W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > public-html@w3.org > August 2012

Re: CR exit criteria and features at risk for HTML5

From: Benjamin Hawkes-Lewis <bhawkeslewis@googlemail.com>
Date: Thu, 16 Aug 2012 13:21:08 +0100
Message-ID: <CAEhSh3fgDBE+BGoWM-5nOEXmkm3N-Uu9vX9V2uZt+SGuEkTM5w@mail.gmail.com>
To: Aryeh Gregor <ayg@aryeh.name>
Cc: Maciej Stachowiak <mjs@apple.com>, Boris Zbarsky <bzbarsky@mit.edu>, "public-html@w3.org WG" <public-html@w3.org>
On Thu, Aug 16, 2012 at 12:28 PM, Aryeh Gregor <ayg@aryeh.name> wrote:
> As such, the only value I can see in having an HTML5 REC at all is the
> patent policy.  From a patent-policy perspective, we want to publish
> as much material as possible as REC, as often as possible.

[snip]

> So I think we should get HTML5 to REC as fast as possible for patent
> reasons, and continue using the WHATWG(/WHATCG) HTML draft for actual
> implementation.

Interesting point of view!

Naive question to the floor from a non-lawyer. As I understand it,
contributors to a royalty-free specification give up the right to make
claims that the patents they hold are violated by implementing the
normative requirements of the specification. Presumably if there are
no implementations of a normative requirement that makes it harder to
tell which of their patents might be violated and for contributors to
estimate the cost of giving up their patent rights? Is this one of the
motivations of the "two implementations" requirement? What is the
minimum level of implementation needed to make judgements about likely
patent violation? Could we have a more lightweight process for
royalty-freeing bits or snapshots of spec?

Some other audiences that needs consideration, but aren't mentioned in
your feedback, are authors, people writing guidance for authors, and
other spec writers (EPUB etc.). Information about the interoperable
implementation status of features is critical for that audience. These
audiences likely naively assume that features in RECs should work. If
we push HTML to REC without implementations, I think we need to warn
those audiences that the presence of features in the REC is no
guarantee that they work!

HTML-Next/Living Standard and the linter need to do a better job at
highlighting implementation status. I agree adoption of a common test
format could help provide better information here. Does Mozilla have a
test harness for running the HTML test suite?

--
Benjamin Hawkes-Lewis
Received on Thursday, 16 August 2012 12:21:56 UTC

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