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ODF 1.2 Submitted to ISO

Last Wednesday, March 26th, on Document Freedom Day, OASIS submitted Open Document Format 1.2 standard to the ISO/IEC JTC1 Secretariat for transposition to an International Standard under the Publicly Available Specification (PAS) procedure.

If you recall, the PAS procedure is what we used back in 2005 when ODF 1.0 was submitted to ISO and was approved as ISO/IEC 26300.  ODF 1.1 used a different procedure and was processed as an amendment to ISO/IEC 26300.  Since ODF 1.2 is a much larger delta to the previous version it makes sense to take it through the PAS procedure again.

The PAS transposition process starts with a two month “translation period” when National Bodies may translate the ODF 1.2 specification if they wish.  This is then followed by a three-month ballot.   Following a successful ballot any comments received are reviewed by all stakeholders and resolutions determined at a Ballot Resolution Meeting (BRM).

I am notoriously bad at predicting the pace of standards development, but if you add up the steps of the process, this looks like a ballot ending in Q4 and a BRM around year’s end.

{ 8 comments… add one }
  • Pedro 2014/03/31, 12:31 pm

    Wow! Since that is out of the way, what are the predictions for ODF 1.3 (which hopefully will standardize font embedding) at least as an OASIS approved standard?

    • Rob 2014/03/31, 4:53 pm

      The major feature in ODF 1.3 will be the new change tracking mechanism. Once the subcommittee on that reports out with its final recommendation then the schedule for the standards approval side of that is easy to predict, but until that happens I can’t really make a prediction.

      • Pedro 2014/04/01, 5:11 am

        Does this mean that font embedding will not be improved or that OASIS (or you) does not consider this a major feature?

        • Rob 2014/04/01, 6:49 am

          Some implementations are already using svg:font-face-uri, which has existed since ODF 1.0, to do font embedding. If we do anything in ODF 1.3 in this area it would likely be to clarify that approach. I don’t consider that to be a major feature.

  • Bart Hanssens 2014/03/31, 1:33 pm

    Excellent news :-) Could you perhaps elaborate on why it took quite a bit longer than expected and (more important) how/if this can be avoided for the next versions of ODF ? Thanks.

    • Rob 2014/03/31, 5:01 pm

      Although it is wonderful to have an abundance of moral support and enthusiasm for ODF from many quarters, the fact is that doing standards work requires real effort by dedicated technical experts. You’ve seen that yourself. In previous ODF versions we had strong corporate support for the standards work from Sun and IBM. We no longer have Sun and I personally have been distracted with Apache OpenOffice.

      Faster progress on ODF 1.3 will require sufficient stakeholder interest to motivate experts to do the hard work of standards development. That motivation can take many forms, obviously.

      • Bart Hanssens 2014/04/10, 1:49 pm

        Indeed, I know it takes time to develop a standard, and kudos to the ODF TC members :-)

        Actually, I was referring to the (IMHO) long time between ODF becoming an OASIS standard, and submitting the OASIS document to ISO… Would it be possible to speed up this process, or is it just standard procedure ?

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