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Subject: RE: [office] My ODF TC Farewell Week

One of the TC Members was kind enough to wish me well and to wonder why might have been behind my decision to cease participation at this time.  I realized that everything I have to say is suitable for sharing with the entire TC.

First, my cessation of participation at OASIS saves me some money at a time when, as a senior citizen, it is important to be frugal.  More than that, I am retrieving my attention for direction other pursuits.

I have tired of work on the ODF TC (and also the OpenOffice-lineage applications).  What attracted me to OASIS in 2008 was the formation of the OIC TC.  I had turned in some comments on ODF (and bugzilla issues on OpenOffice.org) before that, but creation of the OIC TC inspired me to check out OASIS Individual Membership and then also join the ODF TC.  The two attractions for me were the opportunity to contribute to the interoperability of ODF implementations and, so long there is going to be an ODF standard, have it be a good one. 

There are some hard lessons in all of the drama around ODF about who wants interoperability versus who is expected to provide it.  My sense has been that everyone wants interoperability, so long as it is free and someone else does the work.  That is dysfunctional, especially in an open (source) world.  

It might be possible to overcome the expectation anti-pattern around document interoperability.  I am not willing to make it my life's work [;<).  The friction is too high, it requires a level of cooperative activity that seems unachievable, and as a pensioner, it is beyond my abilities and my resources.  I have other satisfying activities that I am going to make room for in my elder years [;<).

That said, I must acknowledge Rob Weir for the great step he took in having the charter of the OIC TC be developed on a public discussion list.  That is a rare approach. It appealed to me.  I will forever acknowledge Rob for having done that, however much we manage to irritate ourselves otherwise.  Participating on that public discussion is what inspired me to then check into OASIS membership.

I still have my attention on interoperability advisories and document forensics/tests, even if I publish them myself after the OIC TC is shut down, the likely fate of that TC.  

I also have a long overdue contribution to make concerning deprecation of the ODF Package encryption technique in favor of a whole-package encryption that is not so vulnerable.  If I come up with something, I will let the ODF TC, LibreOffice, and Apache OpenOffice know about whatever is achieved in this area.  I shall start with a proof of concept first.  I expect to take my own sweet time.  The second in a series of courses I'm taking on cryptography is not until November (and may be delayed yet again).

 - Dennis

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