I’ve thought about posting here several times over the last many months and I even have several drafts that never saw the light but this just keeps getting pushed down too far on my priority list to happen. However, I have to react to the buzz I’m discovering on my return from a week off.
Indeed, it is with quite a bit of astonishment that I read about Alex Brown’s frustration over Microsoft lack of interest in implementing ISO/IEC 29500 (OOXML). In the burgeoning comment sections following his post, Alex writes:
> The outcome that many had predicted, yet you
> insisted would not occur
Oh? I don’t recall making predictions about Microsoft’s behaviour? URL please!
Well, let me give you a link to a prediction I made! In my post What Microsoft’s track record tells us about OOXML’s future of March 25, 2008 I wrote:
They can, and I predict will, ignore all these additions which are optional and stick to what they have. The only reason they were added was to remove reasons for National Bodies to vote against OOXML.
So, here we are. Two years later, Microsoft has done exactly that and Alex Brown is finally seeing the light.
One can only hope that the standards community will have at least learned a lesson from this sad story: you simply cannot take control away from a vendor who has a monopoly and isn’t willing to give it up through a mere standardization process.