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Re: ZNG dicussion

From: Alan Kent <ajk@mds.rmit.edu.au>
Date: Fri, 28 Sep 2001 10:07:41 +1000
To: www-zig@w3.org
Message-ID: <20010928100741.C23255@io.mds.rmit.edu.au>
After receiving a large number of emails on this topic this morning, I think
I have come to a new opinion.

To me there is a real issue whether ZNG-like proposals should be a part
of ZIG or a completely separate group/mailing list.

I am probably an outsider on this list really because while our product
is based on Z39.50 as the fundamental and only protocol for accessing
our database system, we have almost nothing to do with libraries.

My personal interest *is* to get the good stuff in Z39.50 out of
only the library community. We still have found no other protocol
like it that has the particular mix of strengths that I posted the
other day. Several statements I read through in recent mail seemed
to be of the opposite opinion - that the ZIG should concentrate on
the current user base of libraries and not look further afield.
This may be the case (I have no opinion).

There seems to be a real fear of making access to a subset of Z39.59
via other protocols. Everyone wants their bit of Z39.50 in there.
If this is the dominate opinion of this list (and it is a valid opinion
to have), then I suspect projects like ZNG will never get off the ground
within this list. That may be good or bad (I am not trying to give an
opinion, just highlight the results of such opinions).

I have a SOAP toolkit. I have a Z39.50 API. Its easy for me to glue
them together in different ways and configurations. If coming up with
a standard subset of Z39.50 to expose via a standard API is a mistake,
then I think I will provide an example gateway and implementation
and let customers tweak it to suit their needs. If ZNG takes off,
we will look at supporting it. Until then I will just do my own thing.

(I guess I am really bowing out of this discussion. The ZIG meeting
should be interesting!!! :-)


ps: I was going to add a comment such as

  "I guess providing a 'web service' for access to information resources
   to any person with MS Windows on their desktop in a standard way is
   not that important to libraries."

but I decided not to! :-) :-) :-)
It would sound sarcastic when all I really wanted to say is I think
a standard web service to existing Z39.50 resources would sharply
increase the accessibility of library information to applications
outside of a library. Whether such need exists, I do not know.
This would not replace Z39.50. It would solve a different need.
Received on Thursday, 27 September 2001 20:08:14 UTC

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