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Subject: Re: [office] Possible teleconference with Burton


Duane Nickull wrote:
> Patrick:
> I am going to disagree with you:
And I with you: ;-)
> On 1/22/08 1:19 PM, "Patrick Durusau" <patrick@durusau.net> wrote:
> <SNIP/> 
>> Let me put it another way:
>> Start with a source language, any source language. You want to
>> standardize a target for the conversion of that source language, with
>> some additional features that do not appear in the source language.
>> Is it meaningful to standardize a target language in the absence of a
>> mapping from the source language?
> DN: why not?  There are many standards like PDF, *.doc (various versions),
> ODF, HTML, etc that can be mapped to from many constructs like code, text,
> etc.  Defining the target language enables those who want to convert to have
> a target.  It would literally be impossible to create a comprehensive
> mapping to and from all formats.  If someone wants to map, they have a
> source format, a target format and a complete sub industry called
> "Middleware" (for better or worse).
I think you are confusing two separate and distinct cases:

1) A vocabulary is developed, be it PDF/Postscript/RTF/etc. The purpose 
of the format is to represent text, etc. There is no "source language" 
justification, all these stand on their own.

Granted, others may decide to create mappings to those formats but the 
purpose of the formats was not to be a target of some particular source 
file format.

2) A vocabulary is developed, reportedly, at least it is what the 
standard says, because it was necessary to represent "faithfully" 
billions of legacy documents.

That implies some relationship, at least in the mind of the drafters 
between the legacy documents and the target language. In other words, 
one presumes that some features (not all, some are entirely new) appear 
in the target language because they represent some set of features in 
the source files.

Another important factor is that this it taking place in ISO.

If I wanted to simply develop and post a format, target or otherwise and 
post it to my website, or to YouTube, ;-), or whatever, there are no 
constraints on that format.

If on the other hand, I want to have that format approved as an ISO 
standard, a different set of considerations come into play.

I think part of what has been missed all along in this process is the 
*incorrect* assumption that proposers of standards in ISO get to dictate 
what will be in the ultimate version of the standard. To its credit, TC 
45 and MS have not done so and have tried to answer many concerns. I 
simply think there are remaining concerns that need further answers.

>> If a mapping is standardized, then there is no need for an open source
>> project to produce one.
> DN: false.  The standard and the implementation of a standard are two
> different things.  Having a bunch of text that explains how to map from A to
> B does not physically map A to B, just provides the information.  Someone
> still have to build it.  In fact, without the implementation to prove it
> works, the theory on mapping is not proven.
Err, read more carefully, I wasn't talking about implementations, only 

There is always a need for open source implementations.
>> Unless the community wanted one that was
>> different from the one specified in the standard. But as I noted
>> originally, there is no such mapping in the proposed standard.
> DN: I could map several things to OOXML.  I can create OOXML from PDF with
> Java, CPP, MXML, Actionscript and others.
And? As I said, there is no mapping in the standard. That is what is at 
issue. Not that many other mappings are possible. I readily grant that.
>> Hope you are having a great day!
> DN: am having a great day except for looking out my window and seeing
> Cypress mountain ski resort buried under 15 feet of snow with me sitting
> inside working. ;-)

It is just a slow, cold rain in Covington, Georgia. Has been very 
unpleasant for the last 3 or 4 days. It is our "cold" season. Will be in 
the 50's or 60's next week. ;-)

Email will wait! Enjoy the snow!


> Cheers!
> Duane
>> Patrick
>>> For the record, I am not an MS fan and use a Mac.
>>> Duane

Patrick Durusau
Chair, V1 - US TAG to JTC 1/SC 34
Convener, JTC 1/SC 34/WG 3 (Topic Maps)
Editor, OpenDocument Format TC (OASIS), Project Editor ISO/IEC 26300
Co-Editor, ISO/IEC 13250-1, 13250-5 (Topic Maps)

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