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Re: <canvas> and the 2D context API (was RE: Begin discussions for pushing Last Call into 2010)

From: Shelley Powers <shelleyp@burningbird.net>
Date: Wed, 12 Aug 2009 19:56:12 -0500
Message-ID: <4A8364AC.8090101@burningbird.net>
To: Sam Ruby <rubys@intertwingly.net>
CC: Adrian Bateman <adrianba@microsoft.com>, Maciej Stachowiak <mjs@apple.com>, David Singer <singer@apple.com>, Dan Connolly <connolly@w3.org>, "public-html@w3.org" <public-html@w3.org>
Sam Ruby wrote:
> Adrian Bateman wrote:
>> On Wednesday, August 12, 2009 4:37 PM, Shelley Powers wrote:
>>> Sam Ruby wrote:
>>>> I will also say that while I truly did not have an idea how the 
>>>> current poll would end up (and even though there does appear to
>>>> be a trend at the moment, I'm still not certain), I do have a
>>>> strong intuition on what the consensus would be on canvas at the
>>>> moment.
>>
>>> The current working group may consider that the current charter can
>>> be stretched to include Canvas, but I'm not sure others outside of
>>> the group would agree. (Though I'm not sure that the working group
>>> of today would necessarily vote the same -- the makeup of the group
>>> is different. Views about the Canvas element are also different. )
>>
>> My understanding is that the WG decision was that canvas was in scope
>> for the working group. The mail documenting the decision [1]
>> indicates that there was some support for the 2D context API being
>> documented separately:
>>
>> We also note support for splitting the immediate mode graphics API 
>> out of the HTML 5 spec and inten to pursue that option by recruiting
>> writing resources. 
>> http://www.w3.org/2002/09/wbs/40318/tactics-gapi-canvas/results#xq3
>>
>> I don't know whether having the <canvas> element defined in the HTML
>> 5 spec but the graphics API in a separate document solves the
>> accessibility issue at the root of this thread. I suspect there is
>> some relationship since a different API would likely require
>> different accessibility support.
>>
>> Nonetheless, I think Microsoft would support that separation since,
>> amongst other things, it would allow the graphics API to proceed in
>> the longer term on a different rhythm to the HTML 5 spec itself.
>
> Now that's a different matter.  I previously was reacting mainly to 
> Shelley's assertion that it is out of scope[2].
>

I don't see how I was unclear. I have been quite upfront about where I 
stand on this issue [1]. The only thing that's changed is others have 
entered the discussion. If others have brought in a new level of 
clarification, great. Speaking of which...

> If we agree that it is in scope, and if the discussion is about 
> whether the existing spec language into one or possibly multiple 
> documents, then that's a decision that hasn't been made yet, and I 
> would hope that anybody who wanted to raise an issue along these lines 
> would do so before Last Call, and ideally would have a discussion, 
> concrete rationale, and possibly even a concrete proposal on how to do 
> this.
>
>> Cheers,
>>
>> Adrian.
>>
>> [1] http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/public-html/2007Dec/0094.html
>
> [2] http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/public-html/2009Aug/0619.html
>


Adrian, thank you, yes, I did mean the API, not the Canvas element 
directly. I don't necessarily agree with Sam that the API is within 
scope of the Charter for this group, but I'm more interested in results 
than mechanisms, and procedures.

If we were to split the API into a separate document, could it progress 
at a different pace than the main HTML 5 specification? Could it also 
have a different editor or set of editors? Not to exclude Ian, but he 
seemed amenable to this being managed separately in the earlier survey:

"The actual 2D graphics context APIs probably should be split out on the 
long term, like many other parts of the spec. On the short term, if 
anyone actually is willing to edit this as a separate spec, there are 
much higher priority items that need splitting out and editing, and I 
would strongly recommend they work on that instead (like setTimeout and 
the Alternative Stylesheets OM). I would be very happy to work closely 
with people on doing such work. The WebAPI working group would also be a 
good forum for such work.

(Note though that even if we take out the 2D graphics context, the 
element still belongs in the HTML spec, as it's part of the language. So 
technically "<canvas>" still would be in the spec; just the graphics 
context API would be taken out. One could argue that that would lead to 
the spec being overly confusing to implementors, who generally prefer 
things in one place to implement them, as it leads to fewer "cracks 
between the specs".)"

Now, I do agree that the Canvas _element_ belongs in the HTML 
specification, but the API should be split out. Doing so would also work 
in well with the ongoing effort to incorporate accessibility.

Shelley

[1] http://realtech.burningbird.net/separating-canvas-new-specification
Received on Thursday, 13 August 2009 00:56:29 UTC

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