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From "Dennis E. Hamilton" <>
Subject RE: OOo, ODF 1.2 extended format and Word: is the possibility to open OOo generated file by word ed as bug?
Date Tue, 17 Jan 2012 03:03:17 GMT

I have no idea how get from a catch-22 between ODF 1.2 (latest), ODF 1.2 earlier, and down-level
ODF 1.1 consumers that are strict about it (like Microsoft Word 2007/2010) to this outburst
about LibreOffice.  There is no foundation for that departure into the stratosphere.

 - Dennis


True, the situation has been over-simplified and everyone who says not-us presumes it is some
other guys instead.  But that is not what analysis reveals.

For the record, simple documents written in ODF 1.2 (extended) from the Apache OpenOffice
developer build of 3.4.0 have the same down-level interop problem with Microsoft Office. 
A simple ODF 1.2 (not extended) document from OOo-dev 3.4.0, the last beta produced by Oracle,
also has the problem.

A simple test against the Microsoft Word ODF 1.1 consumer with *any* document from *any* of
these producers could have detected the problem.  

However, a simple document written in ODF 1.2 (not-extended) from 3.3.0 (Oracle
distribution) does *not* have the down-level interop problem.  Which means that, instead,
it is in violation of the ODF 1.2 manifest schema, which was changed after anticipatory claiming
of ODF 1.2 happened.  You will be thrilled to learn that Lotus Symphony 3.0.0 FP3 is in the
same boat: Word doesn't flinch, but a current ODF Conformance Checker will.  

My money is on those who realize that the schema is not the thing to be slavish about, especially
for an inconsequential retro-active provision, if the goal is least friction for interop with
their own down-level and other ODF 1.0/1.1 implementations.  It is clear that, with the confusion
this situation has caused here and in the interop efforts of actual users, the creation of
this retro-active provision in ODF 1.2 was a stupid move at the ODF TC.  I am embarrassed
that I didn't catch it there.  Basically Michael Brauer and I are the culprits.

My direct experience with senior LibreOffice developers is that they are acutely aware of
changes in ODF 1.2 that are causing needless down-level interop problems and they are attempting
to navigate that morass.  At Apache OpenOffice the development effort is just getting revivified
enough to where some of these same provisions can be dealt with.  It would be good to find
a common basis for navigating these shoals.  

-----Original Message-----
From: Rob Weir [] 
Sent: Monday, January 16, 2012 12:23
Subject: Re: OOo, ODF 1.2 extended format and Word: is the possibility to open OOo generated
file by word ed as bug?

[ ... ]

If a program does not meet user expectations then it is a bug.  If you
want to be compatible with Microsoft Office then you need to play by
their rules.  The existence of standards like ODF and OOXML does not
change the basic fact that interoperability is hard work.  It requires
testing.  It does not happen overnight. It is not merely the result of
an incantation that begins with the sacred syllables "ISO".

In any case Seeing responses like this from LibreOffice makes be very
optimistic about the future of Apache OpenOffice.  Whatever the cause,
the fact that LibreOffice ships with this problem shows either a
woefully inadequate QA program, or total indifference to real world
requirements.  Even testing a single LibreOffice document in Office
2007 would have shown this bug.  Is that too much to expect?

[ ... ]

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