updated 01:15 pm EST, Thu March 6, 2008
MS open document plans
Microsoft has launched what it calls the Document Interoperability Initiative, a program to test and improve how well certain document formats work across multiple platforms and operating systems. The company will host a series of lab events around the world for this purpose, and today met with other outfits such as Novell, Nuance and Quickoffice at a first event, which was set in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The focus of the meeting was on the open ODF format, most famously used in OpenOffice, and Microsoft's less popular Open XML standard, supported almost exclusively by the company's Office suites.
Notably, the DII program is extending concern beyond Windows XP or Vista systems to include not just Mac OS X Leopard, but Linux, and a variety of cellphone platforms including the iPhone, Palm OS, Symbian OS and Microsoft's own Windows Mobile.
Microsoft has tangentially released the v1.1 upgrade of its ODF/Open XML translator for Excel and PowerPoint. No specific improvements are listed, but it should have enhanced performance in various aspects.