Tomorrow I'm heading out to Massachusetts for what should be a very interesting event at Harvard. The Kennedy school's Leadership for a Networked World is hosting a workshop entitled "Cross-Boundary Governance through Agreements and Standards". Here's a link for more information: http://ksgexecprogram.harvard.edu/program/lnw2/overview.aspx

I'll be out there for the rest of the week, and there should be some great discussions. We're already seeing a lot of examples of government processes benefitting from the OpenXML formats in combination with the custom schema support. Just like what we've already seen with the Florida House of Representatives, there are a huge number of customers that significantly benefit from the document assembly and content re-use solutions that you can now build.

As I've said before, the key thing you want to see is that multiple applications and solutions have the ability to interact with the file format you choose. This allows you to ensure that the information within your files can reach its full potential. It's important that that there is an adequate choice of formats to allow you to best leverage the applications you want to use, as we can't guarantee that one format will work for all scenarios. The translation work underway today is going to help out a lot here, both with existing applications as well as future ones.

Another area that governments in particular are interested in is long term archival, where you can rest easy that regardless of what happens to any particular application, you know that your documents can be accessed in both the near as well as long term future.

I'll let you guys know how the workshops go... there should be some great discussions.

-Brian