Re: Data, the Reverse Salient of Software.

David Crook (
Tue, 17 Feb 1998 09:26:20 -0800

I Find Karma wrote:
> MYTH #1: The Web (as programmable platform) succeeded because of CGI.
> TRUTH: Forms are relevant, not CGI. HTML FORMs are the real contribution
> of the Web to software module interconnection.

Adam, when you stating these sections called "TRUTH" you are really
starting to bug me. They look like well informed opionions, but they
still look like opinions. Now I will be the first the admin that CGI,
well, sucks. Its slow, but its reasonbly platform-independant to
implement. But, before there was CGI, THERE WERE NO FORMS. Its like
saying the sun is not revelant but the light that gets to our planet
is. Now I know there are lots of non-CGI programming methods of
processing forms now, but back in the primordial muck that was the web
no FORMS, no CGI. BTW, I have always thought of forms as being a clunky
interface. The kind of thing that a programmer just threw together
because it seemed like a good model for data input rather than something
that was purposly done that way for design's sake. Why elevate them in
such a degree?

> MYTH #2: Transport mechanisms are relevant.

Sorry Adam, I do have to jump on you on this one. Here, try this truism
on for size "No Transport mechanism, no communication". That to me
implies that the the mechanism itself will have some effect on the
communication itself.

> MYTH #3: The Web is not an object system.

Last time I checked, the thing we call the web is just a system for
displaying a few tech papers that got WAY out of hand. We could be
doing all of our web pages in LATEX or nroff (shudder) if the guys over
at cern didn't make up a watered down SGML version for displaying a few
documents on unix systems. I dare you to tell me they envisioned "an
object system" when they made up http.
> MYTH #4: Code is expensive and data is ephemeral.

Code is still expensive. Its always been relatively expensive despite
DECADES of people saying that the next big thing in software was
suddenly going to make it cheap any day now. Now, this is just my
opinion, but I think that its ALWAYS going to be expensive or at least
stay that way for a long time.

> Finally, a word or two on the hype behind XML. There's a lot of it. We
> contribute to it as often as we can. We think it's important to get the
> word out to the 97%.

Whoa. Lets look at that statement it little, its a wee be pretentious.
"Get the word out to the 97%". I'm sorry, but that is INSULTING. I'm
finishing a Masters degree in this stuff and I've been working
professionally as a programmer for almost 7 years now and I'm lumped in
the unwashed 97%. My opinion is just as revelent as they guy who just
got his first AOL disk just because I'm not in the object church. I
have news for you, you have got to work on your evangelizing skills.
You aren't informing. You are ANNOYING. Professionals in the field are
not going to LISTEN you with this kind of attitude.

Just thought I would point that out.