It seems like my little thought experiment has touched a nerve. Scoble, Dare Obasanjo, and Randy Holloway all push back, amazingly enough all making the same argument: how can I be against duplication in office-document XML format while at the same time being mixed up in the Atom Project? The argument is fallacious, but at least Robert and Randy made it in grown-up, polite terms, leaving the childish name-calling to Dare. Now, as for RSS and Atom: When I came on the scene in 2003, RSS was already hopelessly fragmented, and there was exactly zero chance of any of the large-egoed thin-skinned proponents of the various versions deciding to make nice with each other. Atom is precisely an attempt to reduce the number of vocabularies that implementors feel they have to support. Turning to the office-document space: right now the world has exactly one finished, delivered, standardized, totally-unencumbered, multiply-implemented XML-based office document format. You are the guys who want to introduce another, incompatible one. And I think that’s OK; but restrict your invention to the specialized Microsoft stuff that ODF can’t do, and don’t re-invent the basics. Why is this controversial?

author · Dad · software · colophon · rights
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November 28, 2005
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