October 13, 2003

Standards Bashing

I had dinner tonight with Dave Chappell currently at Sonic and Colleen Evans, previously at Sonic and now at Microsoft. One of the topics Dave mentioned was some of his latest mis-quotes in a recent article, which he discussed in his O'Reilly Developers Weblog last week. Dave's a man of the world, so he knows mis-quotes happen all the time in the press, but I believe his comments in his weblog clearly express the point that this time around things are perhaps a little too far off-side.

So Dave has set the record straight in his O'Reilly weblog (emphasis added)

There is another part of this article that has me claiming that Microsoft and IBM won't let anyone share information about their spec workshops.

[...] The latest agreement for the 10/14 WS-ReliableMessaging Interop summit has this paragraph in it: "Participant is expected to respect the privacy of others since, for example, other participants may be working with pre-release code. Results of each testing session in the Interop Workshop are not intended to be publicly posted. By participating in the Interop Workshop, Participant agrees not to disclose, comment on or otherwise characterize, in any manner, the results of the interoperability testing or of the operation of any other participant's products or applications tested at the Interop Workshop without such other participant's prior written consent."

This clearly says to me that you are not allowed to disclose the details of what happens at the meeting. However, I still don't hold the view that is portrayed in the article. I was simply stating a detail about the process. I don't think that MS and IBM are being bad guys or trying to hide anything, as the article tries to suggest. I think this is a reasonable request. If one receives some information about some forward thinking details that has not been publicly disclosed, or has not been finalized, then its fair to ask that this information be held under nondisclosure until the details are worked out an published in a newer version of the specification. In the upcoming WS-ReliableMessaging Interop Summit, participating vendors will be bringing pre-release code. The initial efforts may not be successful, and making those results public wouldn't do much good except to damage the credibility of the effort.

Great effort has been put into trying to respect the privacy needs of workshop participants, while at the same time encouraging participation in the events. Only time will tell whether that is successful, but I believe that in the same way that SoapBuilders was a great way of moving the industry forward in a pragmatic manner, so is the Web Services Workshop process.

Proven and demonstrable interoperability is way better than just paper spec any day!

Entry categories: Standards
Posted by Jorgen Thelin at October 13, 2003 09:29 PM - [PermaLink]
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