[Prev][Next][Index][Thread]

Re: ERB decisions on the LINKTYPE proposal



Rule of the Ricebowl:  if only one or two people in an organization have 
the solution to a problem, they will defend the problem.  
Voodoo is making someone believe something to death.

>  Jon Bosak wrote:
> 
> Careful: I never said that *I* considered this language "voodoo",
> etc.; I said that most *users* would see it that way.  Nothing you
> have said contradicts this basic psychological fact.  The biggest
> single problem we have had in selling SGML over the last 10 years is a
> refusal to recognize user psychology as a valid concern.  Let's not
> make this mistake again.

The biggest mistake of the last ten years has been a failure to 
acknowledge that many "user psychologies" resulted from the 
self-fulfilling prophecies of companies who sold competing systems. 
One of the most damaging was:  "SGML is too hard", when in fact, 
"The SGML Way" was too hard and the software sold to 
support it too expensive.  Let's not make THAT mistake again.
  
Most of the jujuMasters of SGML are here.  HTML is SGML 
without "The SGML Way".  It sells.  Free software and a
"roll your own" language that anyone with an ASCII editor 
can use always will sell particularly when attached to a 
world wide media that gets immediate attention and new sales.
It is a lock-in phenomena of increasing returns:  in 
street language, the power of a siphon hose.  This isn't 
"superior technology and simple design" triumphing.  This 
is "400 acres and a mule to the first couple to put 
down a flag".  The Internet is the Oklahoma Teritory 
after the government sold the mining rights and decided 
the Indians weren't worth the soldiers.  Selah.

The adoption of XML will neither be rapid nor overwhelming.
The immediate market for XML is in users with lots of SGML 
they want to deliver via the Web.  Even if LINKTYPE is not 
the "ideal" answer, it won't scare anyone with that resource 
type.   User psychology doesn't seem to be an adequate reason 
not to use LINKTYPE.

len bullard
lockheed martin


Follow-Ups: References: