Keep The Important Things In Mind


Last week was one of the more stressful weeks of my life. The result has been a reminder of what is important. My father went through open heart surgery and has come out of it fine, but there was a day of “complications” which added a wrinkle or two to my face.


I am certainly more aware this week that Open XML and ODF are doc format standards, that work is important, but that none of it is even remotely close to the top of my priority list.


I have to note that the nerd in me was completely impressed with the technology involved with the whole experience. The micro-processor has made such an incredible difference. The processing power required to design the equipment used, to design and test the drugs, to even imagine the crazy stuff the doctors were able to do – never mind the monitoring and care following the surgery – simply amazing.


Anyway – I’ll jump down from my high horse now and get back into the slugfest over document formats…but with a bit more perspective.


Comments (7)

  1. Wu MingShi says:

    Glad to hear that your father is getting better now. By the way, you forgotten the ‘t’ in ‘open heart’.

  2. ben says:

    "I am certainly more aware this week that Open XML and ODF are doc format standards, that work is important, but that none of it is even remotely close to the top of my priority list."

    This is very sad. Why did Microsoft try to fast-track Open XML with no regard to the costs. Would it not been easier to let Open XML remain an EXMA standard for now and better invest the energy to provide the best implementation of OpenDocumentFormat?

    How much suffering, poison and despair evolves from these "do evil" moves. It may lead to a heart attack or two.

  3. jasonmatusow says:

    Wu – Thank you for your kind wishes.

    Ben – Wow! did you ever take my comments and go in a poor direction with them. Sorry sir – my top priority is my family and the health of those closest to me. Period.

    As for your insinuation that bringing Open XML to ISO/IEC through the Fast Track process as "evil" – absurd. Are you aware that PDF just used the same process? And that many other specs have used the process in the past? And that the PAS process used by ODF is not dissimilar in intent – to move specs more quickly throught he process as there were industry concerns about 3year+ standardization cycels?

    Aside from that – governments and customers ASKED us to bring it to ISO/IEC. The IDABC made recommendations for this, and once ODF was an ISO spec, the nature of requests increased from governments for Open XML to do the same.

    At this point, your comments are rather academic – we are where we are. In the end, openness of document formats has become a huge issue for the industry and the relative benefits for consumers over the long-run from all of this attention and work will manifest themselves over time. Great industry competition, more solutions, greater data portability, etc. etc. – none of which are because of ODF or Open XML – rather due to the extended implications of XML.  

    Jason

  4. Ben says:

    "Aside from that – governments and customers ASKED us to bring it to ISO/IEC. The IDABC made recommendations for this, and once ODF was an ISO spec, the nature of requests increased from governments for Open XML to do the same."

    Say, they rejected your format with a reason.

    Of course Microsoft could take the simple road to just support the existing ISO format and also support its own standard. No European IDABC committee member asked you to stuff commitees, upgrade banana republics to P-membership, submit immature monster specs to fast-track, the whole behaviour shows how bad the case for your format actually is.

    Rather care about your family than serve a bad cause for the money. Do you know how many persons are so outraged about the company policy of Microsoft? How they hate Microsoft to bribe their government officials and edit their laws and regulations?

  5. jasonmatusow says:

    Ben, you should spend some time reading my blog posts in the past. I’m not going to rehash all these old arguments. If you want to understand what happened with Sweden – you should read about it. Second, the blinders you have on about how standards bodies work does not do you credit. Both sides have "stuffed" committees with – I know this is hard to grasp – parties who share their opinions. Do you really think Oracle or Red Hat had a document format care in the world other than orthoganal industry competitive reasons for jumping into the V1 committee? Hmm? How about IBM and its wholly-owned subsidiary both having a vote in Italy? The problem for you in this arugment with me is that I’m fine with IBM and their partners doing that. They were using the system to acheive their industry competitive goal. You are taking a moral position that is not based in either reality or fact.

    As for my employ by Microsoft – I’ve been honored to have the opportunity to do the work I do. I wrote a piece about this a while back as well – you might consider taking the time to read it.

    Sorry that we are not seeming to find any common ground here.

    Jason

  6. Jason, in fact there is not comparision. GReat to hear that your father surgery has gone well. That is by far the most important thing. Everything else, including openXML of course, is at an absolutly different priotities level.

  7. Jason,

    I’m really glad your dad is ok.  If he remembers me, tell him I said hi!

    Sally