OASIS Mailing List ArchivesView the OASIS mailing list archive below
or browse/search using MarkMail.


Help: OASIS Mailing Lists Help | MarkMail Help

[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

[xml-dev] Has W3C run its course? (Was: Has XML run its course?)

 From: "Peter Cameron" <peter.cameron@enscitech.com>
> Its looks like this a portion of this thread will be continuing the discussion of 
> the effectiveness and future of the W3C and will be covering some of the ground covered 
> by the "tragedy of the commons" thread. Maybe the time is right to take stock of where we 
> are. Look at what is created, what is being used, sort out the really useful from the useful. 
> Can we rely on a Darwinian survival of the fittest to take effect here - should we be performing 
> that ourselves? 
On the subject of W3C, I was really pleased to see that they have opened an 
office in Morocco[1] A really positive step. 

If anyone was at that XML Conference in San Jose in 1999 (I think) and caught 
my presentation, one of the early points I tried to make, in answer to a question
I put "Why do we need internationalisation?", was that if Western technology
developers do not internationalize (where possible) their products, it will act to
reinforce the center-periphery economic status quo we have now.  

This is not just bleeding heart liberalism, persuit of economic possibilities,
or some gay love of equity.  I hope XML-DEV readers will read my comments 
generously, and find more delicacy than I can succeed in putting in; I think 
it is an important subject for developers to consider, surely now more than ever.

I suggested at San Jose that when an assertive people feel condemmed to 
poverty or neo-colonial status it gives an opportunity for hotheads. 
(I am thinking as much of, say, re-emerging China as, say, the poorer Moslem 
countries, but there is no reason not to keep it abstract.)
We can consider the case of Japan earlier this century: when my country 
(to its shame) and other British  Commonwealth countries such as India 
instigated the  "Empire-First" policy,  it closed off markets, food and 
opportunity to Japan: using the undeniable need to eat and to have their due 
place in the world as an excuse,  their hotheads took control, invading China 
and so on.

After the war, the Allies took an approach different to the reparations of 
WWW I, and tried to improve the economy of their former enemies [2]
We can see that the major foes of the Allies, Germany and Japan, are 
now responsible and respected friends and leading economies: they may 
have learned their lessons,  but have their victors forgotten theirs?

It is not just a matter of defeating an enemy, it is also trying to remove
any economic causes of trouble: redressing legitimate grievances.  
We can perhaps contrast this approach with the approach of blockades:
Cuba, Iran, presumably Afghanistan soon (did I hear that US has to
lift some trade restrictions with India and Pakistan to get cooperation
on putting trade restrictions on Afghanistan?) 

I am not an expert in Arabic internationalization: indeed, I cannot really
figure out how a right-to-left language fits in with markup (do we
symmetrically-swap the open and close delimiters of tags if the
element names are in Arabic?)  But I hope that when we developers are
considering internationalizing our products, we won't think
"If I make my product Arab-friendly, it will just give more stuff
for terrorists to use."  

We are probably mostly just small developers, not making products for
a world market. But perhaps if there are readers with influence in large
companies reading, they might consider "Has my country repatriated
all research and development back to the USA? Does my company
sponsor university projects where the post-grads must leave for
USA to continue in their area, draining the country of moderates
who have benefited from interaction with the West?"  

Now I am certainly not blaming anyone who immigrates for better
opportunities. But how much better if there were opportunities
at home. 

This is the background to why I think W3C's opening a Moroccan
office is so positive, and I hope we all can wish them well.

Rick Jelliffe

[1] http://www.emi.ac.ma/W3C/contact.html 
[2] http://www.nara.gov/exhall/featured-document/marshall/marshall.html
Interesting to read it substituting "Afghanistan" for "Europe" and other