Novell To Release Interoperability Technology For OpenOffice, Office 2007 - InformationWeek

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Novell To Release Interoperability Technology For OpenOffice, Office 2007

Novell, Microsoft, and others are developing bidirectional translators for word processing, spreadsheets, and presentations between the two software suites.

Novell on Monday said that it plans to release open source interoperability technology between the OpenOffice.org productivity suite and Microsoft Office 2007.

The Waltham, Mass., company, which recently launched a partnership with Microsoft, said it is working with the software maker and others to develop bidirectional translators for word processing, spreadsheets, and presentations between the two suites. The first, the word processing translator, is set to be available by the end of January.

The translators will be available as plug-ins to OpenOffice.org. In addition, Novell plans to release to the open source community code to integrate Open XML format, developed by Microsoft, into OpenOffice. The integration code is expected to help maintain consistent formats, formulas, and style templates across Office 2007 and the open source productivity suite.

Microsoft submitted Open XML, which is the default format of Office 2007, to Ecma, an international standards body. The Ecma Generael Assembly is expected on Dec. 7 to vote to submit the Open XML specification to the International Organization for Standardization for approval as a standard.

Office 2007 is available for businesses, along with Vista, a major upgrade of the Windows operating system. Consumer versions of both products are set for release next month.

OpenOffice.org supports the ISO-approved OpenDocument file format by default, and is available at no charge. Novell supports the suite on Linux and Windows as part of its Suse Linux Enterprise Desktop and Open Workgroup Suite products.

Novell and Microsoft last month announced a partnership to develop interoperability technology between Windows and Linux, including virtualization technology to make it easier to run Windows and the open source operating system on the same computer.

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