Open World

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One of the 10 characterists of Open Standards as defined by Ken Krechmer.


"Open World is the principle of a single world-wide standard for a single purpose. This right is supported by the WTO to prevent technical barriers to trade. Politically this is a very contentious area. There are national standards for food processing that are based on religious beliefs (e.g., halal and kosher). There are standards for the environment, health, medical care, and social welfare that create an imbalance in cost between countries that implement them (richer) and countries that don?t (poorer). To avoid these contentious issues, most formal SSOs currently support, but do not require, coordination of their standards work with world-wide standards. This allows, but does not favor, divergent regional or national standards.

In the richer countries, the rise of consortia, the decline of publicly funded research, aggressive commercialism and weak SSO management make it more difficult to achieve a single standard for a single function world-wide. The five different incompatible versions of the 3G cellular standards are an example of these effects. Initially these five 3G versions will operate in different geographic areas, but eventually users will demand world-wide compatibility. It appears likely that standardization organizations will continue to proliferate and create incompatible standards for similar capabilities. This may be viewed as an indication of standardization disaster, or as an indication of the need to increase support of Open Interfaces." (