Standards are concerned with ensuring that technology (including data) from one supplier will work and operate as it was meant to with technology from another supplier. Standards are expensive with respect to both financial and human capital. When developing standards, the leading experts in a field must be donated by their employers to the process, and in addition, those employers must put up the cash to transport those people to meetings, organize conferences, etc. As standards in general have become more important, the costs and, more importantly, the return on investment of the standards process have come under more intense scrutiny. In addition, understanding standards brings a cost. A developer has to understand what the standard implies — even when the specification is crystal clear, it requires interpretation, which may not be documented in the public documentation of the standards body. This usually means that even if you are only a user, not a developer, you have to send someone to the meeting of the standards body and follow the mailing lists. Another frequent misconception is that using a standard is a solution to a technical problem. Regardless of how it has been developed, standards are the result of compromise in committees. Standards are a solution to a market problem — enabling companies to agree on a common solution, which widens the market and simplifies the sales and purchasing of products.