Thursday, September 13, 2007

Microsoft Certified Ballot Box Engineering in Pakistan?

After some digging around, I found out that there was indeed a committee that met and voted yes for OOXML in Pakistan. It looks like the committee met just once. There was a presentation on OOXML by a Microsoft person to the committee members. From what I hear, no views from the opponents of OOXML were presented. I had e-mailed the directors of Pakistan Standards and Quality Control Authority (PSQCA) and to the Pakistani Minister of Science and Technology, Ch. Nouraiz Shakoor Khan saying that we would like the open source community's views to be presented before a final vote was taken but received no replies. After listening to the Microsoft person, the committee voted in favor of OOXML. Now here is the interesting bit: Out of the 12 committee members, four are Microsoft Gold Partners, one was a Microsoft representative and the rest were academics. After the invalidated vote in Sweden, I am not surprised that so many Microsoft Gold Partners were on this committee. I tried to check whether the open source community's views were taken into consideration before the voting but currently I do not have information on this.

PS: I hear that Microsoft is planning to now offer MCBBE (Microsoft Certified Ballot Box Engineer) course along with its other course. I hear that several Indian political worthies who have specialized in booth capturing are lining up to take this course and upgrade their professional skills!