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From "Ted Leung" <twle...@sauria.com>
Subject Re: xml.apache.org charter proposal
Date Thu, 29 Mar 2001 06:45:01 GMT

----- Original Message -----
From: "Arved Sandstrom" <Arved_37@chebucto.ns.ca>
To: <general@xml.apache.org>
Sent: Wednesday, March 28, 2001 3:21 PM
Subject: Re: xml.apache.org charter proposal

> At 12:39 AM 3/28/01 -0500, Scott_Boag@lotus.com wrote:
> >Here is my rough proposal for a revamped charter/mission statement for
> >xml.apache.org:
> >
> >========
> >The mission of the xml.apache.org project is:
> >
> >to provide commercial-quality, high-performance, well-tested,
> >standards-based XML components that are developed in an open and
> >collaborative fashion.
> >
> >     We define "XML Component" as being that which processes a
> >     standard that is based on XML, and which is generally
> >     applicable to a wide variety of applications.  Parsers,
> >      processors, editing tools, diagnostic tools, and
> >      XML-specific databases are examples of what we mean
> >      by components.
> >
> >to provide feedback to standards bodies (such as IETF and W3C) from an
> >implementation perspective.
> >
> >to build an XML infrastructure that fits into a coherent architecture, in
> >order to enable and encourage use of XML.
> >========
> >
> >By this charter, Cocoon would not today be accepted.  However, it should
> >kept as part of xml.apache.org as long as they wish to stay (I hear they
> >are thinking of forming their own PMC, so this shouldn't be an issue).
> >
> >The reason to constrain the mission is that XML is like motor oil... it
> >being used all over the machine.  Use of XML alone should not be part of
> >our acceptence criteria.  We should have a clear idea of what we are
> >to do.  I'm not sure the above is it, but it's a first swag, and
> >a good starting point for discussion...
> If we interpret "standard" to include W3C Recommendation (or something
> leading up to that), yes, this seems a good starting point, and it does
> include most of XML Apache as it now stands.

Some possible standards bodies would include W3C, IETF, OASIS, ISO....
Not just W3C.

> I don't think we want to rule out experimental projects, though. For
> example, if we stuck with "standards" then we'd only support XML Schema,
> if someone approached us with the equivalent of RELAX or TREX, what would
> say? Go away, you don't have the blessings of W3C? I mean, I truly hope we

In Xerces, the JDOM guys were basically told this, and non-W3C'ness was
the hammer that was applied to the nail.

> are not going to be just an implementations shop for W3C. I think there
> a bunch of XML problems out there that W3C doesn't have the best solution
> for, or even any solution for. Let me put it this way - who came up with
> SAX? And look at the other major XML parsing API that W3C came up with
> (which I truly dislike...)

I fully agree with you, Arved.  I do not believe that we should be just the
shop for W3C -- or any other "standards" body.   I also agree that it is
necessary to
have a place for experimental projects in order to keep the XML project
vital.  Innovation
comes from the bottom up.  The fish, on the other hand, rots from the head.

> OK, I'm not as anti-W3C as I sound. But I do believe that just because XML
> started with the W3C doesn't mean that they (in the large) really
> it all that well. Or leastways, I think there's a heck of a lot of non-W3C
> people that understand XML as well, or better, than W3C does.

I am truly concerned that the W3C has lost the ability to restrain
in its process.   All you have to do is look at Schema and XQuery in order
to see train wrecks in the works.

> I think "standards-based" is maybe a bit too constrictive, is my point
> Let's accept projects as they show up, on a case-by-case basis, if they
> propose to solve a real problem and it looks like they will do it well.
> covers standards, anyway - the whole point of having a standard
> is because it helps define a problem space and its solution.

I like this idea, but how do we make sure that we are dealing even-handedly
all projects that show up.  The ASF imprimatur is highly desirable.  That's
we got major politicking between Sun and IBM, and why we have 2 XML
that are the ASF XML Parser, depending on whose marketing folks you are

> Regards,
> Arved Sandstrom
> Fairly Senior Software Type
> e-plicity (http://www.e-plicity.com)
> Wireless * B2B * J2EE * XML --- Halifax, Nova Scotia
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