Moving beyond disillusionment

Len Bullard cbullard at
Fri Oct 8 17:32:08 BST 1999

Dave Winer wrote:
> This is still a standards body, not a development community.

That's the rub.  You say you need cooperation.  On what?  How?

Quit writing standards.  You aren't empowered for that.  
Start writing specs but first do a better job at writing 
requirements.   Specs are easy to share.  Start implementing specs and 
modifying them based on results.  Take the specs to a 
legitimate and competent standards bodies for publication.  
Consortia are a good source of specs because their 
members have customers with immediate requirements.  They 
are a bad way to write standards because the customer 
requirements and the vendor interests dominate the 
discussion with short range objectives.  

Inner loop and outer loop.  The inner loop is what people  
refer to when they talk about "internet time".  Think 
about nesting internet time inside project time and 
put that outer loop in the hands of organizations that 
are empowered and practiced for long term projects.  Quit cheerleading 
people and start cheerleading requirements.  The way out 
of disillusionment is to practice collaboration and 
understand what is easy and quick versus what is hard 
but stable:  learning.  Enterprises that thrive learn.  

The web can't do that for you.  It destabilizes your 
processes and drives you back and forth, willy nilly 
across the same ground.  It does not produce coherence.  
It wastes energy.  It repeats history.  Worse, it loses 
referential integrity of concepts so learning is 
serendipitous at best and superstitious at worst. 

The web does not learn.  It imitates.


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