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Richard Conn <[log in to unmask]>
Sat, 15 Jul 2000 08:50:49 -0400
text/plain (76 lines)
Hi, Mike,

I'm glad you see my point about the term "standard."  I don't think
it's necessary to try to distinguish unless it means something to make
the distinction.

If you read my trip report from Tech Ed 2000, you'll note my reference
to Bill Gates' book "Business @ The Speed of Thought."  It's worth while
to note that he is not making any such distinction (and the thousands of
CEOs that read and appreciate his book are much likely to think in his
terms).  The term "standard" isn't even in the glossary of his book,
and the chapters of the book speak in high-level terms about concepts,
not technology.  However, he does dive into Windows 2000 technology somewhat
in the Appendix.  Interestingly enough, the appendix is entitled "Build
Digital Processes on Standards."  I quote the first paragraph of this

""Business @ The Speed of Thought" describes the benefits of a digital
nervous system.  This appendix describes how to build one - the architecture
and implementation choices.  You build a digital nervous system with the new
digital technologies -- PC hardware, low-cost packaged software, and
protocols.  Because the new systems are build on standards, all the
pieces --
hardware, software, and communications -- are easier to put together.  This
appendix outlines a PC- and Windows-based methodology for building a digital
nervous system and explicitly covers Microsoft technology for creating a
flow of information."

Richard Conn, Principal Investigator
Reuse Tapestry

-----Original Message-----
From: Team Ada: Ada Advocacy Issues (83 & 95)
[mailto:[log in to unmask]]On Behalf Of Michael Feldman
Sent: Friday, July 14, 2000 9:04 PM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Standards

Rick et al,

My Prentice-Hall Dictionary of Computing says (1998, p.627):


Clearly defined and agreed-upon conventions for programming
intefaces. Standards may be (bullets mine)

- proprietary (used only within the environment provided by a single
  computer vendor),

- public (widely used across a variety of vendor equipment), or

- formal (developed by a standards organization such as ANSI or ISO)."

This is not the greatest definition, but it's the best I can find
just now in the literature, and it'll do.

Obviously Ada is both formal and public, and Visual Basic is
proprietary (at least if we take 'single computer vendor' to mean
'the Wintel family').

Rick, let's avoid confusion. I'll agree to use the terms "formal standard"
or "public standard" if you'll agree -- at least in Ada circles -- to
preface your references to Microsoft standards with "proprietary". That
qualification will resolve the overloading of  the term "standard",
and will make clear that Microsoft fans understand fully that
Microsoft's use of the term is very different from (say) Ada's.

Mike Feldman