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Links 22/05/2008: 14 Million Downloads This Year for Famelix (GNU/Linux); Another Linux-Based Media Centre

Posted in News Roundup at 11:48 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

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  1. LinuxIsFun said,

    May 23, 2008 at 2:05 am



    The founders of the Digital Standards Organization, and others, will sign the Hague Declaration on 21 May 2008 in the Hague. The signing ceremony will be held in the Dutch Royal Library.

    Any updates on this….???????????????

  2. Roy Schestowitz said,

    May 23, 2008 at 2:10 am


    Nothing that I’ve come across in the past couple of days. However, some interesting articles crop up about the EU’s reaction to Microsoft’s policy (they don’t say “embrace”) on ODF.

    There have also been some interesting E-mails on the ODF Discussion List, such as this one from half an hours ago:

    On Thu, May 22, 2008 at 7:37 PM, marbux wrote:

    > The more interesting part to me was Phipps’ closing:

    > “Of course, I might also reflect on the fact they are finally doing
    > exactly what Stephe Walli said they ought to do to kill ODF.

    This is potentially so huge I can’t even get my mind around it. Why would Microsoft do this? What is in it for them? How will they seek to turn it to their advantage?

    Some suggestions as to why:

    1) because they are being investigated by the EU for their coercion in getting OOXML passed.

    2) because they want to extend, embrace, and extinguish:


    3) because they recognize that they have lost some important ground the format wars, and that governments really do resent being forced to use MOOXML the way that Microsoft forced it on them with proposed ISO 29500.

    4) because they succeeded in using dirty procedural tricks to get MOOX approved as an ISO standard, and now they see that they need to get Microsoft reps on standards bodies if they are going to control and ultimately subvert those standards bodies as they did with ISO.

    IMHO, we really need to all bookmark Stephen Walli’s blog below, and read it frequently, and maybe even read it aloud to one one another occasionally at meetings, because we are not out of the dark as long as Microsoft has billions to burn to defend its monopoly. I have often heard it said that the rational monopoly will, at some point, be willing to spend the provable future value of the company minus one dollar defending its monopoly status. They owe it to their shareholders to be as vicious as we all know that they have been for decades now.

    > If one reads the linked piece from 2005 by former Microsoft exec
    > Stephen Walli, > < http://stephesblog.blogs.com/my_weblog/2005/12/how_microsoft_s.html>,

    Let’s all remember what Microsoft did in staking the ISO vote; and how it packed rooms to block out Sun and IBM participation in Spain. We have one an important procedural step, but the competition for open document standards is only just now beginning. Please remember, too, what a Microsoft Exec once said about stacking panels:


    Thanks to Roy Schestowitz for uncovering and posting that revealing “Evangelism is war” presentation by James Plamondon, Technical Evangelist, Microsoft Developer Relations Group, which is linked above.

    Expect more procedural tricks from Microsoft. Exercise caution in watching meeting agendas and lists of participants. Here is a cut-and-paste from Roy Schestowitz’s posting of Microsoft Evangelist James Plamondon’s screed on how to stack panels:


    I have mentioned before the “stacked panel.” Panel discussions naturally favor alliances of relatively weak partners — our usual opposition. For example, an “unbiased” panel on OLE vs. OpenDoc would contain representatives of the backers of OLE (Microsoft) and the Backers of OpenDoc (Apple, IBM, Novell, WordPerfect, OMG, etc.). Thus, we find ourselves outnumbered in almost every “naturally occurring” panel debate.

    A stacked panel, on the other hand, is like a stacked deck: it is packed with people who, on the face of things, should be neutral, but who are in fact strong supporters of our technology. The key to stacking a panel is being able to choose the moderator. Most conference organizers allow the moderator to select die panel, so if you can pick the moderator, you win. Since you can’t expect representatives of our competitors to speak on your behalf, you have to get the moderator to agree to having only “independent ISVs” on the panel. No one from Microsoft or any other formal backer of the competing technologies would be allowed -just ISVs who have to use this stuff in the “real world.” Sounds marvellously independent doesn’t it? In feet, it allows us to stack the panel with ISVs that back our cause. Thus, the “independent” panel ends up telling the audience that our technology beats the others hands down. Get the press to cover this panel, and you’ve got a major win on your hands.
    Finding a moderator is key to setting up a stacked panel


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