Get your facts straight about the Opendocument Format

Here is a great article on Linux Journal about the new Opendocument file format. For those who dont know much about this, think about the word .doc files that you have might have been using all this time. Opendocument is an alternate file format similar to .doc, for storing your word processing documents.

Opendocument file format is supported natively by a number of Office applications like OpenOffice2, StarOffice, KOffice, Abiword, eZ publish, IBM Workplace, Knomos case management, Scribus DTP, TextMaker and Visioo Writer.

Read the article I just mentioned above. It is written for lay persons, and mention several interesting facts.

  • Did you know that scientists “couldn’t read magnetic tapes from the 1976 Viking landings on Mars? That is just about 30 years ago! (Link to article)

  • Did you know that the government of the state of Massachusetts has mandated use of Opendocument for all government documents created after Jan 1, 2007? (Link to their FAQ)

  • Did you know that the latest version of Microsoft Office doesn’t allow you to open .doc files created 10 years ago?

If the world stops using the .doc format today and shifts to Opendocument, you will have a wide variety of office applications working over a wide variety of hardware and operating system. Some of these office applications are Free, and some of these free office applications work on Free operating systems like Linux or FreeBSD! You no longer would have to depend upon a monopoly bully like Microsoft for your computing needs, which forces you to upgrade your software, even if you dont need to.

Just think of what such a change can bring to the world! Making affordable but critical software available all over the world.

 
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