20 March 2007

ODF Now Free (as in Beer)

There is a certain irony in the fact that the OpenDocument Format, that essence of office suite freedom, has been locked up as a proprietary document costing the princely sum of 342 Swiss Francs.

Well, it's now been liberated - at least in the beery sense. You still can't do anything daringly with it, like change it; but since it is meant to be a standard, I suppose that's not totally unreasonable.

Be warned, though: its 728 pages are not for the those of a delicate disposition (but are, at least, better than the 6000 pages from Microsoft's rival OOXML offering.) (Via Rob Weir.)


Sam said...

Beg to differ, Glyn.

You can change the ODF spec any time you want by joining the OpenDocument Foundation on the OASIS ODF TC.

Make an intelligent proposal for features you need in the format specification, gather a consensus and presto.

The beauty of ODF is its development process is totally open to the public -- not just to paying members of OASIS.

Glyn Moody said...

Well, that seems a slightly generous interpretation of what "change" means: I had in mind something closer to delete and/or paste. But then maybe I'm just limited by my short-term view of things.

I do, however, accept that it's an open standard - and that this matters.