ConsultingTimes.com: The OpenOffice Rosetta Stone (Star/OpenOffice Conversions Put to the Test)

“The question thus becomes, “Can we escape the clutches
of Microsoft Office, but still communicate with the captives who
are left behind?” To find the answer, we ran the StarOffice 6 beta
through a series of conversion tests, to see how it handled import
and export of documents, spreadsheets, and presentations.

If you’re looking for 100% compatibility for every Microsoft
format and style, stop right here. There’s no way to replicate
every idiosyncrasy and nuance of Big Brother’s proprietary formats.
That’s even a questionable goal, since you’d have to replicate the
flaws as well. Heck, incompatibility is the name of Microsoft’s
game, especially among versions of its own products. This is a real
concern, say, when researchers in 2050 try to read a Word 97
document using Word XYZ.

Instead, what we’re looking for is a practical level of
communication between StarOffice and MS Office, including the
correct translation of tables and spreadsheet formulas. How good is
good enough? To help answer this question we ran a series of tests
under both Windows and Linux, and summarized our findings.”


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