Wow, I've been trying to pull together my next "Intro to SpreadsheetML" post for over two weeks now but it's pretty slow going when you only get 10 mins at a time to focus on it. I thought it would have been ready last week but other things kept coming up. This week in particular is super busy, as there are three separate events going on out here at Microsoft that I'm participating in. That combined with the Office 14 planning and specing means I haven't had much time to focus on pulling together my next SpreadsheetML post. Sorry about that folks.
I had a bit of free time this morning before heading into the office, so wanted to take some time to mention that today we're kicking off a new community site to help better organize the large number of people interested in OpenXML. We already have OpenXMLDeveloper.org which is a community of developers programming against OpenXML. The next step is that we're starting a site called openxmlcommunity.org where customers and partners can talk about the formats and share thoughts, ideas. etc.
There are a number of big things we've seen lately which led to the idea of creating a community site. We have over 300 other companies and partners who care deeply about OpenXML and who've already signed up to be part of the community. Go check it out for yourself. There are a ton of quotes up there from various organizations that have been positively impacted by our move to an open standard format for Office documents.
For example, as I've pointed out in earlier posts, the number of people with access to the new formats isn't just limited to Office 2007 customers. Here are the other ways we're seeing people using OpenXML:
- Older versions of Office – As you all know, folks who have older versions of Office can download a free update that allows them to read and write the open xml formats. While the downloads have only been available for about 6 months, they are already the 2nd most popular download on Microsoft.com (second only to IE 7). There are well over 4 million downloads to date.
- OpenOffice - Thanks to Novell, you can read and write the OpenXML formats with OpenOffice. The Sun folks are also involved as they move from the XSLT approach to a more native support.
- WordPerfect - Corel has announced support for OpenXML in an upcoming release of their office suite. (http://blogs.zdnet.com/Berlind/?p=226)
- Palm OS – Documents To Go brings OpenXML support to smartphone and PDA devices powered by the Palm operating system (http://www.dataviz.com/products/documentstogo/premium/index.html?redirect=hp_dxtg_palm)
- Mac – NeoOffice brings OpenXML support to the mac (http://trinity.neooffice.org/modules.php?name=News&file=article&sid=117)
- MindMapping – Mindjet's MindManager allows you to follow the logical workflow of first brainstorming, then creating a document outline, and then writing you document. You can brainstorm your idea in MindManager, and then convert those into a wordProcessingML document. (http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,1895,2092894,00.asp)
- OpenXML Writer- The folks up at OpenXML.biz have build a free open source text editor called "OpenXML Writer" that allows you to edit WordprocessingML files. (http://www.openxml.biz/OpenXMLWriter.html)
- Gnumeric – Gnumeric is an open source spreadsheet application that was one of the first applications out there to show support for SpreadsheetML. (http://www.gnome.org/projects/gnumeric/)
- Web Development (PHP) – There is an open source project up on codeplex where they are creating a set of PHP classes which allow you to read and write SpreadsheetML files. (http://www.codeplex.com/PHPExcel)
- Java Developers – There is a project up on sourceforge where they are creating a set of Java APIs to make programming against the openxml formats much easier for Java developers. (http://sourceforge.net/projects/openxml4j/)
- Data Reporting – In Monarch V.9.0 from Datawatch you have the ability to create reports of your data using SpreadsheetML (http://www.datawatch.com/datawatch/news.asp?display=detail&id=128)
- XML to PDF – Altsoft XML2PDF server 2007 supports the import of WordprocessingML files (http://www.theserverside.net/news/thread.tss?thread_id=43989)
- Word and Character Counting on Mac – Word Counter 2.2.1 is an application for Mac OS X, and it supports a variety of file formats, including WordprocessingML (http://osxfreeware.blogspot.com/2007/02/word-counter-221.html)
- Convert docx to simple html – The docx converter allows you to transform WordprocessingML documents into either plain text or simple html directly from their website. (http://docx-converter.com/)
Those are a few of the tools I've been keeping track of, but that's just the beginning. Now we have the openxmlcommunity site which will helps other folks building OpenXML tools to share their thoughts and ideas.
Well, that took a bit longer to say than I'd initially planned… now I'm late for work. (BTW, I've set this up to delay post as the openxmlcommunity site isn't supposed to go live until later on this afternoon)