Opponents to ODF strike back in Massachusetts


Masssachusetts made headlines worldwide last September when then-state CIO Peter Quinn finalized a plan to begin migrating to OpenDocument formats for reading and saving reports, spreadsheets and presentations by Jan. 1.

Andy Updegrove, an open-source advocate and Boston lawyer, said the report rehashes old criticisms and is one-sided.

"Certainly, the ITD made some mistakes, but there were two sides to this story. Unfortunately, only one is reflected" in the report's main findings, he said.

Updegrove also said that the Microsoft Office plug-ins the ITD is now evaluating sidestep the thorniest issues with OpenDocument for disabled computer users. "As a result, the recommendation of the committee to delay conversion until adequate accessibility tools are available is simply not necessary," he said.

Melanie Wyne, executive director for the Initiative for Software Choice, a Washington-based advocacy group managed by the CompTIA association, said the report echoes her organization's point-of-view.