by CIO Staff

How the Mighty Quinn Has Fallen

Apr 05, 20062 mins
IT Leadership

Jan. 13, 2004—Massachusetts launches a new open standards policy regarding the planning, development and implementations of IT systems.

Jan. 15, 2005—Eric Kriss, Massachusetts secretary, Executive Office for Administration and Finance, gives a talk about open formats, saying, “Our public policy focus is to ensure that public records remain independent of underlying systems and applications, ensuring their accessibility over very long periods of time.”

March 2005—Massachusetts posts “Version 3” of the IT Division’s Enterprise Technical Reference Model, a new draft of open formats standard, online for public comment.

Aug. 31, 2005—Massachusetts chooses OASIS OpenDocument Format, saying executive branch agencies are expected to migrate to the format by Jan. 1, 2007. Decision still open for comments.

Sept. 8, 2005—Microsoft’s Alan Yates sends letter to Eric Kriss and Peter Quinn outlining Microsoft’s objections to the OpenDocument mandate.

Sept. 23, 2005—Massachusetts makes final decision to go with ODF.

October 2005—Microsoft says it will enable people to publish documents in the Adobe Systems PDF format with Office 12, which is expected to be completed by the second half of 2006. Office 12 won’t support OpenDocument.

Oct. 31, 2005—State Sen. Marc Pacheco holds hearing on the ODF decision.

November 2005—State Sen. Michael W. Morrissey introduces an amendment to an economic stimulus bill that would reduce the CIO’s procurement power by proposing the creation of an information technology task force to approve technical standards.

Nov. 22, 2005—Microsoft announces that it will submit its Office Open XML document format to the standards body Ecma. The move was seen as effort to ensure that Microsoft customers—most notably governments—can have long-term access to documents. It is also seen as a challenge to ODF, because it is considered as a first step toward opening the formats upon which Office is based.

Nov. 26, 2005Boston Globe reports an investigation into Peter Quinn’s travels to technology conferences. Quinn was exonerated by his former boss by Dec. 10.

Dec. 27, 2005—Peter Quinn resigns, effective Jan. 9, saying he has become a “political lightning rod” for all IT projects.

Jan. 31, 2006—Louis Gutierrez, a former Massachusetts CIO, is appointed as Quinn’s successor. A state press release announcing Gutierrez’s appointment confirms that Massachusetts will move ahead with the OpenDocument mandate.