. I now have official confirmation of that fact, and expect to have final numbers soon. In the meantime, Microsoft has just issued a press release, putting the best spin it can on the results. That release is titled "Strong Global Support for Open XML as It Enters Final Phase of ISO Standards Process."The release focuses on the degree of participation (51 National Bodies), and level of "support" (74% of all qualified votes, without differentiating between P and O countries).It also refers to this level of support at "this preliminary stage of the process," and compares it "favorably" to the number of countries participating in the votes to consider ODF and PDF, but without mentioning percentage levels of support, which would include Observer as well as Participating member votes.The drama will now switch to the long run up to the February 25 — 29 Ballot Resolution Meeting, and to how much Microsoft will be willing to change in OOXML in order to convert a sufficient number of no votes to yeses, in order to finally gain approval, if it can, for its beleaguered specification."
Geoffrey.landis writes: "Auto industry blogger Lawrence Ulrich notes that Honda is now making a "Partial Zero Emissions Vehicle" (or PZEV for short) version of the 2008 Accord, an all-new vehicle that is redesigned to meet California emission standards. He notes "So, just how green is a PZEV machine? Well, if you just cut your lawn with a gas mower, congratulations, you just put out more pollution in one hour than these cars do in 2,000 miles of driving."
But the irony is that it's actually illegal for automakers to sell these green cars outside of the special states they were designed for! Apparently, anybody selling one of these ultra-green vehicles out of the correctly-designated venue — which means either California, or seven northeast-states with similar pollution laws — "could be subject to civil fines of up to $27,500. Volvo sent its dealers a memo alerting them to this fact, noting that its greenest S40 and V50 models were only for the special states.""