Thursday, November 9, 2017

Korean government moves to Open Document (.odt) standard


That's right. The Korean government is going to start using the Open Document format (.odt) for official government documents and archives. Say goodbye to .hwp files!

Apache Open Office 4. Pic unrelated Image: T§ at the German language Wikipedia [GFDL], via Wikimedia Common

Sort of. Individual public servants can still use Hangul Office to make all the .hwps or .docs or .ptts they want in their line of duty. Plus this idea's been floated for 3 years. But ZDnet cites that considerations like budgeting (i.e. not having to pay Hancom to use their propitiatory software that plenty of people pirate anyway) and the advantages in operability among different OSes, and that it's particularly suited to cloud storage.

It looks like they won't actually be using Open Office or LibreOffice though, but rather some kind of cloud solution for creating the docs. So no, not Google Docs, or apparently even Netffice. They're also working on converting old documents into the .odt or .pdf formats.

It looks like part of the wider government initiative called the On-nara System (온-나라 시스템) to streamline government paperwork into the cloud. This is rabbit hole of info and I don't have time to go more into this now, sorry.

I actually sort of like Hangul Office. I got a (legal?) copy from a coworker and you can set the whole thing to English and it's actually pretty intuitive and powerful, and yes incorporates well with your cloud drive storage. I've got a whole series of posts up if you need help opening/using HWP documents and don't have the program: 10원 Tips: Posts tagged "hwp"

Funny, before I came to Korea I was deep into promoting the open source lifestyle. Ubuntu and LibreOffice all the way. Now I'm full time back on Windows and Word/Hangul/Adobe.

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