OpenDoc in Microsoft Office a Reality

The OpenDocument Foundation has developed a plug-in for Microsoft Office that would provide transparent compatibility with ODF, allowing users to open and save like any other office document.

The group has apparently been working on the plug-in for quite some time, however only publicly acknowledged it after the state of Massachusetts put out a request on Wednesday.

The request asked for information on a plug-in that would "allow Microsoft Office to easily open, render, and save to ODF files, and also allow translation of documents between Microsoft's binary (.doc, .xls, .ppt) or XML formats and ODF."


According to the OpenDocument Foundation, the plug-in would work for any version of Office from Office 97. Testing of the plugin has been completed by the group and no issues have arisen.

The group is now in the process of submitting the plug-in to the state through the proper channels, it told Groklaw in an interview Thursday.

While some may find the organization's moves as somewhat contradictory to its stated premise, OpenDocument Foundation's Gary Edwards does not.

This isn't about Windows, Edwards told Groklaw. "It's about people, business units, existing workflows and business processes, and vested legacy information systems begging to be connected, coordinated, and re-engineered to reach new levels of productivity and service."

"It's also about the extraordinary value of ODF and it's importance to the next generation of collaborative computing," he continued.

It is not clear if the group plans to make the plug-in publicly available.

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