[sc34wg3] Editorial structure of N0396

Michel Biezunski sc34wg3@isotopicmaps.org
Mon, 21 Apr 2003 20:23:11 -0400

Patrick Durusau:
> | Having said all that, let me note that I am in complete agreement
> | with Steve Pepper that having a data model will encourage more rapid
> | development of topic map software and the adoption of topic maps
> | more generally. I am also in complete agreement with Steve Newcomb
> | that the essence of topic maps is being able to locate all the
> | information related to a topic from a single location, a concept
> | that Steve Pepper calls the "colocation objective." (There are other
> | nuances to those positions but I think that if we have a frank
> | discussion of the substance, as opposed to scoring procedural
> | points, we can work those out. This group has some of the brightest
> | people I have met in 3 separate professional careers and I have no
> | doubt the ability exists to reach a consensus that will advance
> | topic maps.)
> | 
> | What I think needs to happen is for the various groups that have
> | formed around particular names need to break up and work on a
> | consensus for the benefit of topic map generally and not
> | advance/defend "my (insert part name)." Whether that results in a
> | multi-part standard or a single part standard, makes little
> | difference in terms of conformance, for example, which would have to
> | be consistent across the multi-parts as well as (hopefully) in a
> | single part standard.
> Is this simply a request that we all sit down with blank sheets to
> redraw the map when we meet in London? If so, that request has already
> been turned down several times. We can't continue this death march
> towards the perfect model. I'm sympathetic to the idea of a single
> model, but I a) don't think we need it and b) despair of us achieving
> it before the momentum that we have built up is gone, and therefore I
> think the only way forward has to be to send what we have to Committee
> Draft status and move on to the real work: TMCL and TMQL.
> We've spent two whole years doing *nothing* except fix the bugs of
> HyTM and XTM. We need to move on.

I agree with Patrick. A standard is the result of a consensus.
It's not a power game between defenders of such or such perspective.
There is no way you can avoid the work it takes to put things together,
so that they make sense for all players involved in the topic maps
standard group, and therefore for the impacted industry. 

It's ludicrous to speak of interoperability if the
group of experts who claim to be the expert group on interoperable
information and knowledge is not able to make the various parts of 
the standard fully complement each other and be interoperable. 
It may or may not take more time, but we'll end up with a stronger 
standard, that will fit the common interests of involved parties. 
Every one has to fully understand what the others have done. 
That's the condition to move forward. Otherwise, it's not a standard,
it's a joke.

Michel Biezunski
Coolheads Consulting
402 85th Street #5C
Brooklyn, New York 11209
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Voice: (718) 921-0901