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I remember this discussion a few years back, when MSO was the defacto
standard, and a moving target. One of the most important things for any
agency, company government, or individual is backward compatibility. I have
many documents that are difficult for me to retrieve, and I wrote them less
than 20 years ago, using DOS programs.  I can only imagine what things will
be like in 30 years for those "old" files. I believe it's of paramount
importance, even in this age of rapid development and change, to realize
that electronic storage of documents is the wave of the future. They must
all be stored in a simple-to-access format that any program can read, not
just the latest flavor of the "big boy."  I am actually fairly concerned
about this, since the concept of proprietary file types has never been
addressed by any government agency (it would be easy, for example, for the
USGovt to mandate that all files be maintained with the formatting in a
separate file.  If a large govt (China, the US, EU) mandated that simple
change, then all files would cease to be proprietary, except for formatting
changes.  One might lose the formats, but the file itself would have a
permanence that most files do not now have.  I might also suggest that the
file formatting be subject to some sort of regulation (yes, they CAN do
that!), which makes all formatting retrievable, no matter how long it's
been since the file was created.
Otherwise, we'll all lose a huge amount of information.
That's my opinion.  YMMV....
Steve Bradley

On Mon, Nov 19, 2012 at 9:59 AM, Dennis E. Hamilton <

The docx, xslx, pptx formats and others are OOXML. There are deviations as
well as features (such as encryption) that are not part of OOXML.  But most
of the non-support claims about Microsoft honoring OOXML are based on the
fact that early implementations supported the transitional flavor of OOXML.
 The move to the strict flavor, a separation created in the ISO process,
has been made over time along with continuing support of transitional OOXML.

My experience is that deviations with respect to the OOXML standard are
documented better in Microsoft on-line implementation notes than is done by
any implementations of ODF-based software.

Microsoft Office also supports ODF 1.1 since Office 2007 SP2 and ODF 1.2
is supported in the new Office 2013.  There are public, on-line
implementation notes and documentation of deviations for those too.  I've
also heard that European versions of Microsoft Office can be set to have
ODF as the default format.  I have no way to confirm that and I am not
certain that is new with Office 2013 or is also the case for Office 2010.

The main binary formats, and RTF (a text-carried format) are now all
documented and that has been true for a few years. All of the
specifications are freely downloadable.

 - Dennis

-----Original Message-----
From: Don C. Myers []
Sent: Monday, November 19, 2012 08:57
Subject: Re: [libreoffice-users] Re: OpenOffice to be dumped in Freiburg ?

Hi Everyone,

When the Microsoft formats were approved as an ISO standard, wasn't that
supposed to make the information on their formats available to everyone
else? From what I've read through the years, they have failed to
implement their own ISO standards. Shouldn't there be some way to
enforce the ISO standards approval on Microsoft so they can become
inter-operable with LibreOffice?


On 11/19/2012 08:03 AM, VA wrote:
Tanstaafl wrote:

"There is one more hing that could turn this around - if the EU (or some
other major governmental entity) were to engage in and win an antitrust
lawsuit against Microsoft and force them to *fully* document their file
formats, as happened with their Windows Server SMB protocols (which I
understand has benefited the Samba project immensely)."

It would help immensely if the Open Source folks would combine their
efforts on one excellent MS alternative. The twin development of AOO
and LibO (with each having its own advantages over the other), only
helps MS.




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 Steven C. (Steve) Bradley
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