Re: off-topic overview of standards

Date: Fri Jan 26 2001 - 11:32:56 EST

In a message dated 2001-01-26 6:37:02 Pacific Standard Time, writes:

> > The reason I ask, is I am looking to explain to others, the value
> > of standards and standards participation, as well to provide an
> > overview of the technologies "standards" address, as well as the
> > relation between them.
> Unfortunately,I know of no such doc, but it's definitely worth doing. There
> are, alas, still far too many who believe everyone should speak English,
> and can't see the benefits of international enabling of software from the
> outset - it's an add-on feature rather than a primary requirement.

This isn't limited to Unicode or even to other i18n-related standards,
either. There are far too many who believe in inventing new local
"standards" in cases where perfectly good (and probably better thought-out)
standards already exist. For example, I had a supervisor who decided to
invent his own three-letter abbreviations for country names.... It's one
thing not to know that ISO 3166 exists, but it's another thing not to even
bother to find out.

Such a document would indeed be useful. Markus Kuhn has done some
interesting work along these lines (I am thinking in particular of his papers
on ISO 8601 and international paper size). You might try contacting him.

-Doug Ewell
 Fullerton, California

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