Subject: Re: Mass. Bill to Block OpenDocument Format Standard
From: "Stephen J. Turnbull" <>
Date: Sat, 05 Nov 2005 15:12:08 +0900

>>>>> "Marshall" == Marshall W Van Alstyne <marshall@MIT.EDU> writes:

    Marshall> At the same time, we need to carefully ask when
    Marshall> governments *should* set technology standards?  How
    Marshall> great was analog HDTV in Japan and ADA here in the US?

Analog HDTV was all about structural impediments to trade, not about
technology per se.  Ada (I assume you're referring to Babbage's
girlfriend's namesake) was entirely appropriate: the government,
specifically the DoD, set a standard for goods it was procuring.
That's what open source is all about, no?  It was not a very good
standard, and today we have a good grasp of why not.  But that's a
different question.

I think that the OpenDocument Format is similarly a good use of
standards.  As long as the standard is enforced, it will be possible
to translate it to something better later.

School of Systems and Information Engineering
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