Reference Implementation (Was: Re: XML catalog draft)

Paul Prescod wrote:
> To sum up: I think it would be nice and useful if we could send catalogs over the
> web in a reliable way, as Panorama does. But I think it is crucial that I be
> allowed to use them on my computer, or in my organization in the way I want
> to, without violating the XML specification.

Yes.  But Lee has a very valid point: proof.

There is a middle way.  No implementations of XML exist.  HTML/HTTP got
leg up by the presence of libWWW.  Sure, not too many browser vendors 
would use libWWW now, but it did show how it could be done, and that 
it could be done.  While the specification should not be a blueprint 
for implementation, a reference implementation can be.  This is the
I think the consortium members should consider.  Further, the 
work should begin now BEFORE there are several implementations 
claiming hegemony by colonization.  This has become a very hot 
topic in VRML now, and unfortunately, as VRML is in the 2.0 
stage, it is harder to establish a common practice.  There 
are also very difficult problems with the 3D animation and 
rendering features that will delay acceptance of any proposed 
reference implementation submitted by a vendor.

If we have learned nothing else, surely we now understand the 
persuasiveness of "running code".  It tests 1.0.  Those tests 
point the way to 2.0.  And so it goes.

Len Bullard
Lockheed Martin

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