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Microsoft told to remove PDF support from Office 2007

Microsoft raised a few eyebrows when it announced that it would natively support the ability to publish documents in Adobe PDF format. Given the popularity of PDF documents (for better or worse) on the web, support from Microsoft was seen by most as a nice addition for Office 2007.

That is all about to change now due to concerns raised by Adobe. The two companies were in talks for the past four months about the inclusion of PDF functionality in Office 2007, but those talks broke down recently. Microsoft contended that it is in the clear as far as native PDF support goes and that its customers have been asking for the features. Adobe countered by saying that Microsoft should either remove the feature altogether or charge customers for it. "The 'save as PDF' feature is the second most popular request we get from customers. Adobe has told the world that PDF is an open format...and (rival) products OpenOffice, WordPerfect Office and Apple (Computer's applications) already support PDF and tout it as a selling feature. Microsoft should be able to support PDF as well," stated Microsoft attorney Dave Heiner.

As a result of the legal bickering, Microsoft will remove not only the save as PDF feature that is available in Office 2007 Beta 2, but also the ability to save documents in Microsoft’s own XPS format. Customers will, however, be able to download both options as free downloads from Microsoft's Office homepage.

Brian Jones, program manager for Microsoft Office, is really disheartened over the whole situation. He recently wrote about his thoughts on the matter in his blog:

This really is one of those cases where you just have to shake your head. Adobe got a lot of goodwill with customers, particularly in government circles, for making PDF available as an open standard. It’s amazing that they would go back on the openness pledge. Unfortunately, the really big losers here are the customers who now have one extra hassle when they deploy Office.

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RE: gg
By Trisped on 6/6/2006 11:51:49 AM , Rating: 2
What he learned was SHARED INFORMATION. All those who came before, freely GAVE, and then he announced "I wrote this for money."
When Bill Gates was starting out you had two groups. Yes, there were the homebrew type groups, made up of hobbyist who made their own hardware and software for fun. They would then share it with their other group members and friends for free. Then there was the other group, the corporations. The corporations (like big blue and others) made proprietary hardware and software. It only worked with what they sold. Plus, nothing was backwards compatible (like the MAC OS previous to X). What is more, they charged a fortune for their products. If companies like Microsoft had not been created there would never have been enough support for the enthusiasts. Sure, they would still be making home made PCs, but you wouldn't have one. You wouldn't have an os that is better then command line Linux.
Have you ever looked at the Linux scene? Have you ever noticed how expensive this supposedly free OS is? Have you noticed how few apps made for current Linux systems work on all Linux OSes? Have you looked at the only company that makes proprietary hardware for personal computers? If Microsoft hadn't come in with its backwards compatibility, multi hardware config support, and everything else it has brought to the table we would still be in those computing dark ages where corporations ruled with an iron fist and a small group of freedom fighters who tirelessly work on small projects to make their lives easier and more enjoyable.
You can go play with your Linux of the year, but I am going to spend $100-150 on a legal copy of MS Windows so I can work and play on a platform that provides access to everything I need at a price I can afford.

"If you look at the last five years, if you look at what major innovations have occurred in computing technology, every single one of them came from AMD. Not a single innovation came from Intel." -- AMD CEO Hector Ruiz in 2007

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