I'll give a quick overview now. I'm in the process of putting together an article on the subject for APUG.
I use the technique to take advantage of Rodinal's compensating effect, an advantage when film is exposed under contrasty lighting. So far I've limited my experiments to nighttime under a full moon - mostly successful - and still lifes under artificial light - mostly unsuccessful.
The theory behind a compensating effect is that the developer's action becomes exhausted most quickly in the densest areas of a negative - the highlights - while the thinnest, shadow areas continue to come up.
As you can imagine this is a pretty good trick for really difficult exposure situations. Usually we agree that either shadow detail was placed there by exposure or it won't be there at all. I don't believe that stand development creates something from nothing. But it helps minimize blocked up highlights while allowing the shadow detail that was recorded to fully develop.
There are probably better compensating developers. I can't swear to it but Microphen certainly shows an unmistakable compensating effect for me in my push processing adventures. And Diafine is well known for highlight control
The difference is in the dilution. Microphen is great stuff as straight stock solution. For me, tho', it becomes grainy and less palatable when diluted. And while I like Diafine with Tri-X, it imposes its own peculiar tonal qualities.
Rodinal and Tri-X have a classic look. And dilute Rodinal, within reasonable limits, doesn't lose that quality. At 1:25, 1:50, 1:100 and 1:200, when used with Tri-X it all looks pretty much the same to me. There aren't many developers that retain their inherent characteristics despite dilution. D-76/ID-11 certainly doesn't; the same is true of any developer relying on sodium sulfite.
So far my best results come from exposing Tri-X at EI 100 under full or nearly full moonlight (not of the moon but of objects illuminated by moonlight) followed by stand development in 1:200 Rodinal for about two hours. I agitate gently and continuously for the first minute - that's all. Wait, then finish normally with stop bath (actually, I prefer a plain water rinse) and fixer.
I've also experimented with stand development for a shorter duration in a blend of Rodinal and Xtol but that's a whole 'nuther sack o' taters. All the tonality of Rodinal with the fine grain of Xtol - in other words, pretty much like Tri-X in D-76/ID-11 used normally. ;>
Clear as mud? Well, I'll admit, it's mostly voodoo. I'm hoping to be able to defend my position more ably once I've finished research for an article.
BTW, I've uploaded an example (my favorite prop, a goat skull) showing Tri-X stand developed in dilute Rodinal. It's in the Critique section and my personal gallery.
Well...that wasn't a very quick overview. Imagine what the article will be like.