Re: Industry Standard's Net 21

Ka-Ping Yee (
Thu, 24 Jun 1999 14:28:04 -0700 (PDT)

On Thu, 24 Jun 1999, Robert S. Thau wrote:
> Whether you like marca's attitude towards formal standards or standard
> processes, or to having his company's software respect the letter of
> such laws as there were (and let me be plain --- I don't), he still
> was instrumental in getting HTML and HTTP *deployed*, in whatever
> form, even if you think he debased them somewhat in the process.

Though, like you, i'm annoyed by Netscape's lack of respect for
standards, it's really not the attitude that bothers me the most.

If they were going to implement this stuff and make it big, at least
they could have done it with the tiniest bit of *competence*.

And in that i include both engineering competence and design
competence. With each new version of their software Netscape is
working hard to achieve near-Microsoft crash rates (a remarkable
accomplishment in itself).

As for the design side of things, i think they were reckless with
a standard (ad-hoc or otherwise) they *knew* was going to affect
millions upon millions of people. They had a big responsibility
to do things right -- or even *halfway* intelligently -- and yet
they didn't even take the time to think about their design mistakes
before unleashing them on the world.

> is, in my view, to seriously distort the picture of
> events, and to paint Netscape and Marca personally as more of a
> villain than they deserve).

I tend to think of Netscape more as bumbling rather than villainous.
Though, given the situation they were in, perhaps you could call it
"criminal negligence."

-- ?!ng

"A child of five could understand this! Now fetch me a child of five."