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   RE: ISO standardization & availability

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  • From: "Bullard, Claude L (Len)" <clbullar@ingr.com>
  • To: martind@netfolder.com, XMLDev list <xml-dev@lists.xml.org>
  • Date: Thu, 14 Dec 2000 08:49:13 -0600

Good morning, Didier:

That is optimistic but I also think inevitable.  
There actually has been work going on to get 
the fully integrated media standards in place. 
MPEG is working hard on that and as usual, there 
are the rice bowl compatibility issues, but the 
liaisons between the Web3D, MPEG, ISO, and 
W3C are proceeding.  I am not sure what the 
problem is for XML other than no one needs 
more cooks and an alliance to rubberstamp a 
spec isn't useful and in truth, could do more 
damage than good.  In the cases I have cited, 
the parties are all partners and though that 
is noisy and slow, it seems to be getting the 
job done.

I had to explain to my dentist yesterday 
between drills, that the tech we use on the 
Internet was never intended to be used the 
way the WWW uses it and that a lot of the 
problems he has start there.  I expect to 
see integration as well.  Those who already  
work on the interactive content beyond 
text (eg, the 3D folks) have been hard at 
work on getting better specs in place 
but we still have limits imposed by 
being hosted on 70's era pipes hooked 
to 80/90s era hardware designs. 

But that is changing fast.  As Erik 
Naggum told me on comp-text-sgml some 
years ago, the one undeniable contribution 
of the WWW to the Internet was money to 
build better infrastructure. The 
success of HTML was not in bringing 
hypertext to the world.  Much better systems 
existed and we have had to repeat a lot 
of development work.  It was in enabling 
a very large community of authors to emerge 
who could then learn the more complex and 
better enabled systems.  The killerapp is 
still the talented author with razor sharp 
tools but the first requirement is desire 
to use them.

There will be some kickbutt applications 
coming out soon from the X3D work, some of 
which will be as X3D and MPEG are, XML-based, 
and others such as Sony's Blendo player, 
interoperable through the object model 
with X3D.  I expect an emergence point 
as broadband and bandwidth hungry apps 
such as these satisfy each other.  Then  
we will finally see very professional complex  
content hit the pipes and into the next 
generation of TV.  Sony has some strong 
demos already.

If you look at the work in interactive 
fiction done even in text media, the abstract 
concepts are becoming concrete and the communities 
of authors are growing.  A merging of the 
text-based fiction writers and the 3D animators 
is moving along nicely.  Now that 1.4 gHz machines 
are out there for real, it is almost showtime. 

The bigger problem is how expensive the 
content is to produce and the size of 
the teams needed.  When doing IrishSpace, 
we proved to ourselves we could do long 
form satisfactorily even in the P200 32mb 
machines, but the download time and the 
cost of building it were both still excessive, 
so from the web perspective, it didn't work. 
Yet, the Jeannie Johnston sails from Fenit 
Harbor next spring, so for what we were 
trying to accomplish, we succeeded wildly 
proving that commercial success on the Web 
is not the only metric.  Sometimes we have 
to keep in mind that webtech can be used 
for jobs other than becoming dot.coms, and 
these other jobs can be even more exciting.

In 92 at an SGML conference in Boston, I spoke of 
a time when a lot of us who started as artists 
and turned to computer science for the next 
generation of tools only to find them impoverished 
would work for years to improve the tools, then 
finally return to our beginnings to use them. 
That time is now and I am more than grateful 
to all who did the hard work to let us 
have a season as aging children with better toys.

Len Bullard
Intergraph Public Safety

Ekam sat.h, Vipraah bahudhaa vadanti.
Daamyata. Datta. Dayadhvam.h

-----Original Message-----
From: Didier PH Martin [mailto:martind@netfolder.com]

Slowly but surely we see a lot of improvment. Both organisms are learning to
work together and I am confident that in the future we'll see more
collaborative work. They have to, because, the 21st century brings the
computer in other information appliances like TV sets, game sets, phones,
etc.. It also requires some standardization at a new level. For instance, in
2010 what will be the standard for information going through a TV set? I do
not speak here of the actual broadcast but of interactive content? Who said
an HDTV cannot include a Web browser? Thus, W3C has to work with ISO, and
vise versa. Gee, I woke up as an optimist today :-)


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