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And when necessary, I'll buy that, Murali!
John Cowan tells me there is a fine DTD to RNG translator,
so where equivalence is proven, it becomes a matter of
ensuring a contract reflects that potential to address
a well-stated necessity. Still, we have to contend with
investments in tools, education and clarity. I add that
last quality because of a statement I read on an application
language design list where the author said that the W3C
pages have come to resemble a mishmash of confusing tools
and specs and ended by saying "who needs that".
Just a comment on why suddenly ISO comes to prominence
again. This is aligned with the notion of Internet Time.
Organizations don't become stodgy because of age and
time doesn't suddenly become compressed. All that has
happened is that one organization learned and mastered
a communications medium that enables rapid messaging
and exchange of artifacts. That automatically speeds
up a process as long as quality is accounted for. Any
small group with fewer authority nodes goes faster. After
that, training, talent, insight and luck account for the
quality of the products. So individuals always count.
That said, individuals are accountable as well. We
should see information as the prize and our technologies
as bottles we keep it in. The bottles have to fit
in the refrigerator and can't be too hard to open
or close. If RELAX NG fits better in your refrigerator,
buy a gross. But if someone else is using XML Schema
and they have the room for it, it is not my business
to tell them they could keep eggs there instead.
I welcome the ISO initiative to reconcile these
overlapping tools. I respect those who have proposed
it and those who have signed up to do the work.
All I ask is that unlike DVDs, CDs, VHS, and vinyl,
I am not asked to buy yet another copy of All Along
The Watchtower just to get the liner notes on the
screen. I'll only do that if the clarity is better
and I really need dynamic fonts to fix presbyopic eyes.
Necessity: real but often a local requirement. The
dilemma of standards is that they aren't supposed to
be global solutions to local problems.
From: Murali Mani [mailto:mani@CS.UCLA.EDU]
Len, a very happy new year to you, and everyone again.
I like the way Len had put across his view points. However, I would say
that -- "Necessity is the mother of invention", and alternate schemas if
they exist, it is not because it is necessary to outdo others, rather
because they are necessary for our applications.
<warning>speaking for himself only<warning>
cheers and regards - murali.