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The wonderful thing about Standards is Standards are wonderful things!

Apple OHAI! Long Time No Blog! I've been inspired by this post over at AppleInsider, titled "Apple details compatibility issues between iWork '08 and '09". Here's the gist:
Apple has acknowledged a problem with its productivity suite, iWork, in which the previous version known as iWork '08 cannot open files created by iWork '09. Posted earlier this week, the support article advises users of a workaround but makes no mention of any forthcoming corrective updates to iWork '08. The latest version, iWork '09, was unveiled at Macworld last month with updates to Keynote, Pages, and Numbers along with a new online service called Apple instructs users to save their documents as iWork '08 files if they need compatibility with the older version. While Apple used Keynote '09 as an example in the screenshots, the same issue affects the entire suite.
OK so for the love of fucking anything HOW IS THIS A FUCKING ISSUE?? - but more importantly I want to address this comment:
Maybe so but a standardized file format, or at least some kind of easy conversion process (a plug in?) would make sense and go a long way not to piss people off that find themselves being told that to open the file they just got sent they have to pay $'s. By the way, is it possible to see an 09 document with Quickview without actually having 09?
Ladies, gentlemen and morons of all ages -

There is no such thing as a standard file format

. File formats change. It's what they do. It's how software becomes less sucky over time, how your hard drive gets full, and just the very nature of the universe. Even plain text has changed over the years(BCD -> {EBCDIC, ASCII} -> Unicode). So, for your amusement, I present now the canonical list of nonstandard standard file types! .txt is NOT a standard file format (We covered this already). XML is NOT a standard file format. You can write an XML DTD for anything you want (and I promise you you'll change the DTD one day because you want it to do something you didn't think of!) .doc (MS Word Document) and .docx (MS Word Document - XML Format) are NOT standard file formats. There are at least 3 .doc versions (Word, Word95, Word 98) and I believe at least 2 revisions to the .docx specification. .htm/.html is NOT standard file formats (HTML 1? 2? 3? 4? 4.01 - Oh and is that Strict or Transitional? XHTML? HTML5?) .exe is NOT a standard file format (BASIC.EXE from a MicroVAX won't run on your MS-DOS machine, but you're sure welcome to try. I'll make the popcorn!) .so (.sl for you die-hard Solaris guys) is NOT a standard file format (sorry unix people - we're not immune. Is that there shared library COFF, ECOFF, a.out, ELF, or something you came up with in college that nobody else uses?) .zip is NOT a standard file format (the original pkzip didn't do encryption - that came later) .tar is NOT a standard file format (GNU tar? BSD tar? The fucked up Apple tar that understands resource forks?) .asm is NOT a standard file format (exactly which assembler are you feeding this to? And what architecture, because some of those instructions may not exist) .c, .h, .cpp, .C and all their friends are NOT standard file formats (K&R != ANSI != GNU != Microsoft != what you wrote in your compiler design class. Want to fix the C/C++ standards? Better men than you have tried and failed!). .java is NOT a standard file format (Java has evolved over its lifetime) .class is NOT a standard file format (Zipped or not? What version of the JRE is it for?) .js is NOT a standard file format (Changes and extensions (and perversions) abound!) .vb is NOT a standard file format (Discussions of VB are not acceptable in polite company. For purposes of this exercise any particle of matter is polite company, so please refrain from discussing this dreck unless you are in some parallel anti-universe, kthx.) .sql is NOT a standard file format (There are 3 popular SQL standards. No manufacturer completely follows ANY of them. Just shut the fuck up and be happy SELECT is spelled the same in most SQL variants, OK?) I'm bored with my list now. Add your own non-standard standard file formats in the comments. One day I'll hire a beautiful virgin in flowing white silk robes to scribe the list on fine parchment with gilded ink -- best non-standard standard format wins the virgin.


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