W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-smil@w3.org > July to September 1999

Re: Another Microsoft ploy

From: Jack Jansen <jack@oratrix.nl>
Date: Thu, 05 Aug 1999 23:25:16 +0200
To: nicholas@synarchy.net
Cc: www-smil@w3.org, jfn0870@ritvax.isc.rit.edu
Message-Id: <19990805212521.EA17EE267A@oratrix.oratrix.nl>

Recently, "Nicholas Roberts" <nicholas@synarchy.net> said:
> I agree, it is getting to a stage that only corporations can keep-up, let alo
> ne develop for, the W3C's standards.
> XML is far more complex and inacessible than HTML, SMIL Boston is being pushe
> d by a Microsoft effort faster than anything else can keep-up.

I already answered Jared personally, but here I think I really have to 
jump in. XML is _far less_ complex and inacessible than HTML. There
format is _much_ easier to parse than HTML/SGML, which is clearly
demonstrated by the numerous free toolkits available for it, from
complete applications to APIs for Python, Perl, C (need I mention the
very nicely designed and extremely fast expat to anyone with a serious 
interest in XML?), Java and probably most other languages in the

And because of its much more logical structure there'll be no more of
the <noframes> and <object> vs. <applet> problems, so even if your
software doesn't understand half of the tags it'll know which half,
and it'll probably continue doning reasonable things with the other

> W3C is an industry consortium and is NOT a democratic organisation.

For a standards body W3C is still dirt-cheap and purely
technical-biased. The membership fee may be quite steep for an
individual, but universities and non-profit outfits should have no
problem. And if you don't care about voting, only about joining in the 
discussions that's the only investment you have to make (aside from
time, lots of time:-). And if you want to vote you'll have to shell
out money to be at (I think) 2 out of 3 face-to-face meetings, but
with just a few of these we're not talking multi-million dollars here.

Just for fun, compare this to CCITT standards, who make you pay almost 
this amount to get a _copy_ of the standard when it's done. (Okay, a
bit of poetical license here, but you get the point:-)
Jack Jansen             | ++++ stop the execution of Mumia Abu-Jamal ++++
Jack.Jansen@oratrix.com | ++++ if you agree copy these lines to your sig ++++
www.oratrix.nl/~jack    | see http://www.xs4all.nl/~tank/spg-l/sigaction.htm 
Received on Thursday, 5 August 1999 17:25:25 UTC

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