Standards or not ?

Andreas Pour pour at
Sat Jan 25 04:42:27 UTC 2003

Mat Colton wrote:
> 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.

Exactly my point - except it was being bandied about as a standard and something
which should be strictly followed simply b/c some big companies published it. 
Don't get me wrong, it may be a good idea to follow certain parts of it strictly
- but that is a different question from what is a standard.  In fact if anything
is a standards its IE so if your goal were to comply to standards you should
just do whatever IE does.  Right?  (And arguing IE is not a standard is being
political, when 90% of people do it one way, that *is* a standard, whether you
like it or not.)
> >   * a completely undemocratic organization
> So is KDE. So what?

The point is one should not "annoint" it under the banner "standard" and
slavishly do whatever they say. 

While "slavish" is extreme, this all started out with my comment that
should work with Konqueror 3.0 and the response was, in effect, all we worry
about is complying with this standard.  If compatability with what exists in the
wild is also a top priority then I have nothing to say :-), I am reacting to the
possible view of treating some bureaucracy controlled by some huge corporations
as being more important than reality.

> >   * 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
> out.

The following essential elements are missing from the analogy :-) :

  * everyone using the Internet having to pay MieTerra by force of law
  * anyone saying "do it this way and only this way b/c MieTerra says so"

[ ... ]

> > 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...

I don't care about them one bit as a "goal".  What I care about is that it
works.  It may be that following the recommendations is what makes it work; and
that case I will.  It may be otherwise, as it in fact was when the site was
written; and that I won't.

Still today you can make a site in a way that Konqueor or Mozilla or IE won't
display it but it complies with the "standards".

> But again, it's very old, so what.

Exactly.  Maybe if my house were rebuilt a few nails would not be as crooked. 
But I am lazy, or better I have other things to occupy my time, so I leave it as
it stands.



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