As we come close to the wire


In 9 days time, all the countries that are “P” (Participating) members SC34 of the ISO will have to revert with their votes on ECMA 376 Office Open XML. In Asia, the P member countries are India, China, Korea, Japan, Malaysia, Singapore, Australia and New Zealand. Of these Malaysia and Australia abstained in the September 2, 2007 vote, the others voted to Disapprove and the Little Red Dot voted Approve. It was a really sad day for me when Singapore stood out like a sore thumb then.

But, Singapore now has the chance to redeem itself and possibly reconsider the September vote. My friends who are supportive of OOXML are trying their darn best to ensure that if Singapore does reconsider it vote, that it remains as Approve. And they have every right to want to see that – but only if it is done honestly and fairly.

Somehow, I feel that they have not made a good and compelling case yet. I think Rob’s post, while long, says a lot.

By all means, ECMA, bring back the OOXML proposal. There are so many issues with the proposal as it is today that any decent and honest entity would do the Right Thing (TM). What’s the Right Thing in this case? Withdraw the proposal. It might be embarassing, but it is the Right Thing.

Go off, work on the proposal, fix the issues, then return. I will champion it iff the final product is fully defined, all issues raised fully and completely addressed. No hidden agenda here, my friends from ECMA and Microsoft. All I want is good, quality standards. That means that you cannot have Standards@Internet Speed as ECMA has on their front page. You cannot have Standards@Internet Speed if it is 6000+ pages long, plus 2300 pages of edits etc etc.

I am all for multiple standards. The more the merrier, so long as they are well defined and fully specified.

My suspicion is that some KPIs are not going to be met!

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