Re: [dssslist] On ISO

Subject: Re: [dssslist] On ISO
From: "Pavel Tolkachev" <pavel.tolkachev@xxxxxx>
Date: Thu, 23 Jun 2005 09:43:22 -0400
Hello Javi,

I am so glad I am not the only one :-)..

By the way, DSSSL story is one of those lucky exceptions.. At least it is available for the public here for free because US DoE happily spent some US taxpayer's money for the development of this standard. Their copyright seems a bit restrictive, but I guess they are overcareful in it. In fact, according to US laws it is not DoE's but the US taxpayer's right to have in public access the information developed with the taxpayer's money. They use to play more or less fair with this law.. not anymore.. now they can put a national security label on almost any material and hide it from the public this way.

Not sure whether you could use the text in your book if you took it from this site.. you might need a lawyer to tell you. But, at least, the ISO copyright did not forbid Norman Walsh to convert the standard in more convenient forms (Windows HELP etc) and contribute back to DOE Web site: Not sure about the commercial use though..

This might be the reason why the more or less considerable number of people know about DSSSL at all :-).

C++ standard used to be another lucky exception: ANSI used to have an arrangement with ISO (obviously) and sell it for $18, whereas as per ISO price codes, it would cost many hundred.,


             Javier Farreres <spanish@xxxxxxxxx>                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              
             06/23/2005 02:50 AM                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           To 
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                                                                                                                                                                                              dssslist@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         Subject 
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        [dssslist] On ISO                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     

Hi Pavel

The subject title is not trying

>1. People do not cry out loud about the things that are free and just silently perform. Just no need..
Yes yes, I understand what you mean. I am just wandering why, if there
are companies working with DSSSL, why are they so quiet. When the
argument starts, noone sais I work with DSSSL.

>2. Another reason for XML/XSLT popularity vs SGML/DSSSL is that the fomer pair are readily available (and more or less readable) W3C standards and the second belongs to ISO. To me ISO is a patented cemetery for good technical ideas for 2 reaons:
>2.1. Its pricing and copyright policies make the standards hardly affordable to the students, who are IMHO one of themain workhorse of the technical progress.
>2.2. The ISO's passion to perfection makes the standards hardly readable even for the seasoned practitioners.
I think I must agree. I didn't know all these things until I got the
DSSSL book published. We had to contact ISO for publishing rights.
Although I copied no part of it, some isolated paragraphs were so well
written in the standard that I couldn't think of a better explanation
but the standard one. They asked for a mad quantity of money, which
obliged me to remove a bunch of paragraphs from the book.

But, on the other hand, I think ISO is a more reliable source, when we
talk about international standards, than W3C. But I am perhaps wrong on



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