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HTML 5 and conformance checkers

From: Karl Dubost <karl@w3.org>
Date: Thu, 14 Jun 2007 10:27:25 +0900
Message-Id: <E87B5752-D991-4722-B889-31D16D9522F0@w3.org>
To: HTML WG <public-html@w3.org>

Hi Ian, Dave,


Comment about HTML 5, Revision 1.90  on Conformance checkers.

         Conformance checkers must verify that a document
         conforms to the applicable conformance criteria
         described in this specification.

How someone defines what is an applicable conformance criteria?
Or the opposite, what is a not applicable conformance criteria?

If such category exists, we should define the list of of what is  
applicable.

         Conformance checkers
         are exempt from detecting errors that require
         interpretation of the author's intent (for example,
         while a document is non-conforming if the content of
         a blockquote element is not a quote, conformance
         checkers do not have to check that blockquote
         elements only contain quoted material).

I understand the spirit of the principle but it is vague. And it  
assume that a conformance checker is always a software with no human  
interaction. It would mean that we should define first what is a  
conformance checker, as a software which proceeds to automatic  
verification of a document. It is done in the Note below. I think the  
criterias should be first class at the top.

"A conformance checker must check for the first two criterias.
1. Criteria that can be expressed in a DTD.
2. Criteria that cannot be expressed by a DTD, but
can still be checked by a machine.
3. Criteria that can only be checked by a human."

Then there is a work to know what we consider being checkable by  
machine or human.


          Conformance checkers must check that the input
         document conforms when scripting is disabled, and
         should also check that the input document conforms
         when scripting is enabled. (This is only a "SHOULD"
         and not a "MUST" requirement because it has been
         proven to be impossible. [HALTINGPROBLEM])

Is the intented purpose of this is to define two levels of Conformance?

          The term "HTML5 validator" can be used to refer to a
         conformance checker that itself conforms to the
         applicable requirements of this specification.

The way it is written here would mean that the piece of software has  
to be written in HTML 5, which doesn't make sense in many cases.

Suggestion: "The term HTML5 validator can be used to refer to a  
software that meets the Conformance Checker requirements of this  
specification."

          XML DTDs cannot express all the conformance
         requirements of this specification. Therefore, a
         validating XML processor and a DTD cannot constitute
         a conformance checker.
         Also, since neither of the two
         authoring formats defined in this specification are
         applications of SGML, a validating SGML system cannot
         constitute a conformance checker either.

          To put it another way, there are three types of
         conformance criteria:

          1. Criteria that can be expressed in a DTD.

          2. Criteria that cannot be expressed by a DTD, but
         can still be checked by a machine.

          3. Criteria that can only be checked by a human.

          A conformance checker must check for the first two.
         A simple DTD-based validator only checks for the
         first class of errors and is therefore not a
         conforming conformance checker according to this
         specification.

                 ]]] -- HTML 5
http://dev.w3.org/cvsweb/~checkout~/html5/spec/Overview.html#conformance
Thu, 14 Jun 2007 00:59:32 GMT


-- 
Karl Dubost - http://www.w3.org/People/karl/
W3C Conformance Manager, QA Activity Lead
   QA Weblog - http://www.w3.org/QA/
      *** Be Strict To Be Cool ***
Received on Thursday, 14 June 2007 01:27:37 UTC

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