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CPTTM CIO newsletter issue #25, Kent Tong, Editor in Chief

Dear CIO/IT managers,

This CPTTM CIO newsletter is to bring useful news to you, CIO/IT managers in Macau, for references without obligations, so that you can do your jobs easier and better! Hope you like it. if you'd like to unsubscribe or recommend your friends to subscribe, just email me at Old issues are available here.

Topics in this issue:

We're upgrading to OpenOffice 2.2

CPTTM started its migration to OpenOffice 1.1 in 2003 and it has taken 2 years (2005) to finish (details here). All 60+ employees have been usng it. Now we're upgrading to OpenOffice 2.2 for even better compatibility with MS Office documents, the support for ODF (the ISO office document format), the function to convert between Traditional and Simplified Chinese and etc. The migration is planned to take 2 months to complete.

There is a bug that has been holding us back: If some Chinese text is set to use an English font (e.g., Arial), it may display just fine, but when it is exported to a PDF, it will appear as a box. To work around this problem, we'll be using the PDFCreator. The users simply print to it as a network printer and then a PDF will be saved into a certain folder.

In addition to CPTTM, there are other case studies of recent OpenOffice migration: a large corporation and a city government.

GPL v3 released

Many open source software programs are licensed using the GPL v2 such as the Linux kernel or Samba. Now, GPL v3 has been released. Why is it important? It will prohibit deals like the one between Microsoft and Novell in the future. It doesn't prohibit the existing deals, but it intends to require Microsoft to grant the same patent protection to all users using the GPL v3 licensed software in SuSE Linux. Microsoft has stated that it will not provide patent protection to GPL v3 code in SuSE. As new versions of Samba and some others are going to adopt GPL v3, the Microsoft-Novell deal is going to fade away.

How to motivate your programmers

Here is a good article on how to motivate your programmers. My summary is: Give them the best hardware, let them solve technical challenges, avoid micro-management and meetings.

Will Open XML become an ISO standard?

The Open XML format specified by Microsoft is being fast tracked to ISO certification. If it is successful, there will be two ISO standards: ODF and Open XML. This is not only confusing, but also damaging because one of them is there only to document the format used by a single implementation (MS Office) and is thus dictated by that implementation, not by community concensus.

To get approval, it needs to get a Yes vote from at least 20 countries among the 30 countries in the ISO JTC-1 committee. The US national body, ANSI, hasn't been able to determine its vote, despite the Yes votes from a large number of Microsoft partners who have recently joined to become its voting members.

How will the national body in China vote? To express your views to the officials, you can vote.

Upcoming courses for CIO/IT manager

Course code Title Start date Duration (hours) Fee (MOP)
CM243-09-2007-C CISA & CISSP 2007/09/01 54 2500


Any questions, ideas or experiences to share? Contact me at 28781313 or also have two other newsletters: Network administrator newsletter and Software developer newsletter, your staff may like to subscribe.

Until next time, 

Kent Tong

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