Standards: The Waterfall at Work
While mainstream development has fallen for the myth of test-driven development, standards bodies have successfully seen through the lie and stayed on the path of a waterfall-style, specify-standardize-implement process.
Radical thoughts, such as test-first standard development, are misguided as they delay the time for the piece of paper that constitutes the standard to be out the door. For most standards bodies, a timely "1.0" specification is the most important artifact, and implementations are just, well, implementation details.
Furthermore, the special bodies set up to deal with the resulting interoperablity problems, especially the WS-I institute, and show that these bodies do a valuable service for the careers of the participants and the brand awareness of the funding institutions.
About the Author
Steve Loughran is the co-author of Java Development with Ant and through his work with the Apache Ant development team is leading the effort to produce six standard build targets that can be used on all projects worldwide.