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   RE: [xml-dev] XDocs and XForms?

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That's one way to look at it.  Then there 
is <OBJECT /> and now it is all up for grabs 
again.  And there are other vector graphics 
formats that are standard.  X3D for one or   
WebCGM if that is stil viable.  I'm sure 
one could do others.  They ALWAYS have that 
option and so does any of the rest of us.  
One has to sell it, but XML enables its.

When did you lose faith in XML as a freedom 
to innovate and begin to embrace standards 
as a means to stifle innovation?  If HTML 
is a competition-enabler, it quickly proved 
to be not very apt.  Perhaps some standards 
are more 'competition enabling' but in my 
years of doing this, I note that once the 
vocabulary is moreorless frozen, the numbers 
of viable implementations quickly drops, not 
increases.  Standards stifle in that dimension 
even if they enable a layer above.

Note, I'm not arguing 
against SVG, just noting that a browser gets 
bloated if it has to implement all of these forms 
and that is what limits development, not 
a spec'd language being a constraint. SVG 
is YetAnotherVectorMarkup and that's it. 
It is a popular one.  And that is good.  Yet SGMLers 
pushed back against HTML and in the beginning, 
they were "the industry".  Don't be too sure. 
Fickleness is just as rife in the computer 
industry as it is in the music business. It 
is really a scheduling and resources problem 
based on a legacy of last week's sales. 
Imagine our surprise to open a book on how 
to do .Net in Visual Foxpro only to discover 
that the entire book is about migrating off 
of Foxpro and into C# and Visual Basic components. 
Will we resist that?  Maybe but maybe not. 
Loyalty to a codebase also has a price; it's 
called, obsolescence.

The argument with Mike was, why should the 
browser be considered the centerpiece of the 
web?  I think the browser competition is 
over for most people given the deployment 
numbers if one is talking about HTML browsers. 
IE clearly has won that.  But the HTML legacy 
makes it fat and I would not be surprised if 
getting out of the HTML business or at least, 
getting it off centerstage were not on some 
minds in Redmond and elsewhere.  If you want 
to unhorse MS, you will have to change the 
rules, not use blunt trauma and competitively, 
standards are blunt instruments.  They can 
turn a technology into a loss-leader.  It 
cuts both ways.

On the other hand, if the web is just plumbing 
and XML is just a syntactically standard spec'c payload, 
there is a tremendous new competition in the 
libraries for creating components that are 
web-aware but not necessarily wrapped by 
the HTML framework.  I think that is where 
the evolution and the competition are going.
No Uche, not next week, but sooner perhaps 
than will be comforting.  Changing the rules 
by changing the environment is a very effective 
way to take out competitors.  See automobiles 
and buggy whips.

So again, what is the client for XDocs?  If 
it isn't the HTML browser, then the term 
"web browser" has to be more generic 
or we will need a new marketing term
(remember this one: "XML: what SGML should 
have been!) 
Starting development from the assumption 
that one develops for the web by developing 
for the HTML browser could easily become an 
obsolete assumption.  No, the browser is 
still there, but not for everything.  It 
becomes training wheels for scriptkiddies.


-----Original Message-----
From: Paul Prescod [mailto:paul@prescod.net]
Sent: Wednesday, October 16, 2002 5:29 PM
To: Bullard, Claude L (Len); xml-dev@lists.xml.org
Subject: Re: [xml-dev] XDocs and XForms?

Bullard, Claude L (Len) wrote:
>....   Others are
> simply coming up with a tag set for their 
> software, maybe a few others, to consume.  
>>From time to time, they might bother to lookup 
> what others in their industry are doing and 
> adopt some tags from them.  If they are very 
> careful, they will even use the namespaces to 
> tell you where they borrowed them.

We were talking about competition in the context of browsers. Microsoft 
does not have the option of inventing a new vocabulary for vector 
graphics. They could go the proprietary route with VML 2. They could go 
the standards route with SVG. They can't develop something totally new 
and proprietary without experiencing serious industry pushback.

So *in the context of browser development*, the standardization of 
markup languages is very important and the implementation of those 
standards serves as a basis for competition.


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