Microsoft Office

Open Document Formats: A Successful Transition?

Some Background Years ago I wrote about my interest in switching away from proprietary binary blob formats (primarily things like Microsoft .doc, .xls & .ppt formats) and instead move to their more open alternatives (OpenDocument .odt, .ods & .odp and Office Open XML .docx, .xlsx & .pptx). The genesis for this drive was an article by Vincent Cerf where he was talking about the problems around reading these proprietary formats in the future, when the original vendors are either out of business or no longer interested in supporting them.

An Experiment in Transitioning to Open Document Formats

Recently I read an interesting article by Vint Cerf, mostly known as the man behind the TCP/IP protocol that underpins modern Internet communication, where he brought up a very scary problem with everything going digital. I’ll quote from the article (Cerf sees a problem: Today’s digital data could be gone tomorrow – posted June 4, 2013) to explain: One of the computer scientists who turned on the Internet in 1983, Vinton Cerf, is concerned that much of the data created since then, and for years still to come, will be lost to time.