Making Pleasing Music - JTC 1 Directives Harmonization Status
A first definition of “Harmonization” is “to combine things pleasingly”… and that’s what members of the JTC 1 Special Working Group – Directives, including the US Delegations from INCITS’ Procedures Board Committee, have been doing for the past several years.
With the founding of JTC 1 SWG-Directives in 2005, work started on the analysis of differences between the “ISO/IEC Directives Part 1”, which govern technical work in ISO/IEC TCs other than JTC1, and the “JTC 1 Directives”, which govern JTC 1 work. Over the years, the JTC 1 Directives had grown so that it rivaled the ISO/IEC Directives in size and complexity, and there was significant interest to minimize the ways in which JTC 1 operated differently than other ISO/IEC TCs.
Now, some 4 years later, we are at the point of closing on a new “JTC 1 Supplement” which, if approved by the JTC 1 P-Members and the governing bodies in ISO/IEC (the ISO TMB and IEC SMB), would likely become effective in the summer of 2010. Three types of documents are emerging:
a. A “JTC 1 Supplement”, which is similar to the existing ISO and IEC Supplements. This document is used with the base ISO/IEC Directives Part 1 (Seventh Edition, 2009) to indicate ways in which JTC 1 adds to, replaces or amends certain Part 1 sections.
b. Annexes to the JTC 1 Supplement, which refer to sections in the JTC 1 Supplement and hold normative material. These documents are also approved by ISO/IEC TMB/SMB.
c. “JTC 1 Standing Documents” which are approved by JTC 1 and contain both normative and informational material.
The following diagram illustrates the transition of current JTC 1 Directives text into either some direct modification to the ISO/IEC Directives, or to one of the three documents noted above – the practical intent is to use as much of the base ISO/IEC Directives as possible, with a minimal JTC 1 Supplement.
For example, the 188 pages of thecurrent JTC 1 Directives are replaced with 29 pages in the draft JTC 1 Supplement/Annexes (the ISO and IEC Supplements which apply only to their TCs are 84 and 64 pages, respectively). As the editing of the JTC Supplement/ Annexes is still in progress, the draft size will increase but it will still be consistent with the ISO and IEC Supplements.
So what does this have to do with us at INCITS? The most significant change is that our TAGs to JTC 1 Subcommittees (and delegations to Working Groups) will need to fully understand where we will now follow ISO/IEC processes and not variations developed in JTC 1 over the years. Some of the key differences are:
· No more “Final Candidate Draft” ballots, run in SCs, followed by FDIS – we will use the CD-DIS-FDIS sequence followed by other ISO/IEC TCs, with nominal timelines of 3-5-2 months (though it will now be possible to have CD comment periods of 2, 3 or 4 months with approval). DIS and FDIS ballots are managed by the ISO/IEC Central Secretariat, ITTF.
· The development of Corrigenda and Amendments will follow the ISO/IEC processes.
· Both PAS Transposition and Fast-Track Submissions will use a two-stage approval process – DIS and FDIS. While a Ballot Resolution Meeting (with explicit process rules in the JTC 1 Supplement) could be used to deal with comments raised in the DIS vote, the only official votes used to progress the document are the actual DIS and FDIS votes; this is different than the past JTC 1 practice of re-examining NB positions following the BRM).
· Normative References in Fast-Track and PAS Transposition Submissions will need to follow the rules laid out in the ISO/IEC Directives Part 2, even if the first submission of the document does not have to follow the ISO/IEC style guide.
· Other differences will be noted in training materials to be developed, once it is clear that we are on a path to approve the draft materials.
The timeline calls for a 3-month National Body vote on the new documents during November 2009 – January 2010; if needed, there would be a second NB vote starting in February 2010, with submission to ISO/IEC TMB/SMB in April 2010 for final approval. The documents will also be addressed during the upcoming JTC 1 Plenary in October.
As the INCITS Procedures Board Committee will be coordinating development of the US NB position on these JTC 1 Supplement ballots, PBC will provide the draft documents to INCITS TCs for comment. The comment period will likely close at the end of this year so that both PBC and the INCITS Executive Board can form the final US vote in January 2010. TC Chairs may want to consider this timing when scheduling TC meetings during the November-December periods, if they wish to provide comment to PBC.