Archive for January 15th, 2008

Standards and Interoperability

January 15th, 2008

There’s a lot to be saId about standards, and I hope to have some good discussions to guide Mozilla’s work in this area. But before jumping into the discussion of how things are today, or how they might be better, I’d like to start with some basic topics. Some may seem obvious, and maybe even dumb. But even so, I’d like to see how great a shared understanding there is.

To start with, why do you think standards matter? What’s the most basic reason we care about them?

To me, it’s interoperability. There are a lot of corollaries, or caveats and drawbacks that result from this, but the fundamental principle is interoperability. If one didn’t care about interoperability I suspect the interest in standards would drop dramatically. I see “standards” and “standards bodies” and “standards compliance” are the means we use to achieve the goal of interoperability. I see them not as an end in themselves, but as the best tool we have found to achieve this fundamental principle.

Does interoperability seem like the right fundamental principle to you? Are there other ideas you see as more important, or at odds with the primacy of interoperability? If so, please let me know.

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