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   RE: [xml-dev] Lessons from the RSS Civil War: The Circle Of Life

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I see the pattern perfectly.  I question one's 
obeisance to it.  And as I said, I think the 
case of RSS is spilt milk because no one looked 
ahead and protected it and the contributors had 
not developed skills or behaviors that could 
prevent it.  But there are lessons in this pattern 
and given some of you want to apply what you 
believe those to be to other spec development 
efforts, it is prudent to be clear what those are.

Ok, I'll tone down the rhetoric but since we are 
now analogizing:

Take Java as an example.  Not getting the blessing 
from Sun just resulted in a Supreme Court decision 
that enforces the brand such that MS cannot offer 
a different version of Java.  Yet MS is not compelled 
to distribute Java and nothing stops it from creating 
a competitor.  Seems to work for anyone as long as 
the initial sources are clean and clear; it may not 
be comforting to the Java community.

The strategy of Adobe with PDF and of Sun with Java 
was to maintain proprietary rights to prevent forking. 
This lesson seems to be lost on the grassroots movements 
until the point at which they decide they must control 
the specification.  Then they have to choose and those 
who have controlled it and don't like to relent that 
may have to admit they blundered in allowing open 
community development and contributors. 

You may wish to revisit this because none of this 
affects vendor domination.  You may think MS is 
the only bad guy here, but anyone can dominate a 
market.  Including IBM.  They used to be the 
masters of that game.  They may have learned a lot. 
Because that is based on future behavior, it is 
my idle speculation.  You'd have a heckuva lot 
better chance avoiding it if you kept your 
community from fracturing over the process
but only a chance.  Tim's admonition to pick 
a good spec org is the best advice he has in 
his article, and further, one that you are 
comfortable with the process because little 
beyond that is controllable in an open 
environment, and the pattern is, one vendor 
eventually dominates the market.

Is that the circle of life you are referring to?


From: Gerald Bauer [mailto:luxorxul@yahoo.ca]

  I guess your rethoric is outdoing even Microsoft or
the RIAA. May I remind you that Microsoft steals and
blunders as it pleases. In Redhell the call it
euphemistically "Freedom to Innovate".

> I sincerely doubt a reasonable individual 
> will not work with an honorable group 
> to mutual benefit.  Take a deep 
> breath and trust that better results 
> can be obtained by that tactic.

  I guess you're an idealist. History and human nature
suggests otherwise. 

  Take C++ as an example. Did Bjarne Stroustroup get
the blessing from his colleague at Bell Labs Brian

  Take Java as an example. Did James Gosling get the
blessing from Bjarne Stroustroup?

  Take C# as an example. Did Anders Hejlsberg get the
blessing from James Gosling?

  Take Linux as an example. Did Linus Torvalds get the
blessing from Richard Stallmann?

  I guess you see the pattern here.


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