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Microsoft Gets in Touch with its Softer Side

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The Good Microsoft – a side of its personality the European Commission has helped it discover – is suddenly interested in “promoting user choice among document formats” – swear that’s what it said – and has kicked off a Document Interoperability Initiative in company with Novell, Mark Logic, QuickOffice, DataViz and Nuance Communications to test and refine format implementation interoperability, create format implementation test suites and create templates designed for optimal interoperability.

This so-called Cambridge lab, named after where the companies met in Massachusetts, is supposed to test interoperability between existing implementations of Microsoft’s Office Open XML (OOXML) and the Open Document Format (ODF) on various platforms and devices including Linux, Mac OS X Leopard, iPhone, Palm OS, Symbian and Windows Mobile.

We’ll save you Microsoft’s 12 Step cant.

There are supposed to be other labs in Korea and Germany in the next few weeks.

Microsoft also released a 1.1 translator between ODF and OOXML for Excel and PowerPoint.

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