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Re: Rhetoric and Psychology

From: Len Bullard <cbullard@HiWAAY.net>
Date: Fri, 15 Nov 1996 08:06:24 -0600
Message-ID: <328C78E0.639A@HiWAAY.net>
To: "W. Eliot Kimber" <drmacro@drmacro.com>
CC: Paul Prescod <papresco@calum.csclub.uwaterloo.ca>, W3C-SGML-WG@w3.org
W. Eliot Kimber wrote:
> 
> At 02:06 PM 11/13/96 -0500, Paul Prescod wrote:
> >I don't mean to pick on Lee, but I've just snapped. I'll address his
> >conspiracy theories first, and then the larger issue of the degenerating
> >tone of the discussions.
> 
> Paul,
> 
> Thanks for the reality check.  Everything you say is true. No standard
> created by and for more than one person can ever be perfect.  XML bit off a
> particularly difficult chunk to chew, namely to produce a simple
> specification to solve a hard problem in a nearly impossible political
> situation.  The fact that we have even been able to produce a reasonable
> draft without anybody A) leaving the ERB or B) any friendships being lost
> (as far as I know) is, I think, a major miracle.

Goodness.  I didn't think it was time to get out the nerf bats and 
work each other over.  Take a look at any list online that has 
done this kind of work and you will find harsh and harsher debates.
I thought during the VRML debates people would gather torches and 
go burn down the headquarters of some of the companies if not the 
homes of the members.  Nature of the process.  Still is over there 
although having moved the paperwork to ISO calmed it down some.

It is very necessary to take the heat here.  It makes it much easier 
later to say, yes, we fought over that and still came to this 
conclusion.  IMO, the archive is the legal documentation of the 
process much like a court transcript.   It is later reviewed and 
many *heated* comments are overlooked as in-process debate that 
is not relevant to the final judgement of whether the results 
meet the requirements.

Take it to the bank, we will all use the tactics we think
necessary.  Sometimes that means, do the mock turtle dance 
and let the issues fly.  Later, it is much easier to say, 
yes, we debated the speed of a bolt action rifle, the 
man on the grassy knoll, etc. and were satisfied a lone 
nut could do it and probably did.  That won't satisfy 
people who live for conspiracy, but it satisfies many more
logical types.  If we don't do that, no one is satisfied.

If at the end, XML is useful, we did the job.

len
Received on Friday, 15 November 1996 09:06:03 EST

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