RE: Proposed restatement of syntax-based interoperability princip le ( was RE: Action item on syntax-based interoperability)

At 1:17 PM -0600 10/27/03, Bullard, Claude L (Len) wrote:

>A standard that provides an abstract model for the
>interoperating **system** (eg, X3D) is sufficient to enable
>two different implementors to create two different
>implementations for which a third author can write
>a document in any of the authorized encodings and expect
>it to operate with either of those implementations to some
>degree of rendering or behavioral fidelity.

This perhaps is the crux of the matter. Efforts to standardize data 
models and semantics are effectively efforts to standardize behavior. 
And I don't want to behave. (Bad Rusty! No biscuit!)

I may have very different needs than you have. I may want to do 
something very different with the data you send me than you expect me 
to do. For instance, I may want to render in black and white instead 
of color. I may want to compute the minimal enclosing volume of all 
your VRML objects, and render that. I may want to spell check the 
text data and throw the rest away. I may want to search the data for 
structures that meet only some criteria, and render only those. I may 
want to spider the links in the data. Or maybe I do want to do 
something you'd recognize as acceptable given a fixed set of 
semantics. But it's my choice. There's no reason I have to accept 
your meaning for the document. I'll have my own.

You're seeking interoperation by making everyone do the same thing. 
I'm an anarchist. Let everyone do whatever they want with the data. 
It's not my business to tell someone what they can or cannot do with 
the data I send them.


   Elliotte Rusty Harold
   Processing XML with Java (Addison-Wesley, 2002)

Received on Monday, 27 October 2003 17:46:08 UTC