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Re: [ba-ohs-talk] New backlink metadata; mhpurple v0.2 released

On Mon, 25 Feb 2002, Eric Armstrong wrote:    (01)

> Actually, I kind of have to disagree here. I think that real collaboration would
> have involved either working on the same piece of software, or fully focusing
> on the standards and techniques necessary to permit interoperability.    (02)

We're not disagreeing.  I'm saying that the focus of the OHS has to be on
the latter, not the former.  With that in mind, building real software is
a crucial prerequisite to standards development.  But it is to our benefit
to have multiple experiments in parallel.  That's what evolution is all
about.    (03)

This is all oversimplifying things, of course.  The underlying question
is, what progress has been made on the OHS?  And I would maintain that
there has been progress, but we have to understand the steps carefully and
set our expectations accordingly.    (04)

First, people who want to contribute to the OHS have to understand what it
is.  I'd be curious to hear what people think about this.  I believe that
we all have the same fuzzy picture, but that there is not something
concrete that everyone can grasp yet.  I think that we're nearing this
point, though, and I think that a subset of this group has already reached
it.  The onus is on this subset to clarify this picture for others.    (05)

Second, once we understand what an OHS is, we have to work towards
building one.  The problem with this group is twofold: There are more
commentators than there are builders, and we have not built a compelling
case for the builders to build anything.  This latter situation can only
be resolved if the picture becomes clear.    (06)

On the other hand, the picture won't become clear until we start building
things.  (A classic "wicked problem.")  This is the purpose of things like
purple numbers, and in this sense, purple numbers have been successful
beyond my wildest dreams.  I find it amazing that they have generated the
discussion that they have, as well as at least two independent
implementations.  Most importantly, the purpose was to clarify the need
for granular addressability as well as provide an intermediate solution.    (07)

> The problem, of the course, is the chicken and egg dilemma that has beset
> us since day one. We did the best we could in the couple of hours a week
> we were able to meet together, and in the little spare time we had to devote.
> But, given the lack of any serious tool for remote collaboration and discussion,
> we were unable to make much progress in designing such a tool remotely!    (08)

I don't agree with this at all.  There are plenty of serious tools for
remote collaboration and discussion.  We just have been particularly poor
at using them, and we have been poor at collectively improving our use of
them.    (09)

If people in this group are serious about collaborating to actually build
something, then let's start taking some action.  Small steps first.  Are
there ways that we can improve the use of these mailing lists?    (010)

We can start with Chris Dent's request: make sure your e-mails wrap at
about 70ish characters.  Then my followup: don't use HTML e-mail.  Then
there's Doug's constant request: don't attach an entire e-mail to a
two-line reply.  The list goes on and on.  If you have other suggestions,
please chime in.    (011)

-Eugene    (012)

+=== Eugene Eric Kim ===== eekim@eekim.com ===== http://www.eekim.com/ ===+
|       "Writer's block is a fancy term made up by whiners so they        |
+=====  can have an excuse to drink alcohol."  --Steve Martin  ===========+    (013)