Open Standards



Throwing stones at people in glass houses

I work in a house with glass walls. Not literally, of course. The cost to air-condition such a house would be prohibitive. I mean that working on standard in OASIS is a public action, with process transparency and public visibility. The public doesn't see merely the end-product, or quarterly drafts, they can see (if they are so inclined) every discussion, every disagreement and every decision made by the TC, in near real-time. Our meeting minutes for our TC calls are posted for public inspection. Our mailing list archives, where most of the real work occurs, is there for the public to view. The comments submitted by the public are also available for anyone to read. This information is all archived from when the TC first met back in 2002, all the way to the discussions we're having today on spreadsheet formula namespaces.


Microsoft Shrewdly Funds Open XML Translator Project

Gartner: Microsoft's strategy for attaining interoperability is shrewd. By using third parties to do the work and opening the project to the open-source community, Microsoft will minimize potential criticism from those who claim that Microsoft aims to undermine the ODF standard. The "open and save to ODF" function will be integrated into Office 2007, but will be a separate menu item and so less seamless than the open and save functions for other file formats (which occur from the standard open and save dialogue boxes). Gartner believes that the project should add a 'compatibility checker' function for ODF documents to provide guidance regarding which functions will not translate. Gartner expects uncertainty regarding which document format will become the de facto standard to continue through at least 2008. Through 2009, the majority of documents will still be exchanged in Microsoft binary formats (0.7 probability).


Denmark ministries to publish in ODF by September

The Danish government will launch a four-month pilot program in September that will involve publishing documents in the OpenDocument Format (ODF), part of the country's broad endorsement of using open computing standards. The program will start with Denmark's finance and science ministries and possibly others, said Adam Lebech, head of the IT governance division within the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation.


Is ODF Headed for a Bill Buckner Moment?

"Last fall, it looked like Microsoft was indeed going down in the Bay State. Today, have a few drinks with an open source geek and he’ll tell you, perhaps not in so many words, that Microsoft’s response to the Massachusetts directive was a clumsy swing resulting in a slow grounder to the right side of the infield--but the ODF team has Bill Buckner at first base."

Belgian government chooses OpenDocument

In a blow to Microsoft, Belgium's government departments will be instructed to use an open file format for internal communications


Open to the public

We paid for it. We want it. Keeping public data open is the only acceptable standard for government IT.


OpenDoc Gains Ground in Belgium, India

OpenDocument made additional strides in establishing itself this week, as the Belgian government certified the OASIS format as the only acceptable standard for internal documents. In addition, OpenDoc backers are promoting the format in India at the IIT Delhi conference.


CityGML: An Open Standard for 3D City Models

CityGML is a common information model for representing 3D urban objects. It defines classes and relations for the most relevant topographic objects in cities and regional models with respect to their geometric, topological, semantic and appearance properties. "City" is broadly defined to include not just built structures, but also elevation, vegetation, water bodies, “sidewalk furniture” and more. Included are generalization hierarchies between thematic classes, aggregations, relationships between objects and spatial properties.


On the subject of double standards

Søren Thing Pedersen about standards and double standards


Danemark : le parlement vote pour les standards ouverts !

Formats Ouverts, June 3, 2006. La parlement danois a voté pour l'utilisation obligatoire des standards ouverts.


Denmark is Important Because...

Sam Hiser, June 05, 2006. The Danish Parlimentary Resolution (June 2, 2006) in favor of open software standards, while it doesn't call out ODF by name, is critical to the accelerated worldwide adoption of the OpenDocument Format because it will reinforce the definition of what is agreed to be an open software standard and reinforce just what the requirements of openness are.


Denmark mandates open standards by 2008

Søren Thing Pedersen, June 2, 2006. In dramatic fashion the Danish parliament unanimously agreed on making the use of open standards mandatory in national IT solutions and software by 2008 (or ASAP). The decision was made minutes before the parliament left for the summer break and after weeks of intense discussion. Søren provides video/audio from the Parliament session.


Denmark's Resolution on Open Standards - Updated

GROKLAW June 03 2006. Groklaw member elhaard sends us a bit more detail about the Danish resolution that passed yesterday. We put the story in News Picks. The motion is called "B 103" and all material about it (even Parliament transcripts) can be found at the Parliament's home page. It's only in Danish, though. So he helps us out again, translating the last publicly shown version of the resolution.


Looking for IT Leaders? Try Denmark

Jeff Kaplan, 1 June, 2006. There is big news about to break on the IT policy front, and it comes from Denmark.


Is ODF an Open Standard?

By David A. Wheeler. GROKLAW, February 09 2006


An Economic Basis for Open Standards

FLOSSPOLS Open Standards and Interoperability Report by Rishab Ghosh. December 2005.


John Palfrey: Open Standards in Massachusetts

Summary of RemarksDecember 14, 2005

MA and Open Standards and Interoperability

Berkman Center for Internet & Society hosted a two-hour discussion session on Open Standards and Interoperability. Our discussion was meant to be an extension of the work of the Open ePolicy Group. Panelists, including Steve Bratt, Chief Operating Officer W3C (World Wide Web Consortium), Doug Levin, Chief Executive Officer of Black Duck Software, Bob Sutor, Vice President of Standards and Open Source IBM Corporation, Tim Bray, Director of Web Technologies at Sun Microsystems, and John Palfrey, Executive Director of the Berkman Center, led the discussion, which involved comments from dozens of participants. Dan Bricklin and David Berlind were key contributors. The full event was recorded and is available online.


Roadmap for Open ICT Ecosystems

The Roadmap for Open ICT Ecosystems: a user-friendly guide for policymakers and technologists offerings tools for understanding, creating, and sustaining open information and communication technologies ecosystems. This is where we introduce the term openization.

Massachusetts and OpenDocument: A Brave New World?

Article by Andrew Updegrove. This article describes the history of both the process followed by the ITD as well as that of the OpenDocument OASIS Standard, summarizes and assesses the arguments for and against the amendments made by those that offered public comments, and finally seeks to evaluate the potential impact of the Massachusetts decision on further government information technology policy evolution around the world.

Where Open Standards Fit into the Application Integration Puzzle

Open standards and application integration are a logical fit since open standards aid in solving the application integration problem, accounting for the differences in formats and interfaces through common mechanisms that everyone can understand.

The Meaning of Open Standards

This paper develops the argument that many Information Technology standardization processes are in transition from being controlled by standards creators to being controlled by standards implementers. The users of standardized implementations also have rights that they wish addressed. Ten basic rights of standards creators, implementers and users are identified and quantified. Each of these ten rights represents an aspect of Open Standards. Only when all ten rights are supported will standards be open to all. Ken Krechmer, Fellow, International Center for Standards Research, University of Colorado, 2005.

Open source versus open standards

The term "open" has been used and abused by the purveyors of technology for a couple of decades now, so it should come as no surprise that technology users are taking their turn. Jonathan Schwartz, CNET