Because of the very nature of EAGLES, which aims at developing consensual and broadly agreed common specifications, a large number of groups active in Europe in the different areas of concern were involved in building on the results of the major European projects to develop preliminary specifications or to establish common ground more precisely. Many of these groups were or are engaged in testing and validating our preliminary proposals or in elaborating further background material intended to provide a basis for additional proposals in a second phase of EAGLES.
From the outset, in EAGLES, there has been a commitment to obtaining feedback (within the time constraints of the project) from the wider community on all proposals agreed on by the group. For this reason, preliminary proposals of the various EAGLES Working Groups were made public at the end of 1994.
In addition to the main objective of disseminating and making available the EAGLES results for wide consultation and application, we remain committed to the purpose of soliciting feedback, comments, suggestions and criticism (negative and positive) on a body of material which represents work that is:
The reader is therefore requested to take particular note of the nature of this body of material and to make due allowance. We certainly do not claim that all the material reaches what is normally thought to be an acceptable level for general publication. Certain material, for example, has been only lightly edited or revised, in our concern to place it before the community in timely fashion for feedback. We are thus very much aware of inconsistencies, repetitions, lack of cross-references, differences in style and presentation, etc. The reader should accord low priority to commenting on such matters.
We are also aware that sometimes different views of some issue are put forward by different working groups (or indeed by different members of one subgroup). We see this as a normal part of the search for consensus. If the reader is able to contribute in part to helping resolve controversial issues, or can provide telling reasons to opt for one proposed preference rather than some other, this would be most welcome.
The reader is thus invited to offer feedback on content-related issues as a first priority. We are keen to hear the reader's views on: