Tomw Communications Pty Ltd - Media Release

Open Source Challenge to E-document Companies

31 July 2001, Sydney, Australia: An open source project designed to produce free software to compete with Microsoft may have a wider impact, according to electronic publishing consultant Tom Worthington. A Visiting Fellow in the Department of Computer Science at the Australian National University and Director of Tomw Communications Pty Ltd, Mr. Worthington presented at the Open Publish 2001 conference, in Sydney today:

"OpenOffice is an Open Source project with volunteers trying to design and build free software to rival Microsoft Office. One spinoff of the project is a portable format for electronic documents, which builds on public XML standards developed for the web. This might be used to replace the PDF format in Adobe's widely used Acrobat product."

As another indication of convergence in the electronic publishing fields Mr Worthington suggested that traditional publishers should now start to look at targeting interactive TV set-top boxes, as well as the Internet:

"A few weeks ago Australian free-to-air TV broadcasters agreed to adopt the european Multimedia Home Platform (MHP) format for interactive TV (iTV). What few seem to have yet realized it this is based on the same Internet standards used for web pages. As well as a type of "super teletext" system for TV, this can also be used for multimedia documents on set top boxes. This can provide a new market for electronic publications. With some minor adjustments to regulatory settings, this may rescue the Federal Government from its datacasting policy debacle."

In 1999 Worthington was elected a Fellow of the Australian Computer Society for his contribution to the development of public Internet policy. At the Australian National University he is presenting courses on wireless Internet and web site design using the latest international standards. In May he presented a seminar on e-Commerce for Small Business, sponsored by the Federal Government's Business Entry Point.

Media Enquires:
Tom Worthington FACS, Email: tom.worthington@tomw.net.au Tel: 0419 496 150 International: +61 419 496 150
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This media release with links to referenced material is available on-line at: http://www.tomw.net.au/media/20010731.html

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E-mail: tomw.communications@tomw.net.au Ph: 0419 496150 A.C.N. 088 714 309

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