Open XML links for 03-07-2007


Cairo University’s Mohammad Nour El-din Marwan has a great post on “Generating Dynamic OpenXML Docx Files” that describes a template-driven approach for generating data-driven Open XML word-processing documents.


Hong Kong’s Office of the Government CIO has published a proposed government interoperability framework and related analysis that takes a pragmatic look at how to balance freedom of choice and interoperability. They acknowledge that the Office binary formats (doc, xls, ppt) are de-facto standards, and openly consider Open XML as an emerging international standard.


Speaking of balanced and reasonable perspectives on document formats, Mindjet Labs has announced support for ODF exports a Mindjet customer has written an OpenOffice export from Mindjet’s flagship product, MindManager.  (I misunderstood that it was a customer and not Mindjet who had developed this – Doug) Don Campbell has more info.


In a similar vein, Novell has announced Open XML support for OpenOffice. They’re doing this by taking advantage of the Open XML Translator’s pluggable architecture, which currently supports word processing documents, and Novell will integrate the spreadsheet/presentation translators when those become available. Brian Jones has more information, and Stephen McGibbon has some great screen shots that show exactly what it looks like in action.


My Australian colleague Andrew Coates delivered a presentation at OzFox in Sydney recently on creating Open XML documents in Visual FoxPro. I found Andrew’s code samples interesting, not least because they combined the world I used to live in with the world I live in these days, evangelizing Open XML.


I’ve had a couple of people recently email me about the fact that the OpenXmlDeveloper site (which I moderate) didn’t have a download link for the Ecma spec. What were we thinking? I guess it’s a good sign that we’re not just preaching to the choir any more, when people start showing up who haven’t downloaded the spec. Thanks for the suggestion, guys: we’ve added a link, and if you’re really in a big hurry here’s the Ecma download page right here.


Next post, I’ll get back to the topic of Open XML’s custom schema support, with a detailed look at how custom XML markup (content tagging) works in Open XML documents.


Comments (6)

  1. Wouter says:

    Might I note that the spec is really un-easy to find using the straight up google approach. Some ‘current’ pages are pointing to the final draft spec.

    like the following google:

    http://www.google.nl/search?hl=nl&q=tc45+current&meta=

    which leeds to:

    http://www.ecma-international.org/news/TC45_current_work/TC45-2006-50.htm

    Which is not current, while the URL does imply this sort-of. And who reads the content of the page anyway if the url says ‘current’?

  2. dmahugh says:

    Good point, Wouter — I hadn’t noticed that.  I wonder what the long-term plan is for those interim versions on the Ecma site; I’ll try to find out.

    All the more reason to use the link on OpenXmlDeveloper! :-)

  3. orcmid says:

    Hey Doug, there is an official link to ECMA-376 materials with the December 2006 approved form of the specs (with nice covers, etc.).

    http://www.ecma-international.org/publications/standards/Ecma-376.htm

    (and I see they are now listing it as also ISO/IEC DIS 29500 on that list (scroll all the way to the bottom):

    http://www.ecma-international.org/publications/standards/Standard.htm

  4. orcmid says:

    The openxmldeveloper link is to an old draft.  You should use the link in the preceding comment.

  5. dmahugh says:

    Thanks, Dennis, I’ve updated it.