OASIS Mailing List ArchivesView the OASIS mailing list archive below
or browse/search using MarkMail.


Help: OASIS Mailing Lists Help | MarkMail Help



   Re: [xml-dev] What should be open/free? (Was: Low-end Office 11won't do

[ Lists Home | Date Index | Thread Index ]

I think Bill has hit the nail on the head, but still:

On Sun, 13 Apr 2003 AndrewWatt2000@aol.com wrote:

> assumptions are differing substantially and that further careful thought
> might be in order.

For sure: many people make the assumption that by paying for a piece of
software from Microsoft, they are actually buying (rather than leasing) a
tool that they can use to manipulate their data however they like. They
seldom realise what they are paying for is temporary permission to lock
their data up in a format that is hard to move elsewhere at a later date.
XML should have changed all that.

> If Microsoft opens up its XML then it is making or being asked to make ... if
> my set of assumptions has any validity ... a much more radical change in
> approach than you seem to assume that it is.

Essentially by opening up and using XML, Microsoft should be making their
file formats parseable by the masses, meaning they then compete on "fit
for purpose" or "quality of product" rather than on "you're locked into
our platform and we won't let you move elsewhere".

The proprietary lock-in argument is an old and boring one. The idea that
i's not lock-in but vendor buy-in puts an amusing spin on it. As you say:

> I wasn't making the "joint ownership" point with a view to exploring
> this, but what do you imagine that you have ever "bought" from
> Microsoft? Or any other software "vendor"?

I'm under no illusion: all I ever buy from them is temporary permission to
use their software. That's why I only use their software to save files in
as close to platform-independent standards as possible ;-)

> So, with respect, your analogy of a spade (genuinely bought) breaks
> down.

But if the spade is (as I suggested) leased, the analogy still stands: the
idea that by paying for (use of) a product, the vendor is somehow given
shared ownership of the output from that product is ridiculous.

I'll stop ranting now!


Andrew Savory                                Email: andrew@luminas.co.uk
Managing Director                              Tel:  +44 (0)870 741 6658
Luminas Internet Applications                  Fax:  +44 (0)700 598 1135
This is not an official statement or order.    Web:    www.luminas.co.uk


News | XML in Industry | Calendar | XML Registry
Marketplace | Resources | MyXML.org | Sponsors | Privacy Statement

Copyright 2001 XML.org. This site is hosted by OASIS