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   Re: [xml-dev] a standards story

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At 10:39 AM -0400 5/17/02, Simon St.Laurent wrote:

>Imagine the consternation when the dozen or so participants realized
>that EVERY National Body had voted "NO", and, moreover, with NO
>constructive comments!  The approach was seen as too complex, too ad
>hoc, and (because it still left everything requiring an integral number
>of octets) insufficient to produce efficient encodings of things like
>"SEQUENCE OF BOOLEAN".  It was quite clearly dead in the water.

What strikes me as most interesting about this is that people outside 
the working group effectively had veto power over the spec. If it had 
been left to merely the group producing the spec to decide when it 
was done, this would not have happened. I can think of at least two 
major W3C specs that would possibly have been vetoed if people 
outside the working group were allowed to vote, and I can see a few 
more coming down the road. External checks and balances are a good 
thing. The W3C process is sorely lacking a step in the process where 
potential users and implementers have an opportunity to reject an 
entire spec and send it back to the drawing board, even without the 
working group's consent.

| Elliotte Rusty Harold | elharo@metalab.unc.edu | Writer/Programmer |
|          The XML Bible, 2nd Edition (Hungry Minds, 2001)           |
|             http://www.cafeconleche.org/books/bible2/              |
|   http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ISBN=0764547607/cafeaulaitA/   |
|  Read Cafe au Lait for Java News:  http://www.cafeaulait.org/      |
|  Read Cafe con Leche for XML News: http://www.cafeconleche.org/    |


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