PWG> "Draft Standard" is an oxymoron

PWG> "Draft Standard" is an oxymoron

PWG> "Draft Standard" is an oxymoron

Harry Lewis harryl at
Fri Jan 31 15:03:23 EST 2003

I propose we draft a working draft of a proposal for drafting draft 
standards proposals. Oh.. that's right.. we did that once...

Seriously... can we move off the topic of how the brain and tongue work 
together and focus on what appeared to be the issues with substance from 
yesterday's call?

1. 3 tier or 2 tier. We had a 3 step process but I'm willing to reduce 
this to 2 steps based on our experience
  - We used to call our 3 step process Proposed, Draft and Standard
  - We can call our 2 step process anything but I think Proposed and 
Standard were the most vocal (Draft and Standard does fit better in my 
brain... but then there is this endless debate.. anyone got a coin)?

2. Versioning 
  - <major>.<minor>.<revision>
  - date coded

We have documents in or nearing last call which really depend on closure.
Harry Lewis 
IBM Printing Systems 

"Hastings, Tom N" <hastings at>
Sent by: owner-pwg at
01/31/2003 12:35 PM
        To:     "Farrell, Lee" <Lee.Farrell at>
        cc:     "PWG (E-mail)" <pwg at>
        Subject:        RE: PWG> "Draft Standard" is an oxymoron

Lee and Bill,
The problem is what do you call successive versions of the Draft Standard, 
before you are ready to send it out for Last Call?
Working Drafts of the Draft Standard?
Using "Draft" in two different senses in the same sentence to identify a 
document is pretty confusing.  And we know that people in normal 
conversion like to drop the adjectives and just talk about the "Draft". So 
which do they mean when they say the "Draft is ...".
-----Original Message-----
From: Farrell, Lee [mailto:Lee.Farrell at]
Sent: Thursday, January 30, 2003 18:33
To: PWG (E-mail)
Subject: RE: PWG> "Draft Standard" is an oxymoron

[If people can understand "jumbo shrimp" without losing sleep, I don't see 
why "draft standard" would cause a problem.]
-----Original Message-----
From: Harry Lewis [mailto:harryl at]
Sent: Thursday, January 30, 2003 6:05 PM
To: Hastings, Tom N
Cc: pwg at
Subject: Re: PWG> "Draft Standard" is an oxymoron

Er... Um... so why is it so hard to put the definition to use and realize 
that a "Draft Standard" is a preliminary version of a "Standard"? 
Harry Lewis 
IBM Printing Systems 

"Hastings, Tom N" <hastings at> 
Sent by: owner-pwg at 
01/30/2003 04:24 PM 
        To:        pwg at 
        Subject:        PWG> "Draft Standard" is an oxymoron

Here is why I think that "Draft Standard" is an oxymoron.  Draft is too
fleeting.  Standard is meant to be more stable.

So I looked up the word "Draft" in the dictionary.  Webster's Seventh
Collegiate Dictionary says:

"a preliminary sketch, outline, or version".

We all use the word "draft" (or "working draft") to mean the document that
we update rapidly to get to a version that we all consider stable enough 
have a Last Call.

So one of the appealing suggestions made at today's call was to just 
section 3.4 Draft Standard and have only 3.4 Proposed Standard and 3.6
Standard.  Both have to have a series of drafts to be reviewed to lead up 
being an approved Proposed Standard or an approved Standard.  And both 
to have a draft that is considered good enough to both trying a Last Call
and then the Last Call has to actually pass.

I think much of our trouble is terminology, so fixing the terminology, and
deleting a step seems to be a good thing to do and is NOT abandoning the
process or overturning turnips.


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