Some Standards Context


It’s no secret that logistics are what drives the global economy. By logistics, I mean goods traveling from Point A to Point B cheaply and quickly.

The first shipping container that went from a truck, to a ship, and back to a train/truck at the destination port was in 1956.

This spawned a huge industry. There were dozens of different containers in the US and they were all incompatible with each other. Towards the end of the 1960’s, standardization discussions took place and the first ISO spec for a standardized shipping container (Isotainer) were ready for publication in 1970.

There’s a good article on the ISO’s website about the Isotainer [pdf]

It’s been over 30 years – yet there are still people who refuse to conform to the standard. The Isotainer has a 90% adoption rate, and it took a hell of a long time to get.

So, when I see ranting and raving about Web Standards and specifications, I just think to myself it will all get better in due time. We’re working in a very young industry.


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