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On Thursday 24 June 2004 09:50, Roger L. Costello wrote:
> Perhaps for some things progress must come about by adding more complexity.
> I don't know. What do you think? /Roger
I suggest it's an iterative process:
Start with something simple that mostly does the job.
As additional needs crop up, add the additional complexity to handle these
When you have something complex that really does the job, look at it and
extract the simple elegant version that still really does the job.
(optional) Expand the job and loop.
I've seen it claimed that it takes about 40 years for a technology to loop.
(or become a commodity if the job doesn't expand.) The classic example is
aircraft, 40 years from World War I when they first became useful, to the
Markup seems roughly on track, from circa 1960 to xml with the bugs worked out
circa 2000. The task has now expanded from document maintenance and
presentation to more general information interchange, possibly without a
human in the loop. We're in the complexification stage again, 15 years from
SGML-TNG, thirty from xml-tng.