Developers of the open source project behind a translator between OpenDocument format (ODF) and Open XML document formats announced the completion of the 1.0 release of the technology this week.
The Open XML Translator allows conversion of documents from one format to the other and is available for free.
When plugged into Microsoft Word, the Translator opens and saves documents in ODF rather than the native Open XML format.
The Translator may also be plugged into competing word processing programs that use ODF as the default format to open and save documents in Open XML.
Microsoft has thrown its support behind the open source project to build a technical bridge between Open XML and ODF.
"We believe in delivering interoperability by design. In this case we have achieved that goal by working with partners and members of the open source community," said Tom Robertson, general manager for interoperability and standards at Microsoft.
"The Translator project has been built to be independent of any one application, and has proved to be useful for Microsoft and our competitors in solving an interoperability challenge for customers."
The 1.0 release of the Translator supports the current industry-standard document formats of both Open XML and ODF.
It has been tested on Microsoft Office 2007, Office 2003 and Office XP and has been localised into Dutch, French, German and Polish.
In addition, Novell has announced that the Translator will be natively implemented in its next version of OpenOffice.
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