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Re: [HDP] Response to Review of HTML Design Principles Questionnaire

From: Marghanita da Cruz <marghanita@ramin.com.au>
Date: Thu, 23 Aug 2007 16:30:27 +1000
Message-ID: <46CD2983.8030004@ramin.com.au>
To: public-html@w3.org

Sander Tekelenburg wrote:
> At 04:22 +0200 UTC, on 2007-08-23, Leif Halvard Silli wrote:
>> 2007-08-22 16:57:30 +0200 Lachlan Hunt:
>>> 2. Support Existing Content
>>> This principle is essential. [...]
>>> It really doesn't matter whether a particular feature was defined in HTML4,
>>> XHTML1 or not defined at all [...]  If there is significant existing content
>>> on the web that relies on particular user agent behaviour, then that
>>> behaviour should be specified [...]
>> Take note, Laura and others: According to this interpretation, many of
>> those you that have sofar voted strongly for this principle, are probably
>> actually against it!
> FWIW, I don't know if it's useful to be for or against a Design Principle
> based upon someone's interpretation of it. I realise it's confusing, because
> many have 'explained' Desing Principles by giving some interpretation, but
> that's only that interpretation. It doesn't mean the Design Principle cannot
> be interpreted differently. The questionaire asks us for our opinion of the
> Design Principles, not for our opinion of some interpretation of the Design
> Principles.
> I for one do agree with this Design Principle. I interpret it as saying that
> we should do our best to not change HTML such that current websites stop
> working in HTML5 UAs (which would result in users sticking with old UAs
> instead of upgrade), or that it would become so difficult for authors to
> upgrade their sites to HTML5 that they won't bother -- which would result in
> them not making use of the good things HTML5 has to offer and we want them to
> use.
> But again, that's just my interpretation :)
> It seems to be a general problem with the Design Principles: they can be
> interpreted in many ways, and they can all be overruled by each other. I
> wonder how useful they can really be, but I see no problem with such Design
> Principles[*]. While filling out the questionaire, I realised that I mostly
> have problems with the ones that *do* limit room for interpretation. Ain't
> that something....
It appears to me, that there are too many principles and they could be collapsed
into 4.

My suggestion is to modify the document to include a new section or expand the
Introduction to cover Background/History of the design principles & Audience for
the specifiction (including priority of constituencies)


1 Support Existing Content (encompasses degrade gracefully)

2 Well Defined Behaviour (encompasses media independence, avoid complexity,
handle errors)

3 Evolution not Revolution
(encompass Do not Reinvent the Wheel, Pave the Cowpaths, Solve Real Problems)

4 Separation of Concerns
(encompasses support for world languages, media independence and universal access)

New Section providing examples of Examples of Application of Principles

Marghanita da Cruz
Phone: (+61)0414 869202
Received on Thursday, 23 August 2007 06:34:41 UTC

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