Open XML links for 02-04-2008

Indexing DOCX files with Lucene in PHP. Maarten Balliauw has another great post on working with Open XML from PHP. This time he takes a look at how to use the Zend framework’s PHP port of the Lucene indexing and search API. As always, Maarten provides very detailed explanations and full source code.

Open XML video gallery on YouTube. A new page on YouTube will start aggregating video content for Open XML, including hands-on demos of various implementations, interviews, and other information. My colleague Jean-Christophe Cimetiere has already posted videos of iPhone and Mac OS X support, and there are more coming soon.

Redmond Developer News article. Michael Desmond has an article this week in which he discusses the dev management perspective on the move to XML-based formats with Peter O’Kelly of the Burton Group.

Upcoming developer conferences. Office Devcon 2008 is coming to San Jose next week, and Wouter Van Vugt has some information about the sessions he and Ted Pattison will be doing there. Later this spring, TechEd 2008 will return to Orlando in June, and Gray Knowlton has some thoughts on what to expect.

OSS fans come in many flavors. Rick Jelliffe’s blog has a link to a fun Datamation article by Bruce Byfield entitled A Field Guide to Free Software Supporters.

Comments (3)

  1. hAl says:

    You seem to have missed the top ten of worst responses on the OOXML disposition from the ODF alliance:

  2. dmahugh says:

    Yes, I hadn’t seen that.

    Reacting to anonymous FUD based on out-of-context snippets from the dispositions isn’t something I have a lot of time for these days, but I’ll share a few of my own opinions below, and if somebody is willing to publicly acknowledge their authorship of that document I’d be glad to discuss with them in more detail …

    #10 – this gets to the question of whether the semantic meaning of XML elements should be determined by the element name alone, or by the element name plus context.  Apparently the anonymous author of that document disagrees with the disposition on that one, but it’s a debate that was going on before DIS 29500, and will continue long after it.  Everyone’s entitled to an opinion.

    #9 – this is clearly an error, so I assume the project editor will get a correction out.  (So 2 out of 3522 didn’t get a response, dropping the total to a little more than 99.9%.)

    #8 – another one where there is debate about a schema design issue.  The author has one opinion, others have another opinion.

    #7 – this is a misrepresentation of what’s going on there, regarding legacy hashing algorithms.  Nothing new has been introduced — there are existing documents that use those algorithms, and the disposition notes that and also recommends different algorithms going forward.  So what?

    #6 – an emotional little rant.  To be honest, I don’t follow what they’re suggesting, if anything.  They hate VML; got it.

    #5 – apparently they think objects shouldn’t be embedded in documents, period.  The fact that such functionality has proven extremely popular speaks for itself.

    #4 – this is the same old saw about how the content of existing documents doesn’t matter.  The owners of those documents disagree, and would rather not have arbitrary changes render their documents invalid.

    #3 – that disposition seems to provide exactly what was asked for: ISO 8601 compatibility and support for dates before 1900.  ODF Alliance wishes the disposition went further and rendered all existing documents invalid; their fight is with the owners of those documents, apparently, many of who have asked that such changes not be made.

    #2 – more misrepresentation.  The first referenced disposition simply agrees that the project editor should assure that the examples match the schemas, with expressing any "conclusion on a question over precedence between the text and the schemas."  the second referenced disposition states "Those fragments are intended to be the same as the corresponding information in the zip file. However, if they are not, the ZIP file versions should be considered the definitive versions."

    #1 – naive perspective there, in my opinion: Open XML documents do exist, in large and growing numbers.  If there are truly no Open XML documents, then why are so many vendors supporting Open XML in their products already?  And why is the Office Compatibility Pack such as popular download?  I have a couple thousand Open XML documents on my hard drive at the moment, and there are millions like me.  The existing documents matter, and that’s at the heart of almost everything on this list.

    Oh, regarding the "Bonus Worst" … those are two cases where the project editor said, in essence, "here’s how we propose making these changes" and it’s interesting to note that the ODF Alliance has no complaints about the proposed changes at all.  Rather, they seem to be doubting the changes will take place.  That question will be answered definitely in the final revised spec, so I don’t see any reason to speculate at this point.

    That’s all just my opinion, of course.  Overall, that’s a pretty weak document.  It’s easy to understand why the author wishes to remain anonymous.