Re: Inventor + n-dimensions

Brian Behlendorf (
Wed, 22 Jun 1994 13:55:56 -0700 (PDT)

On Wed, 22 Jun 1994, Lar Kaufman wrote:
> In other words, Open Inventor file format should be formally and explicitly
> "free" or we should think twice about accepting it. A major issue is the
> question of who amends the standard. I'm suspicious of any standard where
> a for-profit corporation has control of further development of the standard.

We don't necessarily need an agreement that nothing will change in
Inventor, all we need is an agreement that whatever new data types get
created as a result of this effort will be able to continue to work,
and that pasers, browsers, and authoring tools can be created
royalty-free. I think there are enough companies using Inventor
currently that it's definitely not in their interest to change
low-level constructs at this point. I'm sure SGI also sees the
benefits of many people using a language they happen to be experts at,
even if the tools don't belong to SGI.

> You can work around this to some extent, as the Free Software Foundation did
> with GhostScript, but in fact, Adobe still has the control and thus the
> competitive advantage in PostScript development. I'd go a bit further and
> suggest that we should go for a standard that would be controlled by an
> organization such as the FSF, GCA, or X/Open after it is adopted and ironed
> out.

I heartily agree. HTML has suffered, in my opinion, because the
defacto standard became "what XMosaic can do" and "but it looks fine
in Mosaic!", etc. There are now efforts underway to standardize the
current level as HTML 2.0 and make tables and forms and such HTML 3.0,
but they are sort of working backwards from the way I'd like to see
this go.