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Re: RSS 1.0: problems with feed, validator, CPAN module or specification?

From: olivier Thereaux <ot@w3.org>
Date: Fri, 9 Feb 2007 09:22:50 +0100
Message-Id: <AEFDFCE5-8112-4908-9099-BEB3A94759D5@w3.org>
Cc: Sam Ruby <rubys@intertwingly.net>, QA IG <www-qa@w3.org>
To: Brian Kelly <b.kelly@ukoln.ac.uk>

Hi Brian,

[ Trimming recipient list, as I think it is getting less relevant to  
the feed validator's user list now. ]

Thanks a lot for your thoughts, I think it's an interesting and  
important discussion.

On Feb 8, 2007, at 12:20 , Brian Kelly wrote:
> So in response to your question "What do *you* think went wrong?" I  
> would
> say W3C's (public-ish) spin on its vision and its standards. For  
> example at
> the Workshop on E-Government at the WWW2006 conference, Ivan Herman's
> opening talk on standards for e-government gave no indication of the
> complexities we're talking about [...]

Interesting. I have been in technology and open source for too little  
to consider myself wise, but I think I have encountered the issue a  
few times in the past years, and I would formulate it thus:

How do you create interest in your technology, how do you get people  
to rely on your tools, and participate in its development, when the  
audience ranges from the skeptics (who don't see the interest of it  
all), to the fanatics (blinded by their passion and unable to take  
some healty distance), and the cynics (often, ex-fanatics who had a  
rough ride back to earth)?

I don't think that can be achieved. Not in a single message. One has  
to tailor a different message for everyone to get them all to a  
decent middle ground... At the risk of sounding like you're  
contradicting yourself when you're saying "open standards is a great  
way to create good, interoperable technologies" one day, and "making  
open standards is hard work" the next day.

Maybe you weren't in Ivan Herman's target audience when he was giving  
his www2006 talk - he was probably trying to raise interest in people  
not aware of work in the area. And maybe it was a good thing that you  
had a different message, allowing people at the conference to get the  
complexity of the picture, not in a single talk, but overall?

> The W3C QA group does advocacy work on the benefits of open  
> standards - e.g.
> http://www.w3.org/QA/2003/07/LocalAction
> However this implies that the open standards and supporting tools,
> documents, etc. are all fine.

I believe that indeed, some of our advocacy material try to get  
people excited about open standards and the software that go with it,  
and make them use the standard and software as the good and useful  
tools that they are. We also try to strongly carry the message that  
open standards and open source tools only work if many people give  
some input, comment, report bugs, submit test cases - that's the  
heart and value of *open* source/standards.

Have we been too vocal about the former and not enough about the  
latter? Would you have suggestions on how to balance the messaging  
better, some topics you think would be worth covering in more details?

Thank you.
-- 
olivier
Received on Friday, 9 February 2007 08:22:58 UTC

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