The Haus

Saturday, September 24, 2005

Massachusetts Goes OpenDocument

The question we like to ask here on The Haus is: if you use proprietary software, who OWNS your data? Well, in the case of Massachusetts: Massachusetts does. That's because they have decided to move all of their documents away from Microsoft Office and it's proprietary, patent-laden formats into the freely avaiable OpenDocument specification. Good news for Massachusetts. Now we get to see how Microsoft responds. I wonder if Ballmer will be throwing some more chairs?

J.t.Qbe comments: Maybe he'll try luring them back with his monkey boy dance.

A.T. Hun comments: DEVELOPERS!!1!1

In all seriousness, this is a major issue. I've got old papers from college that I can't open in anything anymore. At least with those I can usually strip out the text if need be. The WordPerfect and MS Word formats have so much extra crap in them that stripping out the text is an exercise in futility. I moved to mainly so that I can be guaranteed that my data will still be mine and accessible to me in the future. The OpenDocument format will help guarantee compatibility, no matter what program I choose to use in the future. No wonder MS is in a tizzy about this. The DOC format, not Windows, is really their big cash cow. DOC guarantees that people will be locked into MS Word forever.

J.t.Qbe comments: Hey A.T., want a copy of my handy-dandy Wordplus-to-text converter? You might need to update the late-80s era C to get it to compile, but it shouldn't be bad.

News for 09/24/2005

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