Microsoft Says "Maybe Someday" on OpenDocument
October 18, 2005 1 Comment
A follow up to this post, it looks like Microsoft may consider adding OpenDocument support after all, based on “customer demand”. I'd guess that just one or two state Governments alone would be enough demand. I hope MA stands firm here. Unfortunately, one thing I can see happening (which could potentially be quite damaging) is substandard support. By adding deficient support, Microsoft could make using OpenDocument sufficiently painful that it would almost be useless. They'd have the “supports OpenDocument” checkbox to get the contracts, but people who had to use it would suffer. This could have two possible outcomes; 1) People hate OpenDocument and just keep using .doc out of a fundamental lack of understanding what the problem is. 2) People turn to a Word alternative that properly supports OpenDocument. I could see either happing depending on the situation, so it would certainly be a calculated risk on Microsoft's part. They have done something similar in the past with WordPerfect support and we know how that ended up. This story keeps getting more interesting though, and is definitely one I'll be keeping a close eye on (hint: you should too).
OpenDocument, OASIS, Microsoft, Open Source