W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > public-webapi@w3.org > June 2008

Re: Geolocation ideas

From: Charles McCathieNevile <chaals@opera.com>
Date: Thu, 05 Jun 2008 17:21:14 +0200
To: "Ian Hickson" <ian@hixie.ch>
Cc: public-webapi@w3.org, "public-appformats@w3.org" <public-appformats@w3.org>
Message-ID: <op.ub8q5xehwxe0ny@widsith.local>

Cc+ appformats, since it seems that we will be merged with them soon and  
they should get a chance to comment too (although there is a large overlap  
I don't think it is 100%).

On Tue, 03 Jun 2008 17:33:53 -0300, Ian Hickson <ian@hixie.ch> wrote:

> Hey Chaals,
> Could you please confirm that it is acceptable for us to begin
> unofficially discussing geolocation API requirements on the
> public-webapi@w3.org mailing list and for us to start noodling on ideas  
> in CVS in the http://dev.w3.org/cvsweb/2006/webapi/ directory? We would
> like to start today.

I cannot stop you doing it. On the other hand, given that there is an  
existing mailing list and that you have been explicitly asked to use it  
for the topic it was set up for, it seems a bit small-minded not to do so.  
Is there any obvious reason for continuing the discussion here that has  
escaped my attention? I am concerned about the effect one can observe in  
HTML, where effective transparency is destroyed by the fact that there are  
an large set of different discussion fora one needs to track in order to  
discover where relevant information is, making it very difficult to  
determine what is being proposed, let aone decided, unless one works  
full-time on HTML. I don't see that as conducive to good, informed open  

I would therefore request that you keep discussion on this topic to the  
mailing list designed to gather it in one place.

> If yes, then could you maybe please also confirm that the working group
> will adopt geolocation APIs as a working group work item, at least until
> the W3C has decided whether to create a new working group for this? As  
> far as I can tell no working group members has expressed their dissent
> and several have expressed their agreement since I first mentioned this
> last week, which puts us ahead of most of our working group decisions!
> :-)

It would appear that someone is sitting on some kind of IPR/patent block  
that has been commnicated to hte team in confidence. So there is nnot much  
we can do to figure out who or what except look at the ongoing  
communication and see if something stands out enough to start making  
speculative guesses.

Unfortunately, this is not easy to work with. Formally taking on the work  
item in this group within this context seems like a bad idea - the patent  
policy is there for a reason and we don't do ourselves a lot of favours by  
pretending that the world is nicer than it is.

Like you, I am upset that W3C has decided to split this off somewhere  
else, and that in the best case we will have to wait weeks to do anything  
formal (and for possible worst cases we can consider the 6 months it took  
to propose a charter we had pretty much agreed on as a strawman, or the  
years that some W3C activities have gone without charters :( ). However,  
unless there is no sign of progress in W3C (and at the moment they are  
showing signs of progress, if not actual measurable reaching of the  
various milestones for a new group) I propose to defer the question,  
rather than try to take on a new formal deliverable. If there is no  
apparent movement in the time between now and our face to face meeting,  
that may be time to take it up again. In the meantime why not give the W3C  
Team a little credit for acting in good faith, and the time to do their  
work at a reasonable rate?

Since the webspace at dev.w3.org/2006/webapi is just a set of addresses  
for convenience, and since we are discussing something that is clearly  
some kind of WebAPI, unless there is some process reason I don't know of  
or you do something blatantly stupid like trying to make a document look  
like it has more W3C support than it does through inappropriate use of  
stylesheets, missing or misleading status statements and so on, I don't  
see that it is impossible to put a proposal for a spec into that space.  
Indeed, there is no reason I can see that a geolocation group could not  
continue using a chunk of that space, given that there is trust between  
the members of the two groups not to step on each other's work.

> I understand that you are travelling; my apologies for making this
> request when you are indisposed.

Well, the reply gets out according to the vagaries of net access and my  
time, which is the same rule that always applies. You just picked the  
moment I finished work and went to celebrate my birthday as the time to  
send mail, which was perhaps an unluckily sub-optimal choice.



Charles McCathieNevile  Opera Software, Standards Group
     je parle français -- hablo español -- jeg lærer norsk
http://my.opera.com/chaals   Try Opera 9.5: http://snapshot.opera.com
Received on Thursday, 5 June 2008 15:21:59 UTC

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