[Date Prev][Date Next] [Thread Prev][Thread Next] [Date Index] [Thread Index]

Re: XDG Standard is not evil

On 2 December 2014 at 11:49, Miles Fidelman <mfidelman@meetinghouse.net> wrote:
> Having just waded through this thread,

My sincere sympathies.

> and then reading the standard itself,

Based on what you are quoting - that's the Base Directory
Specification, which is part of the XDG Standards

> I can only conclude that it may not be "evil" but it is a horribly written
> standard.

Lacking in comprehensive detail specifications?

> To start with, there's absolutely no context:

"Base Directory Specification"

> The introduction reads, simply "Various specifications specify files and
> file formats. This specification defines where these files should be looked
> for by defining one or more base directories relative to which files should
> be located."
> Nothing about where the standard applies,
> what kinds of files are being
> talked about,

I believe the very next section entitled "Basics" provides an overview
that covers those items.

> on what kinds of systems.

Any system/application that chooses to adopt it. In terms of OS, it's
used on Linux, Mac (Apple?), and Windows.

> Nothing about what the standard is to be used for.

"a set of common interfaces for desktop environments"


> Nothing about who maintains the standard,

Waldo Bastian, Ryan Lortie, and Lennart Poettering are credited on the
page you referenced, anyone can contribute - simply join the mailing
lists, which is all development is done:-

>  the process by which it is
> maintained and updated,

See above.

> where to find the latest version.

I found them here:-

I don't know where you read your version.

> No references.
> The lack of any of this, makes the rest of it essentially useless.

If you expect a simple guide to the standard to include all of those
points - then you are correct.
Definitely agreed that what you've referenced is lacking in
comprehensive detail, especially the sort I'd expect to see in an ISO
standard. But then Freedesktop.org standards are not formal standards.
And unless you follow the mailing lists, and have followed the history
of X Desktop Group, it's very hard to understand.

"For Linux operating system standards, please see the Linux Standard
Base project. freedesktop.org is loosely affiliated with the Free
Standards Group; the FSG is one group that does "de jure" standards
for free software. The X.Org Foundation and the IETF are other groups
that do *formal* standards."

Unlike these groups, freedesktop.org is just a "collaboration zone"
where ideas and code can be tossed around, and de facto specifications

Perhaps that's a difficulty inherent with a "informal standard"
(informal standards[*1]) built on "concepts"?

Some confusion lies in people confusing xdg-utils[*1] compliance and
the concepts they (the tools) are based (whacky, and unlikely, but it
is possible that some is the result of reaction to anything with
Lennart's name in it).

[*1] see /usr/share/doc/xdg-utils/README

> Miles Fidelman

Kind regards

Reply to: