Saturday, 03 June 2006

Adobe, which released it's PDF format as an open format a while back, has apparently shoved Microsoft with a heck of a legal mess regarding Microsoft's plan to include PDF output support directly in the Office 2007 programs.

Brian Jones, a program manager in the Office team at Microsoft, explains that they're going to have to pull PDF output support out of Office 2007.

Let me see if I have this right. Adobe opens up the PDF format and establishes a standard that needs to be adhered to. Other companies and organizations, commercial and otherwise, pick up on that and add PDF creation support to their programs, with no hassle or complaint or legal action from Adobe. Then Microsoft adds it as an output format option to the next-gen Office programs, and Adobe complains and calls out the lawyers.

That stinks. No more Adobe for me. Don't try to convince me that it's different when it's Microsoft that's involved. Adobe's been spiraling toward an almost certain death for some time and this is just another example of that. The ISO:19005-1 standard pretty much spelled out PDF as a standard, it was opened, and now the lawyers are lining up. It's too bad. I guess Adobe didn't think through the definition of "open" when they "opened" the format standard. the only things that's clear is that some portion of Adobe's team of attorneys doesn't have a clue.

So, for people who want to do PDF in Office 2007 directly, it looks like it mean a separate download and installation. At least it won't mean being forced to use Adobe Acrobat, which is and has always been a buggy, bloated piece of junk in my experience. It fails more often than it works. I was rather looking forward to native support in Office right when I installed it...

Brian Jones' blog posts on the subject are here:

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Saturday, 03 June 2006 14:00:48 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00)
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