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Re: complexity (was: Re: XHTML and RDF)

From: Karl Dubost <karl@w3.org>
Date: Tue, 13 Apr 2004 18:08:14 -0400
Message-Id: <0F4CBC9D-8D97-11D8-9DC5-000A95718F82@w3.org>
Cc: www-qa@w3.org
To: "Orion Adrian" <oadrian@hotmail.com>

Le 13 avr. 2004, à 17:22, Orion Adrian a écrit :
> Some things just aren't best served by a committee. Specs I believe 
> are one of them.

So as someone said to you before in the thread, you are not talking 
about a standard creation but about a product creation with a good 
specification document. The mission of W3C is to bring together all 
players in an area to make them work together to create a stable 
version of a technology. It's all about sharing the work. Producing 
something in your corner has nothing to do with standards... and it's 
already done by multiple vendors :)

So you have to keep in mind that.

>> What is a specification?
> A specification is a document that describes a process or technology 
> that is sufficiently precise enough that people can use the document 
> to implement the process or technology in such a way that the desired 
> output always flows from a given set of inputs.

Almost agreed. You are forgetting a part, the most important. It has to 
be interoperable. In the sense of two different persons who don't know 
each other will be able to create a product that will be able to use 
the same technology in an interoperable way.

	And it's what standards are about. When I turn a light bulb in its 
socket, the brand for the light bulb and the one for the socket might 
be different, but the specs which describe the thread requirements.

> The trick is to have a single author's vision with people commenting 
> on it and the primary author actively seeking suggestions on how to 
> improve the specification. But always one author or a pair of well 
> coordinated authors.

Yes but this doesn't work either. Vision is fine for one product of one 
person or one company. Not for something done in a competitive market 
where you have to invite people to discuss and agree on the technology. 
Which visions do you take, the one of Microsoft, Sun, Apple, IBM, or 
Adrian Inc.

If you talk about Editors, it's mostly the case, often the documents 
have one or two editors.

>> How do you preserve minimum interoperability?
> A person is capable of making an internally consistent concept with 
> enough work, but given too many authors you generally end up with 
> something that isn't consistent, but rather a hodgepodge of ideas.

As I said at the start, you are not talking about a consortium, 
standard organization, or any kind of collective organization btw.

>> How do you try to reach maximum interoperability?
> Many simple ideas are very extensible without additional constructs.

As long, you define the extension mechanism, if you don't,  you can run 
into big interop problems.

>> http://esw.w3.org/topic/MeaningVsBehavior
>> http://esw.w3.org/topic/FormalLanguageVsProse
>> http://esw.w3.org/topic/ImplementationReport
>> http://esw.w3.org/topic/ExtensibilityGoodOrBad
>> http://esw.w3.org/topic/ErrorHandling
>> http://esw.w3.org/topic/TestableOrNot
> I'll take a look at these.


And thanks for your comments

Karl Dubost - http://www.w3.org/People/karl/
W3C Conformance Manager
*** Be Strict To Be Cool ***

Received on Tuesday, 13 April 2004 18:08:15 UTC

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