Microsoft Having Trouble Getting Office Open XML Standard Approved
Its important to note that this move is not the same as rejection. Instead, the IOS said, in effect, that it needs more time to evaluate this application.
Extended evaluation needs to take into account and investigate negative comments made during the initial voting process for the standard.
Microsoft is casting a chin-up posture, saying that if a second vote occurs early next year, the IOS will approve.
Independent observers say this is far from a done deal, however. Approval must be granted by two-thirds of voting national standards bodies, as well as three-quarters of all voting ISO members.
The ISO says both intial votes failed.
The proposal won the support of 74 percent of voting members -- just shy of the required number. But only 53 percent of the voting P-members supported the proposal, well short of the required 67 percent.
The big roadblock seems to be Afnor, French Association for Standardization.
"Afnor, wants to tear the proposal into two parts: a "core" part, which it wants to see converged over the course of three years with the competing Open Document Format (ODF), already an ISO standard, and an "extensions" part dealing with compatibility with legacy documents in proprietary formats," explains Peter Sayer of the IDG News Service.
Sayer notes that Frederic Couchet, spokesman for APRIL, the French Association for the Promotion and Research of Free Computing, supported Afnor's suggestion of combining parts of OOXML to ODF.
"The OOXML format contains significant design flaws," and it will be difficult to correct them "other than by starting again from scratch, or by enriching the already existing standard, Open Document Format," Sayer quotes Couchet as saying earlier today.
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