Microsoft XML format OOXML to become an ISO standard?


I have earlier in this blog stated I do not think the proposed standard Microsoft is presenting for ISO is of high enough quality to become a standard. The specification simply is not of good enough quality. Include too many degrees of freedom and I trust the ones that in detail have verified that what is in the spec is not enough to create interoperable implementations of software that implements the standard.

Now, in an article at IDG in Sweden some agencies in Sweden say it would be bad if OODF does not end up being an ISO standard. Because failing to become a standard would drive up costs for software.

I am surprised of these statements and really hope what these people really are saying (the statements can be interpreted in different ways of course) is that we hope OODF will become a standard because that shows that the specification is good enough so that for example competitors of Microsoft also can implement according to it.

This is what they say, in Swedish: – Det är enbart positivt om Microsofts format blir en öppen standard. Om inte kan vi bli tvungna att konvertera information och det blir kostsamt, säger Barbro Winstrand, it-direktör på Vägverket.

The article continue to say that the view of Barbro is that if (when) the government will require open standards and open document formats, then they will have already fulfilled that requirement by using Microsoft software if the Microsoft standard is accepted by ISO.

My view is that a standard is ready when it is ready. Rubber stamping is not a solution to requirements and interest to have open document formats.

I really hope Sweden will vote no.