The phrase “de facto standard” can denote anything from proprietary tyranny to a healthy, vibrant, market. What makes a standard viable without the formal blessing of a standards organization? Should you use such informal standards, or ignore them?
Naturally occurring standards
2005-04-13 General Development 7 Comments
I sure wish DjVu would become one of those de facto standards. Adobe blows!
And what is the problem with the general industry not supporting ogg? Honestly, are they just stupid?
When speaking of “de facto standars” Postcript jumps out of my mind.
PS was created in a commercial company (Adobe), openly published (the Red and Blue books) but (as far as I know) never standarized by a formal organization.
It made posible the transition of the whole printing industry from lead-type (invented by Gutemberg, XVth century) to digital (with the help of Aldus Pagemaker and Linotronics).
The product was paid by hardware manufacturers.
Photoshop is (IMHO) another example of quality de facto standard. A paid-by-the-user one, that remains (almost the) king against a strong (an even free, as in GIMP) competition.
Same facts are true with Acrobat, but free. (Do someone remember that Acrobat Reader 1.0 was a paid product?)
QuickTime file format, a company developed format, was taken as the default file format for DV or MPEG standar (I do not remember which one, exactly).
In the “dark side”, Office is a “de facto standard” made up (IMHO) from laziness to chose, by IT managers and/or common people. The product is paid-by-the-user an secrecy (as far to the file format) is part of the difficult to get ride of it.
But I do not think that a “general rule” is attainable. Java tryed to go the PS way but could not get the same result (maybe MS is too big…).
This is pretty much the issue faced by Sun with Java. There are open source java jre’s, the issue that everyone is upset about is having Sun certify to use the Java trademark.
There is always going to be some overlap between the introduction of a technology and its adoption as a standard, look at Digium with IAX. IAX is very common and is a de-facto standard as compared with SIP which is a standard. This is a matter of opinion but I feel that IAX is superior to SIP
Some companies do … I think the UT2k3/2k4 games use OGG as their audio format.
I guess it’s not adapted by other companies because you can’t just force a DRM layer on top of it.
Well, you could be like Hixie and give shit to things like REST because they’re based on existing standards
Funny he didn’t mention IBM’s Micro Channel Architecture snafu. Great bus interface but when it was released IBM got greedy and didn’t want to release the specs for it so others could make MCA cards. Eventually EISA,Vesa Local Bus and eventuallt PCI totally dominated bus architecture and IBM MCA bus disapeared very fast. Kinda like the first 64-bit console system circa 1993 the Atari Jaguar. Atari wanted to be the only company making games for the system guess what all the games sucked and it seemed like the system wasn’t even around for a year. Ironic that IBM manufactured the Jaguar.
I like the site layout.At least here you get a lot of relevant links and info.