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Apple drafts new OpenDoc

Apple is showing a new version of OpenDoc at MacWorld that it hopes will give ActiveX a run for its money.

At the MacWorld trade show in Boston this week, Apple Computer will showcase a new version of OpenDoc that it hopes will give Microsoft's ActiveX architecture a run for its money.

OpenDoc is an Apple- and IBM-backed component architecture that allows small programs, such as a Web browser and word processor, to work together. But the fairly new technology has a long way to go in matching the popularity of ActiveX, with only a handful of OpenDoc objects now available. OpenDoc has been slow to catch on because it is available only on Macintosh and OS/2, not Windows.

Apple will ship OpenDoc 1.1 for Mac and OS/2 this week, while demonstrating beta versions of OpenDoc 1.0 on Windows 95 and NT, as well as AIX.

In addition, Component Integration Laboratories announced another important step for OpenDoc today: shipment of the Live Objects Validation Kit, a suite of software that allows OpenDoc developers to test the interoperability of their components. This week, 16 developers, including Digital Harbor, Totally Hip Software, and Apple will announce validated OpenDoc components, dubbed Live Objects.

Among the OpenDoc components on display this week will be the final version of Apple's CyberDog 1.1, a collection of 32 Live Objects that includes a Web browser, FTP client, and email software. Apple will also show off its Live Objects Essentials Kit, a suite of OpenDoc parts for developers.