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Subject: RE: [emergency-if] EDXL-AT & Situational Awareness

Agreed, Sukumar,

Making sure that our work is built on a solid foundation of 
practicality is one of my main aims, and so far, IMHO we've done that 
to the best of our ability.


At 5:19 PM -0400 3/19/07, Sukumar Dwarkanath wrote:
>Not a problem - thanks for the clarification. My intention was not to
>cause grief - you have been instrumental, with a few others, in a lot of
>work that has been accomplished by the committee and I just wanted to
>make sure we were all on the same page and the SMEs do not read this
>email in the wrong way, as I did. 
>I agree in that we need to learn lessons and recognize that some of the
>work may be more time consuming than what we, or others, expect. I guess
>we should start with the assumption that a task will take a good amount
>of work, whatever shape the requirements are in.
>-----Original Message-----
>From: Rex Brooks [mailto:rexb@starbourne.com]
>Sent: Monday, March 19, 2007 3:38 PM
>To: Sukumar Dwarkanath; Timothy Grapes; Rex Brooks;
>tgrapes@evotechinc.com; emergency-msg@lists.oasis-open.org;
>Subject: RE: [emergency-if] EDXL-AT & Situational Awareness
>My apologies Sukumar,
>I misspoke on that. My thinking was colored by the fact that, I
>believe the work had been described as having been developed over a
>fairly long period of time and was in a more advanced state of
>development that, if I recall correctly, was described as not needing
>as thorough-going, from-scratch an approach or effort on our part.
>However, that is not what I would characterize as a candidate
>specification, so I gladly stand corrected.
>I also intended no disparagement of SMEs, per se, as long as they
>don't assume, or are not expected or required to assume that their
>expertise extends to areas where it is, in fact, not appropriate. I
>agree we absolutely MUST work with SMEs, and my comments may have
>gotten out of bounds. As I said, I stand corrected.
>I have been reviewing some decidedly worrisome efforts by extremely
>well-intentioned and extremely well-qualified groups in areas where
>none of us can afford to allow processes and approaches that are not
>well founded to be carried forward into specifications, especially in
>the areas of health and emergency management, where poor reality
>testing, poor conceptual methodology and poor  follow-through can, in
>fact, harm us all. That definitely is coloring my thinking lately,
>and the fact that these efforts are two and three and five years
>along a path that is proving problematic is downright depressing.
>My intent was to remind us that we need to make sure we learn our
>lessons well, and being persuaded that a completely necessary piece
>of work may in fact be submitted to us with an expectation that we
>can complete our task of building a workable specification with it in
>less time than we are usually able to do this because it has been
>heavily worked on by experts is not something I think is advisable.
>The problem is in the "expectation of less time due to expert input."
>My secondary point is that we should also be keen to learn from our
>experience and devise ways in which we can reasonably expect to
>improve our work product and perhaps lessen the time needed to
>complete our tasks.
>At 2:05 PM -0400 3/19/07, Sukumar Dwarkanath wrote:
>>   >> EDXL-HAVE, in my opinion, proves beyond a shadow of a doubt that
>>accepting >>candidate specifications by groups of SMEs is almost always
>>a mistake. SMEs rarely >>fully understand how broad, yet rigorous, the
>>specification-writing process needs to be.
>>>>   We have now had to PAINFULLY deal with the consequences of being
>>persuaded that >>the SMEs know their area best and that means they are
>>the best group to write a >>specification for that area, instead of
>  >carefully working through a rigorous requirements-writing process.
>>I am not sure how you characterize a candidate specification but
>>EDXL-HAVE was submitted in the format that the EM TC requested - as a
>>requirements specification - and not as a candidate specification.
>>As I see it, the practitioners/SMEs do know their area best - I do not
>>believe that will change - we should recognize this and work with the
>>practitioners to leverage their domain expertise.
>Rex Brooks
>President, CEO
>Starbourne Communications Design
>GeoAddress: 1361-A Addison
>Berkeley, CA 94702
>Tel: 510-849-2309

Rex Brooks
President, CEO
Starbourne Communications Design
GeoAddress: 1361-A Addison
Berkeley, CA 94702
Tel: 510-849-2309

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