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Re: Time for publication?

From: Michael(tm) Smith <mike@w3.org>
Date: Fri, 9 May 2008 15:07:44 +0900
To: Ian Hickson <ian@hixie.ch>
Cc: public-html@w3.org
Message-ID: <20080509060743.GB4327@sideshowbarker>
Ian Hickson <ian@hixie.ch>, 2008-05-08 20:52 +0000:

> It's been a few months since the last time we published a draft, and much 
> has changed in the spec in the meantime. I would like to propose that we 
> publish a copy of the HTML5 working draft.
> 
> There are still thousands of open issues, of course, and we're still 
> nowhere near ready for last call, but publishing regularly shows the W3C 
> membership that we are still actively working.

Yeah. We published the First Public Working Draft on January 22,
and we as a group are under an obligation to try to comply with
the W3C 3-month "heartbeat" requirement:

  http://www.w3.org/2005/10/Process-20051014/groups#three-month-rule
  "...each Working Group SHOULD publish in the W3C technical
  reports index a new draft of each active technical report at
  least once every three months"

That means we should have published something by April 22.

I guess the fact that we missed that deadline is partly (or
mostly) my fault (as the W3C contact for the group) for not
staying on top of it and working to get a new W3C draft of the
HTML5 spec published by that date.

That said, I don't think we should just publish an updated draft
of the spec without also publishing a "changelog" or "release
notes" document that provides high-level descriptions of the
substantive (non-editorial) changes that have been made to spec
since the FPWD.

Also, note that:

  - there's a statement in the W3C process doc that helps clarify
    the context for the heartbeat requirement: "People cannot be
    expected to read several months of a group's mailing list
    archive to understand where the group stands"

  - theres another statement in the document that makes it clear
    what the spirit behind the heartbeat requirement is: that we
    "keep the W3C Membership and public informed of [our] activity
    and progress"

So, noting the above, and given that we are also just a 9 weeks
past the one-year anniversary of the creation of the working
group, it seems like it could be worthwhile to the community for
us to try to publish a general "progress report" that highlights
the progress the group has made during the previous 12+ months,
along with describing the major issues that we have discussed, and
what the current status of those issues is.

But I think that general progress-over-the-last-year report (if we
decide to do it) does not necessarily have to published
simultaneously with the updated draft spec and changelog/
release-notes document.

I believe publishing the updated draft itself and the changes doc
are the higher priority, so I think we should aim to do that first.

I have been following the changes to the spec pretty closely
(e.g., by reading through the commit messages and diffs) since the
time of the FPWD (and even before), and I can start work on
writing the changes doc at the beginning of next week.

If others have time and interest in contributing to work on
putting that changes doc together, I would very much appreciate
the help.

  --Mike

P.S., By way of making lame excuses for why I haven't already
gotten a changes doc written up in the previous month (in time for
the heartbeat deadline): I've taken a good bit of time to prepare
for a couple of events I participate in at this time each year:

  - the WWW 2008 Conference in Beijing, where I did a presentation
    on the HTML5 work

  - XTech 2008, where I did a presentation related to HTML5, as
    well as being the "chair" for some sessions where others did
    presentations related to the HTML5 work and to work on other
    W3C specs (Anne van Kesteren on the "Access Control for
    Cross-Site Requests" spec, Arve Bersvendsen on a proposed spec
    for a "File Upload"/"File I/O" API for browser-based apps, and
    Henri Sivonen on his work developing HTML5 parsing and
    conformance-checking capabilities in his validator.nu tool)

-- 
Michael(tm) Smith
http://people.w3.org/mike/
http://sideshowbarker.net/

Received on Friday, 9 May 2008 06:08:27 GMT

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