[Nottingham] CVs, Linux, and amusement

Robert Postill nottingham at mailman.lug.org.uk
Fri May 23 15:57:01 2003

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Go Jon go!  Have your campaign to kill .doc format!  Perhaps we could
call you young RMS?  Perhaps even you could grow a beard?  Maybe even
spend a few years locked in a room writing your replacement for word on
your own a la the great man and emacs?

Jesting aside Jon does have a point in that here's a format that we all
grumble about.  If memory serves there was an article when the guys who
wrote OOo declared their distaste for .doc because it included the
run-time word memory structures in the file (generally top-notch
naughties for those who don't write a lot of code).  If that's true then
as a community we should revile it for what is, technically pants.  One
of the best things about Linux is it promotes open standards as well as
free as in speech software.  It would be great if we could move to an
XML-based format (I think OASIS is working on an OOo based standard as
we speak).

The flip side of that is that imposing a standard is no better than
being M$. If we pout and tut and say you can't be free to give me
information in your best-expressed format then really that's *my*
problem for being too arrogant to accommodate you. =20

It's a fine line to tread between being obstinate and being principled.=20
I'd far rather be pragmatic and say that I'll do my best to help you out
so that when your next MS licensing bill hits you ask me how I manage to
keep communicating with people without paying all that money.  Word
documents are going to linger for a bit and we had better get used to
them and the MS-XML stunt they're peddling now.

Jon, I'd also point out that said UNIX systems company (if I'm thinking
of the same one) has both the OOo project and have a "PC file viewer"
product for just such a purpose that ships in my copy of its v8 10/00
media kit.  Which means it's been playing well with others for more than
2 years.  So they don't need to discriminate between those who can
afford to have their products at home and those who don't.  Just on the
merit of the application.

On Fri, 2003-05-23 at 14:44, Hussein Jodiyawalla wrote:
> Jon Masters wrote:
> >1). I am instantly put off and think ``now why would a UNIX Systems
> >    company whose systems do not and cannot run Microsoft Office ask for=
> >    Word document?''. This immediately asks people to go somewhere else =
> >    quickly as possible or to wonder why said company is running M$.
> >
> >2). I send a PDF with accompanying explanation.
> >
> Or 3). Send it in plain text, like they want you to Jon...
> Hussein Jodiyawalla
Robert Postill
Tel:07968 801326

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