ODF Going Global
By webmink on Oct 10, 2008
If you've been wondering where I have got to (go on, humour me), the answer is I am miles from home in South Africa where I came on Tuesday to participate in the second International ODF Workshop. The South African government were perfect, gracious and attentive hosts, personified in conference co-chair Aslam Raffee, and the attendees were from a wide range of countries.
Content highlights for me were hearing from the Belgian and Brazilian delegations on their progress with adopting ODF as a standard; the infectious enthusiasm of Justice Singh from the high court in Allahabad, India speaking of how and why his court is embracing ODF; practical, sensible questions from so many people; and the announcement from the Venezuelan delegation of their decision to adopt ODF.
The event also encouraged me to think about the words that will shape the global ODF adoption community going forward. My presentation, Seven Words, traced a little of the history of both ODF and the Free and open source software communities that created it. It went on to consider adoption philosophies and practicalities, including a sketch of a migration plan I created by consolidating the various stories I heard from adopters on the first day.
Marino Marcich of the ODF Alliance pointed out that there are now organisations from 62 countries represented in his membership, and I'm left with the strong of impression of a growing global community of practice in governments of every kind, both politically and geographically. From small roots ODF has grown to both a global movement and a strong technology, spreading wherever fair-minded people are willing to take a stand. It's been worth the trip.