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This is mainly to get this discussion going. I don't think this is too controversial, although trying to drum up support to get this thing going is not going to be trivial. Please feel free to add comments to this discussion page.

  • You should keep a clearer distinction between existing standards and new standards. The appropriate place for existing standards is Wikisource. Explanations and commentaries for those standards should go into Wikibooks. However, for new standards, yes, there may be merit in your proposal. But you must explain how it would help, rather than hinder the Free Standards Group. If they are getting traction, then surely we should get behind them instead of splitting the community. Standards work best when there is consensus and interoperability, rather than a host of incompatible, competing standards. GeorgeStepanek 21:07, 5 Feb 2005 (UTC)
Second my surport of GeorgeStepanek's view en:tooto
@Free Standards Group - competition can have its benefits Tobias Conradi 05:08, 21 Mar 2005 (UTC)

You could simply start the project under Wikibooks without any further approval required. --Ezra Wax 03:36, 10 Mar 2005 (UTC)

A problem with Wikibooks is that you wouldn't have to colaborative situation that needs to occur to get a standard published. Also, Wikibooks is more about textbooks and (not explicitly) manuals. While standards documentation certainly can get published via Wikibooks (and even offer collabortive development), it is not per se a textbook in the sense that it is something you would want to teach a class out of. In addition, there are special features that would have to be added to Wikisource (eventually) that would "freeze" an official standard or limit on a temporary basis the ability to edit the standard documentation. These editing features would be unique to Wikistandards, and simply are not needed for WikiBooks.

what is the topic[edit]

So would this "standards wiki" be limited to talking about documents produced by "official" standards organizations (ISO, IEEE, ITU, W3C, etc.)? Discussing the ambiguities in the standards, the annoyances, work-arounds, and proposals to fix them? As well as pointing out when particular standards are obsolete, and which standard is the recommended replacement?

Or would this wiki also support people attempting to develop entirely protocols that he hopes would become standard, and hoping for community input so he doesn't accidentally make his standard flawed in some way ? (Difficult to implement, not robust against errors, bad interactions when used at the same time as some other standard, forward-compatibility issues, etc.). (Such proposed standards would of course be marked with "DRAFT" in big letters). The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk • contribs) .

No, this is not limited to documents produced by the official standards bodies, but rather a place to help draft new standards or perhaps talk about problems and issues of the official standards and help improve them. The development of new standards really is the major push here, as is a need to even make these standards available.
You should note that the #1 reason that standards developers (including or especially the official bodies you mentioned) give for requiring a fee just to even see the standards is to help pay for the process of creating the standard including travel expenses and conference rooms used in the standard creation, as well as to help pay for the network bandwidth that is used to serve up the documents.
If you note with this as a Wikimedia project, the travel and conference costs would be eliminated for the most part (except for perhaps something at Wikimania) as the standards would be developed on-line and the standards participants would be telecommuting. In addition, the network bandwidth would be part of the costs incurred by the Wikimedia Foundation, that already has many different sponsors and there would undoubtedly be some people willing to help donate to the WMF just to keep a Wikistandards project going.
Based on my experience with developing Wikimedia project policies, I think that developing standards on-line would be even more effective than developing an encyclopedia. The MediaWiki editing style is almost perfect for standards development, as you can argue on-line in a semi-permanent format each section of a standard and make minor changes in a collaborative fashion. You can also "roll-back" changes and do other issues that are common to standards development. With page protection and other administrative tools, you can even move from preliminary draft stages to a more published format. --Roberth 17:40, 11 August 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]