Bob Hinden wrote:
Proprietary is a commonly used term to describe something that
not have a full, complete, and open specification -- which is the
current state of IS-IS. Now folks (including me) are trying to fix
that issue by publishing sundry non-standard RFCs on how the as-deployed
IS-IS really works (which effort is to be applauded). But the
remains that *today* the as-deployed IS-IS and the documented IS-IS
aren't the same. I wish they were.
I am glad to hear this activity is going on.
Regarding your definition of "proprietary". From Merriam-Webster
Online at http://www.m-w.com/ :
Main Entry: 1pro·pri·e·tary
Inflected Form(s): plural -tar·ies
Date: 15th century
1 : one that possesses, owns, or holds exclusive right to something;
specifically : PROPRIETOR 1
2 : something that is used, produced, or marketed under exclusive legal
right of the inventor or maker; specifically : a drug (as a patent
medicine) that is protected by secrecy, patent, or copyright against
free competition as to name, product, composition, or process of
3 : a business secretly owned by and run as a cover for an intelligence
This matches my view that proprietary has more to do with ownership than
the availability of open specifications. A protocol can have open
specifications, but still be proprietary. For example prior to Sun
Microsystems giving change control of NFS and RPC to the IETF, NFS and
RPC had open specifications (and there were independent inter-operable
implementations), but were still proprietary.
"open" is ambiguous:
(A) visible, i.e., documented (PDF and PS qualify)
(B) able to be modified (PDF and PS do not qualify)
E.g., Adobe's PDF and PostScript are both (A) but not (B).
"proprietary" can (as per definition above) apply to either, and thus
cannot be used to exclusively denote case (A).