Re: OT: ISO standards who? (was Re: French character names ingucharmap)

On Sat, 2003-12-20 at 08:59, Roozbeh Pournader wrote:

I welcome related OT discussions in this list. Thanks.
But actions would have to move elsewhere I guess.

> On Sat, 2003-12-20 at 00:07, Keld Jørn Simonsen wrote:
> > I think we should even use Microsoft specs
> > if it would help our users,
> We are already doing that by going OpenType.

Exactly ... 
> > In most industrialized countries 

... but not loosing the plot and being selfish continuously trying to
improove ... see Why silgrphaite? at

> all companies are allowed to go to the 
> > standards commitees. I think the standards organizations are obliged to 
> > allow all companies.
> You may not be a company. You may only be a random expert.

In the case of Tamil (not a high economic domain) and probably many
others, the few within the negligible 'high economic' bracket seem to be
encouraged to form closed groups and adopt disgusting practices.
To sit with the representatives from large multinational corps on issues
to do with  major decision making (those that we would use terms like
'even' to associate with standards) has become the norm!
[I recently found out that even to participate in general discussions
relating to Unicode take up is behind a $10 membership fee barrier,
individual egos etc..all negative stuff.]
(Apart from the obvious principles I find a $10 charge and ways to get
it across impossible. I live in the UK BTW) 

> > I understand that in some countries this is not so, and it is hard to
> > get into the work there. I feel (but am not sure) that these countries
> > are amongst them that have a real hard time getting heard at all on the
> > international scene anyhow.
> Nice point. So ISO process is not good either. Some things are better,
> some things are worse.

Totally agree.

I hope the work of efforts like openi18n [] unite with
other efforts like and be effective in countering  some
of the dysfunctional aspects of ISO.
Maybe I got it wrong here... please let me know.

> > Open standards are publically available specifications defined by a
> > standardization organisation with an open process.
> ISO standards are not publicly available for random access (e.g.,
> quoting a section number in an email and make sure a random reader can
> go and check it, or read the rest). W3C ones are. Unicode is. I believe
> accessible standard are more important than open process standards in a
> free software community. (Of course, *better* standards are the most
> important. If ISO HTML was better than W3C HTML, people would have gone
> for that instead.)
> Also, both W3C and Unicode have an open process of standardization.
In the case of of Unicode they, whoever that is who takes decisions must
be really daft to let them selves be used by the negative setups like
the one I described above.

> They're just picky about the level of participation and who has the
> right to vote. In ISO, bureaucracy is a barrier, in Unicode and W3C
> money is. 
ah I see. If anyone has any links to any organised efforts underway to
highlight and rectify the resulting issues please point me there (best
offlist I think)

> All of them listen to you, of course, to make sure the
> standards are competent.
But while trying to get the standards organised one risks rocking the
local 'boat' too much which is not good in the interest of the end user,
to whom such headaches should be opaque. Big dilema.

So just having a review process after making ill thought out decisions
without any considerations for the intended end user is itself not
adequate enough IMHO.

All the best,


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