Re: Safir @ INRIA

Thanks for your remarks regarding Stephen's proposal, Stan.
You wrote:

> He will not be obstructive, but may identify some important issues.
> Also, working through him might possibly be be one of the most
> effective routes to synchronizing objectives of openmath and this
> committee, thereby providing a broader basis.

I was also thinking of Stephen's proposal as an offer of help and
objective view.  (To be fair to Stephen, he wanted to present this as
an offer of the reviewing resources of Safir and not as one of an
OpenMath review.  He *is* (can't help but be) concerned about making
HTML-Math and OpenMath ideas consistent with one another, though.)  I
thought the proposal quite reasonable, and do have in mind that we
work with Safir in some regard at some time.

My only personal hesitation is in the matter of timing.  Our present
group numbers about a dozen active members, and I find it difficult to
have much confidence in feeling that I know the perspectives of these
members.  Is now the time to add more feedback or after our meeting in
October?  I think it's quite inadvisable to stage development so that
Safir feedback arrives shortly *after* we meet in October.  We should
either solicit opinion within the next 2 weeks, so that Stephen's
people can respond in time for us to prepare for discursive reaction
at the October meeting, or we should further refine our thinking
through the October meeting and then present the refinement for Safir

I do want to be clear that I don't have in mind any considerations
about turf wars.  Stephen's proposal, I think, is simply a matter of
opening our ideas up to objective, critical review.  This ought to be
done sooner or later.  (It's not as if our group is of unaminous
opinion either.)  Let's work in the next week or two to determine when
we plan to do this.