Yesterday the Minister of the Cabinet Office in the UK, Francis Maude, announced that the UK government adopts the Open Document Format (ODF) standard for documents that are presented for collaboration and interaction. Two other standards, PDF/A and HTML, are chosen for viewing government information.
I admire the UK government for this decision. ODF is the established standard for documents. It is used in OpenOffice , in LibreOffice, and also in Microsoft Office. Gone are the days of the battle about OOXML and the debates about ODF versus OOXML. That's the stuff of last decade. The UK government now made the step into the future direction supporting and requiring an open standard for document formats that is widely available and implemented in a number of competing products and solutions.
I wish other governments would be fast in following this example. With increasing online collaboration, with using Cloud technologies, with moving to increased automation, the use of ODF is the right move for promoting interoperability, competition and choice.
I have been using ODF implementations for many years now. I am working with odt, odp and ods files on a daily basis. I am highly satisfied – and I am sure that clear decisions in favour of ODF will push further innovation around ODF.
So great news from the UK. I hope they will spread fast and wide.