Microsoft’s Failures with the OOXML Standard

“The ISO ‘fast track’ vote on approval of Microsoft’s OOXML
document specification happens next Monday (2 Sep.), and news is
breaking fast and furious as various countries report out early. An
interesting bit of technical experimentation was published in the
past week in the shadow of the vote. It shows something more
pragmatically damning than all of Rob Weir’s hard work digging
through faults in the OOXML specification.

“The work is published as a set of experiments. The first
experiment takes a trivial spread sheet created with Microsoft
Excel 2007. The next step is to unpack the Excel generated
‘standard OOXML’ and make a trivial edit to it and repack it. Excel
then complains violently about the result (i.e. to the point of not
reading the document)…”

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