Friday, October 10, 2003

Hal Varian does interop

Hal Varian (of "Information Rules" fame) has done some Office application interop tests.
I particularly recommend the "Waging a Standards War" stuff that Varian and Shapiro write about in that book and elsewhere. Fascinating. I wrote about it in Its Science Jim, but not as we know it..

A really, really bad idea

Compromisiming on standalone readability by *people* is, unfortunately one of the classic premature optimisations in the XML world. The essence of XML is the yin/yang between people and machines. Tilt too far in either direction and the noosphere weeps.
The rss-data proposal tilts too far away from people in favour of machines. There is no point in teeing up a data structure for the agregations in terms of dates, strings and integers and calling it XML. It is XML is syntax only, not in spirit. If you really want to do that, use ASN.1 or something.

The business of the social side of business

Enabling the social dimension of effective e-business is an ITWorld article I wrote concerning the increasingly important role technology will play in the social side of e-business.
We have technology to connect the computers of businesses together. But this capability does not amount to a hill of beans unless businesses can find each other. Straight forward search only goes so far - hence all the world's golf clubs:-)

Wednesday, October 08, 2003

Getting Python

Getting Python. Amen brother.

Dealing with outliers in XML data models

Eliott Rusty Harold points out a home truth about real world data. You have to model what you find and what you find will invariable contain some totally off-the-way, give-that-document-an-enema type weirdness.
What to do? Three things:
(1) grok profit center versus cost center markup.
(2) grok the power of pattern/rule based validation as a compliment to grammer based validation.
(3) Treat validation as a process not an atomic action - linear process pipes are your friend.

Tuesday, October 07, 2003