Last month we reported about UK government’s plans for switching to software which can produce open-source files in the “open document format” (ODF). UK government believes that they can cut costs by doing this way. Microsoft is opposing this proposal related to sharing and collaborating with government documents. The government proposes to mandate Open Document format (ODF) and exclude the most widely supported and used open standard for document formats, Open XML (OOXML). We believe this will cause problems for citizens and businesses who use office suites which don’t support ODF, including many people who do not use a recent version of Microsoft Office or, for example, Pages on iOS and even Google Docs. Microsoft Office has supported ODF since 2007, but adoption of OOXML has been more widespread amongst other products than ODF. This move has the potential to impact businesses selling to government, who may be forced to ...

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Now that Microsoft has released Office 365 to the public, they need to offer a reason why it is worth small businesses to pay $6 every month instead of using the free Google Docs. One of the reasons, offered up on Microsoft’s Sharepoint business site, is that Google Docs do a very poor job of preserving the look and feel of a document, including removing important information such as a Confidential watermark for example. They write: People expect existing documents from their desktops to look exactly the same when shared in the cloud. In this demo, you will see completely different results when the same document is viewed using Word Web App vs. Google Documents. The demo can be seen at Microsoft’s website here, where it complains of missing graphics, watermarks and poor formatting. We have included the comparison above as an animated GIF which makes it clear how much ...

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