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General Chat Thread, Becta take M$ to Office Fair Trading in General; Becta are taking Microsoft to the office of fair trading over how office is not compatable with other office type ...
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    Becta take M$ to Office Fair Trading

    Becta are taking Microsoft to the office of fair trading over how office is not compatable with other office type packages.

    Full Report

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    Re: Becta take M$ to Office Fair Trading

    Yeah - I read about that on The Register:

    http://www.theregister.co.uk/2007/10..._schools_deal/

    Ho Hummmm.....

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    Re: Becta take M$ to Office Fair Trading

    But arnt Becta the ones who force everyone to use MS anyway?

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    Re: Becta take M$ to Office Fair Trading

    MS will probably have more court appearances now than they have windows hotfixes :P

    Excellent news

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    Re: Becta take M$ to Office Fair Trading

    Quote Originally Posted by j17sparky
    But arnt Becta the ones who force everyone to use MS anyway?
    Indeed.. utter hypocrisy

    I'm sure microsoft will be quivering in their shoes at the thought of Becta taking them to court

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    Re: Becta take M$ to Office Fair Trading

    Rattling MS's cage is a brave move from Becta considering that their interim report tells schools not to install either Office 2007 or Vista. I can see MS hitting back against that, but hitting harder and with better lawyers than Becta can afford.

    And since you can get a Mac version of Office plus read the files in the free and cross-platform Open Office, what exactly is the inter-operability problem to which Becta are referring?

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    Re: Becta take M$ to Office Fair Trading

    I pass Becta on the way to work everyday - wondered why there were vultures circling overhead.....

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    Re: Becta take M$ to Office Fair Trading

    Quote Originally Posted by NickJones
    Rattling MS's cage is a brave move from Becta considering that their interim report tells schools not to install either Office 2007 or Vista. I can see MS hitting back against that, but hitting harder and with better lawyers than Becta can afford.

    And since you can get a Mac version of Office plus read the files in the free and cross-platform Open Office, what exactly is the inter-operability problem to which Becta are referring?
    It is down to the fact that the .docx files etc... are unable to be opened by anything else unless specific actions are taken, such as forcing office 2007 to use the old format (which loses some functionality in the saved files) or using converters etc... The document format is not completely open for competitors to implement support for it (so support in openoffice is always going to be buggy etc...)

    This means several things: If one school updates to office 2007, then other schools will eventually have to update also, in order to be able to communicate with them properly. It also means that, once again, no completely compatible alternative is available.

    Saying to hold off on Office 2007 and Vista is not going to get any lawyers involved - it is advice from an advisory body. That is what they are there for. Considering something like 90% of the MIS market is taken up by Capita and SIMS.net, which is not completely compatible with 2007 or Vista (ie. not yet supported - parts of the SIMS.net system still use old 16bit code, which does not work on Vista), it would be premature to make the jump. Add into this that complete network lock down control via admx files is not really available until Server 2008, and you have a very good set of reasons not to 'upgrade' yet.

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    Re: Becta take M$ to Office Fair Trading

    Thanks Localzuk, that makes sense. I can't see it upsetting MS all that greatly though :-)

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    Re: Becta take M$ to Office Fair Trading

    Oh, I can! Put it this way - if companies come up with alternatives which are cheaper than Office 2007, and work with SIMS.net - what motivation have schools got to go up to Vista or office 2007?

    Yes, the amount of money they make from education in the UK is relatively low (a single large corporation like IBM probably generates them far more profit), but it also gets the pupils used to MS products. This knocks on to businesses, as they don't want to have to spend money on retraining new employees who haven't used a specific package.

    If schools moved to OO.o or Ubuntu or something like that, it could have a significant effect on Microsoft's bottom line (not immediately, but over a period of a 5 years or so).

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    Re: Becta take M$ to Office Fair Trading

    But how many schools are actually going to move to Ubuntu (and retrain all their users) because Becta told the OFT on Microsoft?

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    Re: Becta take M$ to Office Fair Trading

    Quote Originally Posted by NickJones
    But how many schools are actually going to move to Ubuntu (and retrain all their users) because Becta told the OFT on Microsoft?
    The problem won't be the kids, it'll be the teachers...

    It's probably the one thing that MS are counting on to stop any real major changeover to OpenOffice... although I'm giving some serious thought to suggesting we go that route with my primary schools to help cut their budget costs if nought else.

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    Re: Becta take M$ to Office Fair Trading

    Quote Originally Posted by contink
    Quote Originally Posted by NickJones
    But how many schools are actually going to move to Ubuntu (and retrain all their users) because Becta told the OFT on Microsoft?
    The problem won't be the kids, it'll be the teachers...

    It's probably the one thing that MS are counting on to stop any real major changeover to OpenOffice... although I'm giving some serious thought to suggesting we go that route with my primary schools to help cut their budget costs if nought else.
    As am I. I am keeping quiet about it at the moment, but our Microsoft tax is gradually increasing in school.

    I think a terminal server for things like SIMS.net, and let the rest be done on Ubuntu with the freely available software out there... It'd be a major change and there would undoubtedly be problems, but with some work and some investment (this the key thing - moving to free software isn't going to be a zero cost task) it could and should work.

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    Re: Becta take M$ to Office Fair Trading

    Whats the percentage of use in regards to say open office and microsoft office 10% to 90%?

    Do you guys not worry that your kids are going to be learning to use open office and then when they get into the real world have to dive into the office suite as its probs going to be used by business?

    Just a question?

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    Re: Becta take M$ to Office Fair Trading

    Quote Originally Posted by nathan
    Do you guys not worry that your kids are going to be learning to use open office and then when they get into the real world have to dive into the office suite as its probs going to be used by business?

    Just a question?
    No, Kids should get taught the principles - teaching an application is a bad idea. It's better kids get taught the fundamentals - applications change, but the fundamentals do not, MS wasn't always the dominant Office application, things change, so do interfaces.

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