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Re: Update on Web Payments Working Group [The Web Browser API Incubation Anti-Pattern]

From: Anders Rundgren <anders.rundgren.net@gmail.com>
Date: Tue, 5 Apr 2016 22:37:21 +0200
To: Gregg Kellogg <gregg@greggkellogg.net>
Cc: Roger Bass <roger@traxiant.com>, Web Payments CG <public-webpayments@w3.org>
Message-ID: <57042201.9010009@gmail.com>
On 2016-04-05 21:52, Gregg Kellogg wrote:
> On Tuesday, April 5, 2016, Anders Rundgren <anders.rundgren.net@gmail.com <mailto:anders.rundgren.net@gmail.com>> wrote:
>     On 2016-04-05 19:33, Roger Bass wrote:
>         This seems to be a time for big picture reflections.
>     Indeed.  IMO we need to start with questions rather than with answers.
>     The IMO #1 question is: Should the imagined effort depend on new technology in browsers or not?
>     Why is that important?  Because if the answer is "Yes" it effectively means that the task is (more or less) owned by the browser vendors [1].
>     If OTOH the answer is "No", I don't see that the effort has a clear binding to W3C except for marketing reasons.
> This would seem to indicate that the W3C is only bound to efforts that end up
 > being implemented within browsers, which IMHO is a rather narrow reading of W3C's charter.

That's correct.  I don't see that W3C is "authoritative" outside of core Web technology
including browsers and a limited set of data formats (XML, JSON_LD).

To me, the question is more about if the work builds on and extends web standards,
which aren't limited to browser implementations. In particular, if the linked data
stack is involved, it's clearly a web standard, but of course, that is not yet clear.

Since anybody can develop web standards that aren't tied to browsers, it means
that the main purpose for using W3C in this case is for marketing.  There's nothing
wrong with marketing but the W3C membership fees and process requirements certainly
exclude a lot of people who may be needed to succeed.

BTW, standardizing "Applications" (which include Web Payments) have proved to be way
more difficult than standardizing lower layers (core technology).  If you then add
"Security" to the puzzle you quickly reach dead-lock which is why community-driven
projects like the Linux kernel never succeeded creating a unified cryptographic
architecture like featured in Windows and OS/X.


> Gregg
>     Cheers,
>     Anders
>     1] Experienced standards editor Ian Hickson explains it pretty well:
>     http://manu.sporny.org/2016/browser-api-incubation-antipattern/#comment-29249
>     "Fundamentally, the people who write the code have all the power. That’s always been the case"
Received on Tuesday, 5 April 2016 20:38:11 UTC

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