Microsoft Office 12 to use XML formats by default

Microsoft has announced that the next version of Microsoft Office will use a new open XML file formats by default.

Ok… Didn’t we already have XML formats in Office 2003?
The thing is these XML formats were very limited. They were not the default formats, they were very large and had limited functionality (for example, Excel sheet features like graphs etc were not supported by the XML format).
The new XML format addresses all these problems…

This means that full featured office documents can be easily created from company data (ERP etc) by simple XML transformation rather than using more complex solutions like using the interop mechanism, XML data sources etc.

Microsoft is making a lot of effort to make Office 12 easier for integration with backend systems.
This is befitial to Microsoft because the apeal for organizations to upgrade their office system will be much greater
if there are lots of backend-Office integrations products out there (such as SAP-Microsoft Mendocino).
So I guess we’ll see more features like this that open Office to the world….

The official Press Release
Brian Jones on the new Office XML formats

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