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Re: CIF-JSON draft standard

John B asks what the significance of COMCIFS approval would be.  I have perhaps used the word "approval" rather loosely. By "approval" what I mean is that (1) COMCIFS endorses the standard and (2) COMCIFS agrees to become the custodian of standard, that is, to ensure that it is published, developed and maintained. 

A communications standard depends on widespread adoption to be effective. Having a long-term, credible custodian of a standard is important in encouraging adoption, as developers are less inclined to write code for something that is seen as ad-hoc, poorly managed or likely to disappear.

Note that I would be expecting COMCIFS to delegate CIF-JSON development and maintenance responsibilities back to the cif-developers group.

An alternative to full adoption by COMCIFS could be links (or full contents) on IUCr webpages and inclusion in Vol G, with appropriate disclaimers if this seems too much like endorsement.

This topic also touches on the questions around what the relationship of COMCIFS should be to work on the periphery of IUCr concerns, e.g. spectroscopy ontologies.


On 24 May 2017 at 23:06, Bollinger, John C <John.Bollinger@stjude.org> wrote:

Dear James and Colleages,


I am satisfied with the current CIF-JSON draft, but I am uncertain what the significance of COMCIFS’s approval would be.  Why are we considering this step?







John C. Bollinger, Ph.D.

Computing and X-Ray Scientist

Department of Structural Biology

St. Jude Children's Research Hospital


(901) 595-3166 [office]





From: comcifs [mailto:comcifs-bounces@iucr.org] On Behalf Of James Hester
Sent: Tuesday, May 23, 2017 8:21 PM
To: Discussion list of the IUCr Committee for the Maintenance of the CIF Standard (COMCIFS) <comcifs@iucr.org>
Subject: CIF-JSON draft standard



The cif-developers mailing list has developed a standard for expressing CIF information in JSON form.  The resulting draft is available at https://comcifs.github.io/cif-json .


The discussions around the development of this standard are available in the cif-developers archive: http://www.iucr.org/iucr-top/lists/cif-developers/

If no substantial issues are raised here in the next 6 weeks, this standard will be considered to have been approved by COMCIFS.  Any substantial change to the standard will be routed through the cif-developers list (which anybody may join) before being returned here for final approval.  I propose that the approval period is reduced to 3 weeks for any subsequent drafts.


James Hester (chair)



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