[foaf-protocols] W3C WebID review

Henry Story henry.story at gmail.com
Fri Aug 20 16:59:30 CEST 2010

On 20 Aug 2010, at 16:01, Manu Sporny wrote:

> Hi Henry,
> Thanks for the clarifications of your intent - it helps to shed some
> light on your thinking. I understand a bit more where you are coming
> from and have only picked out the bits that I disagree with below - so
> while this e-mail may seem negative, it is not intended to be - rather,
> I think we have some understanding at this point and can move on.

Thanks for your reply. I read it carefully, but in the interest of not going on forever here, I'll just summarise my take on it.

   Issues of private and public are really complex. (I have a few books on my reading list to help me work this out...) For now, I see the following. The importance of privacy is partly related to issues of time management. You can't involve everyone in a conversation just because that would either reduce its depth or never allow it to finish. Especially a conversation whose aim is an action, since an action is time based.

   On this list we are very open - very much in the mould of the IETF. The advantage of this is that it is a way to reach consensus and one can get insights from people coming from very different backgrounds. The result is a protocol that is very resilient. The disadvantage is that sometimes the traffic is so strong that one has difficulty keeping open to all the ideas that are thrown at us. Hence the IETF motto: consensus and working code. 

   Hence the growing importance of process. You have been helping us here a lot setting up a conf call, getting the initial spec writing launched, and organising the review at the W3C. That is a great contribution. It is really nice to see this initiative.  Getting bugs and issues logged is a good idea too. That will allow us to respond to these issues one by one and in due course, and give us the feeling that we are making progress, as well as allowing external people to express themselves.

   Most importantly we need the process to give us all time to build better examples apps because those are often the fastest way to convince people of what we are doing. A demo is worth a thousand documents :-)




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