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RE: XSL with scripting
Subject: RE: XSL with scripting|
From: "Didier PH Martin" <martind@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Tue, 22 Dec 1998 17:17:09 -0500
Refreshing to have someone remind everybody of down to earth truths. I agree
with you that because on the browser side only two guys are making the law,
W3 becomes more and more a PR tool. The facts are:
IETF WebDav group has actually at least three implementations already done:
one from Microsoft, one from Apache, one from CyberTeam. Two commercial one
I guess that if we don't have what we want from W3, the easiest way is to
create a new group and do get what we need. It is even possible to create a
new workgroup under the IETF flag. And you know what? _everybody_ can
participate. This is not reserved to a small gang who paid their tribute to
the consortium. After all, like Ray said the standard is what has the
biggest market share. What's W3? just a group of corporation not more not
less, it is not the whole society, they represent the interest of their
members before the interest of anybody else. Just look at the process: its
behind closed doors. So you can only say something on the result and not be
part of the discussions.
On the other side IETF groups are open to anybody for discussion. This is an
open democratic process. Anybody can bring something to the table. With W3
just eat what you got from them :-) Except if a new group do what they need,
then, it could be called a standard as well. You know, it seems that the
whole industry became crazy overnight with smart PR and marketing guys
convincing people that a piece of code that you license is a standard ????
that a group of companies doing a spec is standard????
My conclusion: If we don't like the standard offered then we can make one or
just modify the spec and say that this is the standard of the XXXXX group.
You know what' wrong with the W3 standard process: there is no competition,
is it therefore a monopoly???? Some would say no because more than one
company is part of it. Some would say yes, because the decisions are taken
only by the people part of it. And the paradox is that the one who put the
product on the market and gets the biggest market share will in fact be the
"de facto" standard.
What small companies should do? Remember the liliputians? The best strategy
seems to be to cooperate and not wait that a group decide what's good or not
if that group don't give a dam of what you say nor even let you participate
to discussions except if you sent a check :-) And even if you are part of
the consortium, will the consortium implement the specs? Of course not! So,
only big guys can? not necessarily if you look at some example like Linux.
Maybe with the last example, the problem is that all people who gave time
and efforts to the project won't get the reward. So then, What's wrong with
Linux. Nothing except that, in the end somebody will get the result and the
producers won't get nothing. What to do then? Maybe have a society where all
contributors would have a share. At least, if after some times the code gain
value, you have a part of the company.
So, my utopia is liliputians not working for nothing but having share of
their own work. Maybe the ideal standard making organism would be to create
a corporation with good rules having people contribute with code and get in
return stocks. They also gain voting power and therefore decision power.
This would be free dynamics of Linux but also creating a reward mechanism.
And we all know that Gulliver got hard time with liliputians. :-))))
Maybe the idea is crazy? But thank Ray to remind us that in fact, word like
standard are more a PR or marketing plug than real concrete reality. A
standard is only what people decide it to be. The best remedy is to create
one when you are not satisfied by what is offered. Simple, it suffice to be
more than one corporation or more than one individual and that's it, you get
a standard ;-)
Yes crazy times....
Didier PH Martin
[mailto:owner-xsl-list@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx]On Behalf Of Ray Cromwell
Sent: Tuesday, December 22, 1998 3:55 PM
Subject: Re: XSL with scripting
> Users ceded control of their standards from organizations they could
> control -- such as the IETF and ISO -- to organizations that they could
> not -- such as the W3C. Users confer legitimacy just on standards
> organizations just as they do on governments. Presumably, they trust these
It doesn't really work like that. It is developers and corporations
who confer legitimacy to standards. If neither Microsoft nor Netscape
implemented CSS, it would be dead. The fact that they created broken
implementations is responsible for CSS's lack of use today.
End users do not download browsers because of standards listed in the
marketing sheets. Web developers might, but not end users. My mother
doesn't care that WebTV doesn't support Java. After developer mindshare
creates an imperative for the feature, then the end users will care.
Call me ignorant, but it seems to me that standards get created by
two kinds of people: "Those who ship code" and "Those who have money"
The IETF is an example of "Those who ship code" So is the open source
movement. So is SAX. For example, the new window manager spec for
GNOME and KDE desktops on Linux. No committee, no debate. Just release
early, release often, until it works and everyone likes it. With the
IETF, in the old days, some standards were created the moment a
working implementation left the developers hands.
I think the W3C is an example of "Those who have money" (including
Academics @ big schools) Engineers at a company submit a spec. The
company hopes the new standard/proposal will somehow get them good
press (to be seen as a market leader) For example, webMethods,
DataChannel, etc follow textbook venture capital marketing gimmicks
which is to build incredible hype around something mundane, to be seen
as a "Leader" in this here-to-fore-unknown market category. If the
proposal makes it to a recommendation, you end up with the controlling
company having the most complete implementation, and others either
dropping support, or somehow being different.
Just look at the SMIL mess. Microsoft dropped support after they couldn't
beat RealNetworks to market with a player, and because being seen as
a "follower" of a standard of a competitor isn't as good as being
seen as the "leader"
Microsoft seems gungho about XSL, but Netscape doesn't. Hmm,
I wonder why?
-Ray "the leader in the XSL discussion market, which according to
Gartner Group will be worth $2 billion by 2001. With our new XSL-DISC DTD,
a W3C proposal, and auto-reply application server, we are delivering....."
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