Data Communications Standard (DCS)

Data Communications Standard Committee, chaired by Stephen Shanbaum of Ocuco Inc.


  1. DCS Q&A

    For topics that lend themselves to the question and answer format.  Please read the posting guidelines before submitting your question.  If you're not sure, please use the discussion area and a moderator will move the topic if appropriate.

    What types of questions should I avoid asking?

    First, make sure that your question is on topic for the area in which you are posting. Do not post questions for the LPDS committee in the DCS area for example.

    You should only ask practical, answerable questions based on actual problems that you face. Chatty, open-ended questions diminish the usefulness of the site and push other questions off the front page.

    Your questions should be reasonably scoped. If you can imagine an entire book that answers your question, you’re asking too much.

    If your motivation for asking the question is “I would like to participate in a discussion about ______”, then you should be using the Discussion area instead of the Q&A area. However, if your motivation is “I would like others to explain ______ to me”, then you are probably OK. Just remember that at some point a single answer needs to be selected as "best". If your question doesn't lend itself to having one answer it's probably a discussion.

    To prevent your question from being moved to discussion, avoid asking subjective questions where …

    • every answer is equally valid: “What’s your favorite ______?”
    • your answer is provided along with the question, and you expect more answers: “I use ______ for ______, what do you use?”
    • there is no actual problem to be solved: “I’m curious if other people feel like I do.”
    • you are asking an open-ended, hypothetical question: “What if ______ happened?”
    • your question is just a rant in disguise: “______ sucks, am I right?”

    Some subjective questions are allowed, but “subjective” does not mean “anything goes”. All subjective questions are expected to be constructive. What does that mean? Constructive subjective questions:

    • inspire answers that explain “why” and “how”
    • tend to have long, not short, answers
    • have a constructive, fair, and impartial tone
    • invite sharing experiences over opinions
    • insist that opinion be backed up with facts and references
    • are more than just mindless social fun

    For more further reading, see Stack Exchange's guidelines for great subjective questions and blog post about how real questions have answers.

    If your question is about the site itself, please don't ask it here. Instead E-mail your questions directly to, where you can ask about things like what questions are appropriate, what tags should be used, suggest a feature, point out a bug, or generally discuss how this site works.

    (The above section was adapted from Stack Exchange's posting rules)

  2. DCS Discussion

    For topics that lend themselves to more prolonged discussion.