Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Validating themes for Wordpress

George Bray has a new blog "Electric Telephone: Letters home from the high broadband future". One of the postings was on a 3G Wireless Antenna. While the content was good, the formatting of the blog was technically awful, with thousands of HTML: markup errors (inlcuyind hundreds of surplus ) and unnecessary CSS. George responded that he had used one of the supplied themes and a quick search showed there was a whole industry around fixing up poor Wordpress themes. I had assumed it was just Blogger which had non-standard poorly designed themes.

Also I found a W3C MobileOK Wordpress Plugin. It seems a shame that having a design which is quick to download, works reliably and is easy to read seems to be treated as an optional extra, rather than essential feature by the Blogging community.

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Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Open Web Education Alliance

W3C, the people who do web standards, have set up an Open Web Education Alliance Incubator Group, to foster education about web standards. See: News, Deliverables, Meetings. and Charter:

The goal of this Incubator Group is to bring together interested individuals, companies, and organizations with a strong interest in the field of educating Web professionals, to explore the needs and issues around the topic of Web development education. This Incubator Group will detail the options for establishing a group dedicated to bringing Web standards and best practices to the process of educating future professionals in Web professions, no matter where this training and education might be provided, and will define the goals, activities, and a clear mission for such an organization, and will seek to establish this organization's viability and role.

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Friday, October 24, 2008

Making web sites for a mobile devices and people with disabilities

The World Wide Web Consortium has released the final version of "Shared Web Experiences: Barriers Common to Mobile Device Users and People with Disabilities". This is intended to help those designing web sites for both mobile and disabled users. It catalogues the overlap between the W3C's mobile and accessibility standards. This is useful, but is is disappointing that W3C have failed to get their standards writers to agree on one common standard. Instead of having on standard, the W3C has two standards which say much the same thing, and leave it to each web designer to try to reconcile the differences themselves.


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Monday, August 11, 2008

Relationship Mobile Web and Web Accessibility

The W3C have issued a very odd document "Relationship between Mobile Web Best Practices (MWBP) and Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG)", which which brings new meaning to the term "nothing". It is not so much about the relationship between WCAG and MWBP, but the failure of the W3C to produce one. This document is the technical equivalent of Beckett's play: Waiting for Godot.

The working draft of 3 July 2008 tries to explain the relationships, overlaps and differences between the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) and the Mobile Web Best Practices (MWBP). But it seems to be a by-product of rivalry between W3C working groups, which will be largely unintelligible to outsiders.

The WCAG were primarily intended to make web pages accessible to people with disabilities (such as the blind). But they also had mobile devices in mind, taking into account small screens, slow Internet connections, limited keyboards and pointing devices. I have been teaching the use of the accessibility guidelines for mobile devices to students since 2001.

The Mobile Web Best Practices (MWBP) are the latest of many attempts to get web pages on mobile phones. Previous attempts failed, largely due to the extreme limitations of mobile devices and partly due to the mobile phone industry's different business models. Mobile devices now have bigger screens and more advanced web browsers, so making web pages is easier. But the MWBP's work is still needed to help designers take account of mobile limitations.

This relationship document is very strangely worded. It is not so much a technical report, as a political one. It asks the reader to first read Web Content Accessibility and Mobile Web: Making a Web Site Accessible Both for People with Disabilities and for Mobile Devices and Experiences Shared by People with Disabilities and by People Using Mobile Devices. Then it asks the reader to either read MWBP to WCAG 2.0 or MWBP to WCAG 1.0 and WCAG 2.0 to MWBP or WCAG 1.0 to MWBP. There is the a table which apparently tries to make this clear:
Done Doing next Then read
None Both WCAG 2.0 and MWBP WCAG 2.0 and MWBP Together
If that is not enough for the reader, it then refers them to the to the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines and Mobile Web Best Practices. Then referring to yet another document: "Experiences Shared by People with Disabilities and by People Using Mobile Devices [Editors' Draft, January 2008]".

At this point the document finally gets around to telling the reader something useful about the topic:
"The Mobile Web Best Practices (BP) are not assigned levels. MWBP relates to checkpoints of all the WCAG 1.0 priorities (1, 2 and 3) and to all the WCAG 2.0 level A, AA and AAA success criteria."
However, we are now almost at the end of the document. So far there has been only one sentence containing useful information on the topic.

What then follows is a paragraph explaining why there is no mapping table detailing differences between WCAG and MWBP, and so attempting to explain why this technical report fails in what it set out to do. Then there is an appendix attempting to redefine common English words to be "Special Terms": everything, nothing, partially, possibly, and something. The document then ends.

This reminds me of many public service ICT documents written by people who did not want to do something and who used a lot of words to obscure the fact that they had not done it. W3C should decide if they genuinely want to relate Mobile Web and Web Accessibility (which would be a good idea), or if it is too hard to do. If it is too hard, then this document should be rewritten to honestly say that, rather than trying to obscure the fact that two of the working groups do not want to cooperate.

As it is,
the document "Relationship between Mobile Web Best Practices (MWBP) and Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG)", is like Beckett's play Waiting for Godot, where the characters wait for someone named Godot, who never arrives. In the case of the W3C's report we wait for a relationship which never arrives.

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Tuesday, May 20, 2008

W3C on eGovernment

Jose Manuel Alonso will be talking on W3C on e-Government at the CSIRO ICT center in Canberra today. W3C are starting an eGovernment Interest Group in their technology and society section. However, I don't see this as useful, as the needs of governance of corporations and non-government bodies have all the same issues as governments. What we need are technologies which will work for all of these and across the sectors.

W3C on e-Government
Jose Manuel Alonso (W3C)

DATE: 2008-05-20
TIME: 12:30:00 - 13:30:00
LOCATION: CSIT Seminar Room, N101

It's no secret that just as the web has revolutionised business, the media, and many other parts of our lives, it is also revolutionising how governments and citizens interact, and how government provide services. But how to do it well is still something of a black art.

In this keynote presentation, the lead of the W3C's eGovernment initiative, José Manuel Alonso, looks at the opportunities the web provides governments, the challenges, old and new, the web poses, and the role of the W3C in helping to develop underlying, interoperable technologies with which to build these services.

José's presentation will cover best practices and methodologies for providing eGovernment services, and look at case studies of how governments and communities are connecting via the web around the world.

José is currently the eGovernment Lead at W3C. Prior to joining W3C, José was the Manager for the W3C Spain Office for three years and also served as the Advisory Committee Representative for CTIC (host of the Spain Office).

José has broad experience in project management, software integration, customer relationship, PR and IT consultancy. He received Bachelor's degree in Computer Science and Masters degree in Enterprise Application Integration, both from the University of Oviedo, where he also worked at its Research and Innovation departments as a researcher, developer and lecturer. He also worked previously as consultant and even founded his own Web company back in 1997.

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Monday, May 19, 2008

Wireless and Mobile Media in Asia for Disasters

Greeting from the official opening of the MobileMonday Global Summit. As with the Malaysian Corporate Governance Conference the opening was far more formal than in Australia, with Malaysian dignitaries as well as an the ambassador to Finland.

Also Madanmohan Rao from Bangalore introduced himself to me, as he was speaking next on the day on emergency us of mobiles. He has edited several books on mobiles and Internet in Asia. He started his talk on the "mobile mandate". He talked about how mobile can be used in disasters. He argued that mobiles are the most important communications devices. He talked about SMS warnings, RFID tagging of relief supplies, Mesh networks and WiMax in a box used in Hurricane Katrina. One example was using SMS to send funds from Malaysia, the SMH asking for SMS about friends in the disaster, Chinese text messages to reassure about aftershocks to avoid panic, China mobile subscribers sending donations. In the case of recent terrorist attacks the phones on the victims were used to contact relatives.

Madanmohan Rao then talked about the "Wireless Ecosystem". He argued that nations need to ensure that they cultivate the mobile industry. He categorized countries into categories, such as restrictive (Myanmar), to Negotiating (China), to "Mature" (Australia) and "Advanced" (Japan and Korea).

Encik Badlisham Ghazali , CEO of the Malaysian government's Multimedia Development Corporation (MDeC, previously MDC) gave his formal talk (he must be having a busy day at the conferences). He said that the government aimed to move from 15% to 50% broadband penetration by 2010. He pointed out that mobile devices had a role to play. He also said that this opens up a new area for reaching out to the population, for political as well as commercial use.

I was not previously familiar with the MobileMonday organization. Normally, the name would be enough to put me off looking further, but in this case they seem to be an interesting blend of mobile business people and some researchers. There is a Sydney Chapter.

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Saturday, May 17, 2008

World Congress on Information Technology 2008

The World Congress on Information Technology (WCIT 2008) starts here in Kuala Lumpur at the Convention Centre on May 18 to 22, 2008. This is being held at the Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre , which I can see out of my hotel window, near the Petronas Twin Towers. Along with the congress, there is the MobileMonday Global Summit, the United Nations Global Alliance for ICT and Development (UN GAID), and the IKOM Software and Services Showcase 2008 (PS³ 2008) computer exhibition and the PC Fair International 2008.

The PC fair is free and opens10 am Sunday so I thought I would go along. The other events sound a little daunting. I have met Vinton Cerf, when I talked at the 11th Annual Internet Society Conference but have not met Mr. Gates (he is appearing as a hologram). But if someone involved in the event would like me to come along and blog, I would be happy to do so.
There is a three-day congress, a Link Program for business matching that includes a series of structured business-to-business (B2B), business-to-government (B2G) and business-to-industry (B2I) meetings, an ICT exhibition, a debate on current ICT issues and ancillary activities like tours, golf tournament, F1 experience and a spouse program.

WCIT 2008 is jointly organized by the Multimedia Development Corporation (MDeC) and the Association of the Computer and Multimedia Industry of Malaysia (PIKOM), with the support of the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation Malaysia.

WCIT is the flagship event of the World Information Technology and Services Alliance (WITSA), a consortium of 73 international ICT organizations whose members comprise more than 90% of the global IT market.

WCIT 2008 is tipped to be the starting point of many successful collaborations between nations and organizations, made possible only by a congress of such significance.

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Friday, January 04, 2008

Web Accessibility and Mobile Phones

The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) are doing some work on web accessibility and the overlap with mobile phone web page design. This has the delightful acronym of WAMO (Web Accessible Mobile Overlap). W3C's original accessibility guidelines were intended for use with mobile devices as well as for people with a disability. It is a lot easier to convince hard headed clients (and students of web design) to put effort into web design for mobile phone users than for the disabled. I have been teaching this to ANU students for several years and it is good to see W3C picking up on it:
From: [DRAFT] Web Accessibility and Mobile Phones: Making a Web Site Both Accessible for People with Disabilities and for Mobile Devices, W3C, 2008/01/03 23:31:09

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Monday, December 31, 2007

Web Accessibility for the Ageing in Europe

The World Wide Web Consortium have a project on web accessibility for the ageing (WAI-AGE). This is based in France and funded by the European Commission. So far they do not appear to have produced much, but Andrew Arch, who was previously at Vision Australia, has gone over to joint the team, so we might see some results in the next few months.

In terms of teaching web designers about the needs of the elderly, perhaps we need an online equivalent to some of the teaching aids used for physical designers. These consist of goggles to simulate limited vision, thick gloves to give limited hand movement and the like. Perhaps we could have a web service which would blur the text and images of a selected web site, to make them harder to see and reduce the size of the links, to make it harder to select. It might also run the text of the web site through a language translator twice to make it more difficult to understand and simulate intellectual impairments.

The project was planned during 2005 and 2006 and officially started in January 2007.. W3C/ERCIM is the primary partner. The project runs for 36 months and has 5 main objectives for increasing the accessibility of the Web for those with accessibility needs related to ageing within European Union Member States:

  • to inform the development of extensions on WAI guidelines and supplemental educational materials which can better promote and meet the needs of people who have accessibility needs related to ageing, with particular relevance to the needs of the elderly in Europe;
  • to better inform the ongoing work of W3C/WAI with regard to the needs of the elderly, and to create an ongoing dialog between ageing communities and disability communities, and other stakeholder groups on the needs of people who have accessibility needs related to ageing;
  • to provide educational resources focused towards industry implementors, including developers of mainstream technologies, assistive technologies, and Web designers and developers, through reviewing and revising existing WAI educational resources, and developing new educational resources which support the promotion and implementation of Web accessibility solutions for people with accessibility needs due to ageing;
  • to provide educational resources focused towards organizations representing and serving ageing communities, and towards individuals with accessibility needs related to ageing, through reviewing and revising existing WAI educational resources and to develop new educational resources which support promotion and implementation of Web accessibility solutions for people with accessibility needs due to ageing;
  • to promote increased harmonisation of Web accessibility standards so as to further build a unified market for technology developers and expedite the production of Web accessibility solutions, through promoting ongoing dialog between organisations representing the needs of the ageing community, and educating standards organisations and policy makers on commonalities between the needs of people with disabilities and people with accessibility needs due to ageing. ...
From: WAI-AGE Project Reference, W3C, 2007/09/21 10:44:31

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Friday, October 26, 2007

Converting web pages to work on mobile phones

The World Wide Web consortium are doing some useful work on how to get the web on to mobile phones. Ideally content should be designed from the start with this in mind and their W3C Mobile Web Best Practices checker is useful. For converting existing web pages they have just produced a new guide called the: "Content Transformation Landscape":

Mobile Web Best Practices [BestPractices] encourages content providers to produce "made for mobile" experiences of their Web sites. While the number of such Web sites continues to increase, there are still many Web sites that are unaware of mobile presentation. Those Web sites, when accessed from mobile devices, do not present a satisfactory user experience or may indeed cause failure of the user's device. In order to mitigate this unsatisfactory experience, mobile network operators and others use proxies to transform the content of these sites.

At the same time there are an increasing number of highly capable mobile devices that offer enhanced browsing experiences designed to assist users of mobile devices with their typically small screen and limited input capabilities to navigate sites designed with larger displays, pointing devices and full keyboards in mind.

The W3C MWI Best Practices Working Group recognizes that on the one hand transforming proxies can diminish the value of sites that have been designed specifically for mobile presentation. On the other hand transforming proxies can enhance the mobile experience of sites unaware of mobile presentation. Yet again, transforming proxies can diminish the value of such sites when presented on devices that are capable of simulating a desktop experience while mobile. ...

From: Content Transformation Landscape 1.0, W3C Working Draft 25 October 2007

ps: Just for fun here is what the W3C Web Site looks like on a mobile phone.

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Wednesday, August 29, 2007

W3C Australia Standards Symposium

W3C Australia held a one day Standards Symposium in Canberra on 28 August 2007. This is a one day event to look at where web standards are going. These are my informal notes from the event, not official minutes. The symposium was organized with NICTA, with OASIS, OGC and AGIMO also presenting.

World Wide Web Consortium Australia

The World Wide Web Consortium's Australian office (
W3C Aus) is run by CSIRO in Canberra (on the other side of my office wall in the ANU Computer Science and Information Technology Building).

W3C issue what they call "recommendations", but which are really standards, for HTML, XML, CSS and other key web technologies. W3C was founded by Tim Berners-Lee, inventor of the web, in 1994. As with any standards work, there is a rich mix of political, technological and commercial forces at work.

A recent area of tension touched on in the introduction was the schism in the web community between HTML and XHTML. Those working on the next version of HTML (HTML 5) have clearly stated they want to go a different direction from the work on the next XHTML (version 2).

Other tensions are with intellectual property issues with web recommendations. W3C aims to produce technology which can be freely used, without payment of royalties.

W3C wants to expand the web beyond desktop computers, to devices such as mobile phones. That probably is more a matter of commerce, than technology, but the advent of new consumer smart phones may make a differecne.

Typically the W3C process is to first have a "workshop" in an area of interest, then a working groups is formed (if justified) and publishes drafts for comment, implementations are produced to see the technology works, and after several more drafts a recommendation is released. Perhaps more importantly, W3C releases revisions and new versions of recommendations. Implementation guides and web tools are also provided to help with implementation.

As well as the more technical standards for HTML and CSS, W3C also produces guidelines, such as those for web accessibility. There are dozens of working groups working on interrelated recommendations who need to coordinate their work. W3C membership costs money and working group members contribute their time for free.

W3C Australia head, Ross Ackland, claimed the future of the web was to: semantic web, mobile web, and sensor web. He suggested we were in the middle of a ten year adoption of the mobile web, with the semantic web was further in the future and
sensor web was a newly emerging technology CSIRO would like to foster.

The semantic web tries to make a web which machines can understand. Ross argued that Web 2.0 and mashups were a "grass roots" ad-hoc approach to what the semantic web was attempting. My view is that WSeb 2.0 and mashups were providing useful services, while semantic web is a failure which should be abandoned.

The W3C Mobile Web Initiative in 2005 got the attention of the mobile phone industry. But the industry has had several attempts at turning the mobile phone into a viable mobile web device. The industry's attempt with WAP was a failure costing billions of dollars. W3C's own attempt with XHTML Basic, has had limited success. About the only one to be successful was Japan's iMode, which uses a version of HTML which the W3C rejected.

The Sensor Web will provide some standards for sensor access in the future:
The Sensor Web is a type of sensor network or geographic information system (GIS) that is especially well suited for environmental monitoring and control. The term describes a specific type of sensor network: an amorphous network of spatially distributed sensor platforms (pods) that wirelessly communicate with each other. This amorphous architecture is unique since it is both synchronous and router-free, making it distinct from the more typical TCP/IP-like network schemes. The architecture allows every pod to know what is going on with every other pod throughout the Sensor Web at each measurement cycle.

From: Sensor Web, Wikipedia, 21:20, 26 July 2007
CSIRO have a sensor web in Brisbane which can be accessed via web services:

This server contains test deployments of the Open Geospatial Consortium's (OGC) Sensor Web Enablement (SWE) services. ... getCapabilities ... data from the sensors deployed by the Autonomous Systems Laboratory in Brisbane, Australia. The sensor measure temperature, soil moisture and onboard diagnostics at three locations, qcat, belmont and gatton. There are roughly 125 stations with two or three sensors each. This yields over 250 data sources of which about 150 appear to be active. Each source reports every few minutes with data coming in every few seconds. ...

From: CSIRO ICT Centre SWE Web Services, CSIRO ICT Centre, 20 April 2007

Ross ended by asking what Australia could do for web standards. He pointed out that successful standards also needed market adoption. Standards take about five years to develop. The benefits are global. How does Australia contribute? An example is standards for water data standards to help with conservation in Australia and world wide.


OGC develops "specifications" for digital maps. The aim is to be able to knit together different online mapping services to produce a coherent view for the user. OGC works with W3C groups, ISO (ISO 191xx series including ISO 19115 for Metadata) and OASIS (such as Common Alert Protocol (CAP) for emergency messages), IEEE (Sensor Model Language: SensorML).

OGC sponsors scenarios to test implementation of standards (much like the
Coalition Warrior Interoperability Demonstration [CWID] for military IT). OWS 4 in December 2006 worked on sensor web enablement SWE, geo processing workflow GPN and geo-decision support. OWS 5 for 2007 is being planned.

One thing which got my attention was mention of "Social Change On-line".

At question time there was a philosophical discussion of what a standard was, their benefits, disadvantages and processes. This was entertaining but not very enlightening. Perhaps there is a need for some courses on what standards are and how they are created.

Organisation for the Advancement of Structured Information Standards

Organisation for the Advancement of Structured Information Standards (OASIS) was foundered in 1993 for SGML related standards (more recently XML standards). It has more than 60 technical committees. Individuals and organisations can join. A well known OASIS standard is ODF, based on the office document format. OASIS produces horizontal standards (general purpose technology) and vertical standards (for a particular business function). Other standards are
Universal Business Language (UBL) , Customer Information Quality (CIQ) for identifying locations, organisations and people and Common Alert Protocol (CAP) for emergency messages.

Semantic Web

W3C's Semantic Web is about being able to process information. Current work is on an English-like version of the
Web Ontology Language (OWL). This reminds me of the attempt with COBOL to create an English-like computer programming language which could be understood by non technical business people. The result was a verbose language which was still unintelligible to business people and cumbersome for trained computer programmers.

SPARQL is the semantic query language. POWDER the Protocol for Web Description Resources. GRDDL the Gleaning Resources Descriptions and Dialects of Languages.

This was the least useful session of the day. The Semantic Web may well turn out to be very useful one day, but so far all that appears to have been produced are a bewildering array of unintelligible standards. About the only prospect of any of this work ever being of use would be to apply the process Tim Berners-Lea used to create the web, where he took a large and complex standard (SGML) and trimmed it down to the essentials to make HTML.


Chris Body presented about standards in Geoscience Australia. GA seem to have suddenly become more visible, with work on geospatial standards and Tsunami warnings.
The Special Minister of State, Gary Nairn, announced an Australian Spatial Consortium (ASC), on 14 August 2007, but it was not clear to me what this is.

ANZLIC (Spatial Information Council) have provided the ANZLIC Metadata Profile (December 2006) ISO TC211 framework. GeoNetwork is a metadata entry tool endorsed by Australian agencies in August 2007.

Geoscience people have a preference for formal international standards. However, GA is aiming to have any Australian contributions to be available free for public use under a Creative Commons licence.

Australian Government Information Management Office

Brian Stonebridge from AGIMO working on a standards governance framework. Brian argued that standards are boring to end users, there has to be some value to the user to get them interested. Brian's presentation was the most impressive of the day, because he was taking about how the standards could be used for the benefit of the community and he actualled used the technology he was talking about to make the presentation, via AGIMO's GovDex:
GovDex is a resource developed by government agencies to facilitate business process collaboration across policy portfolios (eg. Taxation, Human Services etc.) and administrative jurisdictions i.e. federal, state or local government levels. ...

From: Welcome to GovDex, Australian Government Information Management Office, 2007
Brian mentioned that some of the work is being done online, via the system with the French government.

Brian estimated that development of standards for government use will cost about $2M a year to administer. This is not the development of new technical standards from scratch, but selecting and profiling standards for a particular application (such as selecting e-document formats for an electronic application for building a house).

AGIMO have developed a plugin for enterprise architect for government standards.

AGIMO will use underlying international and national standards, and over this methods and tools, governance and references models. The business case for this is that it will reduce the cost over time.

Unfortunately Brian then lost me in an assortment of acronyms, including:
  • GIEM, Government Information Exchange Methodology (UMM v2.0 and CCTS v2.0). This extends the Canadian GSRM and is similar to the upper layers of AGA.
  • AGOSP: Australian Government Online Services Portal.
Also NICTA launched a three-year research initiative in eGovernment in January 2007, but it is not clear what this is intended to achieve.

Overview of the day

Ross Ackland argued that we were now "moving up the stack": the low level standards for digital communications using the Internet are set and largely working. The web provides an digital publishing overlay for this. Now more semantic content is being added to the web with standards in areas such as Geoscience and more general areas such as the Semantic Web. This is a useful way to think about the work, but the reality I see is not such a clear or systematic path.

Ross asked what should W3C and other bodies do to further standards in Australia. W3C has only a few full memebrs in Australia, due to the small size of the It industry.

I suggested that NICTA, CSIRO and other interested parties could create a one hour presentation explaining how standards development works in Australia. This could be placed on the web and offered to ACS and other IT groups to explain where standards come from and how they could get involved. This may help avoid some of the controversy and confusion surrounding issues such as the proposed adoption of Microsoft's OOXML format as an ISO standard.

One way to look at this which Ross pointed out is that the point of view about the systems are built will change: instead of building an application for an organisation and then try to interface it to other organisations, we will build the interfaces first. From the wiser perspective, I suggested that the web standards effort could be seen as building a global computer system for processing information, much as the Internet is a global system for communicating information.

Some Overall Issues on the Day

* WHERE IS ASIA?: Several speakers talked of how the standards committees were heavily influenced by US government agencies (particularly the military and security) and less so by European organisations. There appears to be little involvement by Asian organisations. There appeared to be a lack of interest in why this is so, the problems it will cause and what to do about it. Australia is culturally close to the USA and Europe and so can ride on the coat tails of the current standards process. However, at some point Asian countries and industries may decide their interests are not being served by the current standards process and decide to set up a new process for standards. Perhaps Australia can play a part in bridging the gap. This could address cultural and geopolitical issues using the web technology itself.

* USING THE STANDARDS: Many groups are producing advanced web standards. Some Internet and web tools are being used by committees. But the output of the standards committees are PDF documents or web pages. It might be useful for the web standards groups to apply some of the technology they are proposing to the standards process itself.

* USING STANDARDS: Perhaps one area in which Australia can contribute is to helping test and implement standards. This will provide useful feedback to the standards developers and also provide potential useful products.

* AUSTRALIAN DEVELOPMENT THROUGH STANDARDS: The most productive part of the day was meeting David Peterson from Boab Interactive . This Australian IT company is the latest member of W3C Australia. They are based in Townsville, North Queensland and doing web work, mostly with tropical environment research projects. Some years ago the AUstralian government funded me to see how to get regional ICT happening.

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Friday, April 13, 2007

Sahana Wins Free Software Foundation Award for Social Benefit

Sahana Team meetup with Sir Tim Berners Lee, inventor of the WWW, at MIT, U.S.A Making money isn't everything, sometimes is good to know you have done good. On the 24 March 2007, the Sahana disaster management system project received the Free Software Foundation's award for Social Benefit. I helped with the user interface, with a version for Indonesia and get a "Notable Mention" on the Sahana Phase II Leadership page, which is nice.

Sahana is up to version 2 and there is work going on to add more mapping functions and mobile features. After a visit by the Sahana team to
Sir Tim Berners Lee (inventor of the Web), the W3C has taken an interest. The W3C might apply its semantic web expertise to disaster management.

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