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News lets the community share announcements, press releases, and recommended news articles relevant to OpenDocument. (Educational materials that are not time-sensitive are listed at Articles and white papers.)

Malaysian government agency migrates to ODF

The Malaysian Administrative Modernization and Management Planning Unit (MAMPU) has announced that the agency will be migrating to office suite as well as adopt the OpenDocument Format (ODF). In addition, Microsoft Office is to be phased out by end of 2008. This decision is in line with the Malaysian Public Sector Open Source Master Plan, which calls for government agencies to reduce costs, increase freedom of choice and interoperability.

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When Standards Ain't Standards

"I am a big fan of the latest version of Microsoft Office, called Office 2007...

...ODF is also much simpler. It is functionally similar to OOXML, but comprises only 850 pages of code, compared to more than 6000 pages for OOXML.

It is not hard to believe, as many in the standards community do, that Microsoft's whole strategy is to further entrench its global dominance and freeze out competitors.

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Open Parliament petition launched in Europe

The Open Parliament was officially launched during a press conference held in the European Parliament and hosted by MEPs, David Hammerstein and Eva Lichtenberger. Speakers from the three signatory organisations presented the objectives of the petition and called for supporters to join them in the call for open access to parliament. OpenForum Europe, the European Software Market Association, and the Free Software Foundation Europe called on the EP to use open standards so that all citizens can participate in the democratic process.

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IBM Brings 'Microsoft-free' PCs to Europe

IBM has teamed up with Austrian and Polish system integrators to supply the emerging Eastern European and Russian business PC markets with systems based on Red Hat Linux and open standards-based productivity software. Under the deal, announced this week, IBM will work with Vienna-based VDEL and LX Polska, based in Poland, to sell systems based on what the companies call "Open Referent". The systems will be based on Red Hat Enterprise Linux Desktop, Lotus Notes, Lotus Sametime and Lotus Symphony.

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Microsoft Launches Document Interoperability Initiative

Microsoft announced the launch of its Document Interoperability Initiative, which is aimed at promoting user choice among document formats and expanded opportunity for developers, partners and competitors. On 6 March 2008, Microsoft hosted in Cambridge a number of independent software vendors (ISVs), including Novell Inc., Mark Logic Corp., Quickoffice Inc., DataViz Inc. and Nuance Communications Inc., to launch this collaborative, community-based initiative.

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