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"Ballot screen" coming to Office 2010, too

By Matthew
Aug 6, 2009
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  1. Algoz

    Algoz TS Rookie Posts: 20

    Maybe we can consider whats behind all this ballot screen stuff...

    Certain parts of the EU, especially the French authorities have moved to Open Office as their office suite. This is not a recent development, see...

    http://news.cnet.com/French-taxman-opts-for-OpenOffice/2110-7344_3-5942180.html
    http://wiki.services.openoffice.org/wiki/Major_OpenOffice.org_Deployments

    You'll see that North America deployments are significantly lower.

    Now, everyone in Europe knows that the political power is the French-German axis. Its not too much of a stretch to see why the French/EU would want to force the ODF to have equal billing in any office suite, whether it be open or proprietary.

    The thing is, Open Office is being starved of investment, with some reporting the central development team is down to just 6 (I don't want to get into the merits or otherwise of community based support), which is quite a risk when running government departments.

    So, my opinion, M$-Office should support fully the odf format, and Open Office should support fully the M$-Office formats (docx, xlsx etc). This gives consumer choice.

    But if either organisation choose not to support the other's format, thats their decision.

    Finally, IMHO, the EU should have no right to force an entrepreneurial organisation to compromise its product (so long as its legal). Same applies to ballot screen for browser preference,
  2. I have NEVER understood this issue, I use IE and go straight to www.getfirefox.com and get my browser, so if MS was to release a Windows without an browser, than how can you get the one you want? It's like including Continental tires on a new Ford, would you rather buy your new car without tires? Seems like a trivial issue.
  3. Algoz

    Algoz TS Rookie Posts: 20

    And I am sure millions of people do the same, and your Ford analogy is good. But, this is not a trivial issue. Millions and millions of Euros of fines to M$ should be enough to convince anybody this is not trivial.
  4. Personally?

    Yes, ship a browser with the OS. Obviously MS is going to ship their own. A web browser has become a "basic need" when it comes to computing these days. The only thing that opens MS up to complaint is (a) they have an OS of their own, and (b) they have the most market share.

    I think the "ballot" is rather silly, frankly (and moreso in Office -there's a dropdown menu, folks!) Instead, if "mindshare" or "awareness" is the big complaint, have MS, Mozilla, Apple, Opera and Google all agree to include a link on their browsers with an informational page and links to download alternates. Unobtrusive, but available.

    I don't think it's needed, really, given you can't pick up a computer magazine without running across SOME mention of an alternate (Chrome seems to be it these days, with Firefox popping its head up with regularity.) But if they want to be sure "everyone's seen," do it that way.
  5. red1776

    red1776 Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe Posts: 5,895   +88

    Browser Total Market Share
    View Trend Microsoft Internet Explorer 67.68%
    View Trend Firefox 22.47%
    View Trend Safari 4.07%
    View Trend Chrome 2.59%
    View Trend Opera 1.97%
    View Trend Netscape 0.67%
    View Trend Opera Mini 0.29%
    View Trend Mozilla 0.07%
    View Trend Konqueror 0.05%
    View Trend ACCESS NetFront 0.04%
    View Trend Playstation 0.03%
    View Trend Danger Web Browser 0.02%
    View Trend Obigo 0.01%
    View Trend Microsoft Pocket Internet Explorer 0.01%
    View Trend Blazer 0.00%
    View Trend WebTV 0.00%
    View Trend Lotus Notes 0.00%
    View Trend BlackBerry 0.00%
    View Trend iCab 0.00%
    View Trend ANT Galio 0.00%
    View Trend MaxThon 0.00%

    source: http://marketshare.hitslink.com/browser-market-share.aspx?qprid=0
  6. If you didn't have rules like the EU have, we would all be forced to use hotmail and buy all our books from MSN-shop. We have the same rules, but don't use them on Microsoft. We should. Microsoft forced Netscape out of the browser market with unfair competition.

    Don't you understand that a monopoly can be abused? Or are you faking it?
  7. Algoz

    Algoz TS Rookie Posts: 20

    Sure monopolies can (and are) abused. And I guess you are suggesting that the EU is forcing the ballot screen to obviate the perceived M$ abuse. Well, why not go a stage further and have the EU demand the following ballot screens...

    WMP or VLC or Miro
    Wordpad or ABIword
    Outlook Express (or whatever it is now) or Thunderbird
    etc

    Tell you what, lets make M$ bundle Ubuntu and put that on a ballot screen as well. The IE argument is just as valid, but the scale exposes just how proposterous the ballot screen is.

    However, none of this will stop institutionalised monopoly abuse.

    In respect of your comment about the EU rules having saved me from having to use MSN and Hotmail, please don't assume that all consumers are dumb, lack knowledge and won't exercise choice when buying!

    Finally, if as you say, the EU type rules are not implemented in the US on M$, then (by logical extension of your argument), explain how Apple manages to exist?
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