The past two weeks have been crazy for me, and blogging has taken a back seat. Just to get myself back into it I thought I would comment on a news item I saw concerning Novell's business.

This comes from ZDNet UK:

Novell has claimed its Linux business has grown by 243 percent over the last three quarters, and it has credited its deal with Microsoft as a big factor.

The article focuses mostly on the fact that the investments in the joint engineering to improve interoperability between Windows and Linux that has made the difference. Customer are interested in Novell's products because of the collaboration with Microsoft.

There is no better endorsement of why interoperability is so important than when the market speaks through its purchasing choices.

I have made a number of blog posts about what we view the underpinnings of interoperability to be, and that standards do not make up the sum-total of interoperability. The work around the standardization of Open XML and document formats is hugely important, but without implementations being done in real products, without business relationships being setup to drive testing, support, services, etc, without IP being addressed as a mechanism for collaboration - without these items, standard are not going to deliver interop. It is the combination of all of these elements that is so important.

This is good stuff, and is real evidence of the quality of the interop work we have been doing for the past 2 years. I'm really pleased to see this.

As for all of the great threads about Open XML that have been going on while I have been doing my day job at Microsoft...I'll get to them, I promise.