Marshall Rose (mrose@TWG.COM)
Fri, 08 Jul 88 20:49:22 -0700
It is so tempting to simply flame at you two (Kastenholz and Smart)
but rather than do so I will explain, calmly, the errors of your
ways. Consider this a pronouncement of The Truth.
It is a mistake to, as Robert Smart suggests,
> Anyway we don't want the standard ISO documents on-line. They're
> incomprehensible (except for the CLN documents which are nice). What
> we want is a description of the protocols that us ordinary folk can
re-edit the ISO documents and then distribute them. The ISO
documents use a consistent OSI terminology and are perfectly
comprehensible from the basis of that framework. Three years ago I
was unable to read an OSIfied document and make sense out of it.
Today I am able to, and can tell you that the network layer
documents aren't really any better or worse than any of the other
OSI documents with respect to readability. In fact, if you want to
read a truly outrageous document, get a copy of "The Internal
Organization of the Network Layer" (the IONL), which will convince
any thinking person that the TCP/IP architecture is vastly superior
to the full-blown OSI network layer.
The reason why the ISO documents are copyrighted is not so Omnicom
can make a paltry sum of money on each standard (the ~$1000 figure
is for their update service in which they filter the output of
standards bodies for you and send you the things that you are
interested in seeing). The real reason is so that
NO ONE WILL EDIT THEM AND MAKE THE CLAIM THAT THE RESULT IS
RELATED TO THE ORIGINAL STANDARD
The problem with having anyone edit them is that you lose meaning
and misinform. OSI documents make sense once you learn the lingo.
It is more formal than the language used in the DARPA/NSF Internet
community (plain English) but it is not as bad as the way the Inca
of Peru used to write things down (they stored information on
strings, carefully knotted in a specific manner and with colored thread).
Now, having told you The Truth, keep in mind that I think that it
would be nice for someone to write a moderately lengthy explanation
of what each OSI standard is saying, and to write that in a more
easy to understand format. It would be less accurate, but would be
useful for getting across the gist of things. However, editing
standards and the like is simply the wrong way to do it.
ps: The word "OSIfy" is a new word that I invented earlier this year.
The precise meaning is:
"to obscure, to make unclear for no good reason"
It is often used in the context of the output of standards
committees, although its use is not limited to committees which
produce OSI standards. In fact, some might claim that MILSTD 1778
is an OSIfied version of RFC793.
This archive was generated by hypermail 2.0b3 on Thu Mar 09 2000 - 14:42:50 GMT