Lists Home |
Date Index |
I want to make this clear for anyone who
doesn't understand my post this morning.
I don't think Matt Gertner is a money
grubber, or that his company is incompetent,
or their services without value. I wanted
to point out that the game of savaging to
achieve some kind of superior position in business
or otherwise can be played by anyone anywhere
anytime and someone always gets hurt. Whether
we care or not may depend on whose ego gets
rubbed the wrong way, whose life and soul
poured into a work is denigrated, in short,
We all lose.
While we were exchanging those posts, a person
with a bomb strapped to their body walked into a
hotel in Northern Israel and killed at least
18 people, wounded another 80. Israel will retaliate.
In the last few weeks, Hindus have burned Muslims in their
beds, Muslims have slaughtered Hindu children, and
the armed forces of my country have bombed and shot
the forces of Al Qaeda and the Taliban killing both them and
innocent civilians. The intensity of
this is increasing. The politics of engagement
have devolved to stacking up the most bodies.
The Palestinians see no other way and believe
their tactics are working. The Israelis see
no other way and believe their tactics are working.
We see no other way and continue to fight. I
am told our tactics are working.
We are all losing. We are a heartbeat from a
global blowout. We are fighting WWIII in slow motion.
Why should we bring such madness to markup?
People I know and respect poured their life into
making markup a reality. Most were SGMLers. To
a person, they share a belief that this technology
has value beyond interoperability of heterogeneous
computer systems. They believe it can make us
smarter, get information to places that it could
not get to before, educate those who would not
be educated otherwise, preserve the best of what
we know, describe who we are, help save us from
It isn't about capitalism. It is about respect
and manners. That is rant, yes, but I believe it.
Even if only a small and local politic, a manner
that insists all markup is just markup and that
even where technologiges vary, they have the same
historical roots, one that acknowledges and respects
the work of those that came first, that builds on
that work and improves it, that small politic lights
a way. It is only good manners, but it means that
while I am not obliged to give one not qualified a
job, neither will I let that one starve. It says that
when obligated by the past, I perceive that obligation
as one to make tomorrow better by learning from it.
These are small things and we are a small community.
The voices raging in the distance are spreading a
terrible impenetrable darkness across our world. Our
technologies were designed to enable information to
be shared and sustained. They can be put to other uses
but of their very nature, they insist on openness and
adherence to the standards that express their meaning.
With this small and local politic, we can all win.
I'm sorry, Matt. I really don't like doing that sort
of thing. No one should. But XML is what it is
because SGMLers made it that way. And I can't let
voices that try to revise that history go unchallenged.
Because I can't, I lose. Because I won't, I lose.
Still, I refuse to deny the evidence of my
own eyes. That's a personal choice.