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RE: ACTION-95, ISSUE-65: Plan to publish a new WD of HTML-5

From: Larry Masinter <masinter@adobe.com>
Date: Tue, 27 Jan 2009 16:27:19 -0800
To: Maciej Stachowiak <mjs@apple.com>, Sam Ruby <rubys@intertwingly.net>
CC: HTML WG <public-html@w3.org>
Message-ID: <8B62A039C620904E92F1233570534C9B0118C84730DA@nambx04.corp.adobe.com>

" ... publishing another WD is not as big a deal... "
In general, an updated WD should have *more* consensus and agreement than its predecessors, including its original FPWD.
Otherwise you're going the wrong way.

The "heartbeat requirement" isn't some silly rule invented by process wonks to be run around as a technicality. It's a sincere attempt to judge whether the working group members are willing to actually work on technical issues, or would rather spend their time posturing about administrative issues which have no substance.  If you get hung up in process: no heartbeat, no progress.

The technical issue here, the serious technical issue, is whether it is actually possible to independently define HTML as a markup *language* with a semantics that are independent of the operational processing rules defined in the current document.  Can that independent language be read, written, interpreted, without making reference to somebody's really cool open source implementation of a parser that everybody just has to use. Can it be mapped to other processing methods, compact XML, XML databases, and other elements that the non-browser part of the web community actually care about? 

There's no easy way to judge that by wading through the current specification and picking out the parts that would maybe apply to a language definition, you actually need to try to write the language specification and evaluate it for compatibility both with the parsing rules as well as with the browser specification. Mike's done a valiant job of trying to draft such a language specification, and I think it would be a damned good idea to let the community actually evaluate that.

Larry
--
http://larry.masinter.net
Received on Wednesday, 28 January 2009 00:28:02 GMT

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