Standards or not ?

Mat Colton mat.colton at
Sat Jan 25 03:37:12 UTC 2003

Am Freitag, 24. Januar 2003 22:31 schrieb Andreas Pour:
> Hi,
> Just a short point about standards:  you use the term a lot but do not
> define it.  What you seem to mean by "standard" is "the draft specification
> developed by", then you are using:

It's a recommendation, not a standard. Since they don't own the web they can't 
call it a standard.

>   * a completely undemocratic organization

So is KDE. So what?

>   * an organization which seriously considered making standards subject to
> an individual's monopoly (i.e., requiring royalty payments),

This is true and sad. But it hasn't happened so far and I hope it won't happen 
in the future.
Oh, BTW, Appsy could be seen as an individual's monopoly. Your Appsy has a 
great impact on the community. Not meant as a critic, just trying to point it 

> with these
> individuals having great influence over what is a "standard" or not

Yes, M$, IBM and Sun and others have a lot to say in there, sure, they're in 
the working groups. BUT, none of them can do anything on their own. And since 
M$ doesn't trust Sun they control themselves quite well. :P Well, most of the 
time anyway... 

> (i.e. a
> huge conflict of interest, not to mention likely anti-trust violations and
> other criminal behavior)

Every large organisation has times which are critical, decisions which are 
questionable and so on. Even in the KDE project... Again, so what. What 
matters is the result.

>   * a specification which is nowhere implemented so if you create s
> standards-compliant webpage, surprise, it is very much possible that
> *nobody* can use it

It will work on upcoming browsers. Don't know about you, but by now I write to 
standards so that I don't have to rewrite everything everytime a new browser 
version is released. In the early days of the internet this didn't work, 
since the browser coders had no guidelines. Thanks to the W3C this will 
hopefully be part of the past soon. Sites will scale, be accessible, be 
viewable on all browsers. 
Well, as soon as NS4 is gone we're half way there...

> If that is your def'n of "standard", then I pass on standards, thank you
> very much.

Yes, I know, I had a look at Appsy. ;) 
Ok, I know, it's old. When I look at my code that's as old as Appsy it's poor 
as well. But you get the idea? It doesn't scale, it's not accessible, it's 
not printable (in the standard version at least). And, it is quite obviously 
optimized for 2 browsers. IE and NS.  Thanks to the browsers error tolerance 
your site works. So go on and ignore the W3C's recommendations... 
But again, it's very old, so what.

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