Microsoft, Rivals Spar on XML

The European Commission is caught in the middle of the latest standards battle between Microsoft Corp. and chief rivals IBM and Sun Microsystems Inc. This time it's over XML. At the XML Conference & Exposition here last week, Jean Paoli, Microsoft's XML architect, said that despite competitors' protests, Microsoft's XML format has been accepted as open and standard. Last week, the EC released a statement saying that Sun, Microsoft and IBM had "responded positively" to its recommendations on providing a standard method for use of documents and office-type software to ensure interoperability.

In its statement, the EC said: "Microsoft has also agreed with a recommendation that urged the company to issue a public commitment to publish and provide non-discriminatory access to future versions of its WordML Document specifications. ... Microsoft also states that it will pursue actions to document the existing non-XML formatted elements of the WordML Document format in XML format." Paoli said Microsoft, of Redmond, Wash., will comply by enabling its partners to develop what he called filters that would enable other applications to read and interoperate with the WordML format.

News source: eWeek

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