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Review of the Reformatted Recommendations (was Re: New W3C Web Site Launched)

From: Robin Berjon <robin@robineko.com>
Date: Thu, 15 Oct 2009 16:32:34 +0200
Cc: chairs@w3.org, Ian Jacobs <ij@w3.org>, W3C Members <w3c-ac-members@w3.org>
Message-Id: <7222334E-798C-4130-8BC4-F8F49DC1D9CE@robineko.com>
To: Christopher B Ferris <chrisfer@us.ibm.com>, spec-prod@w3.org
Hi all,

in the absence of a list specifically tailored for editors, I'd like  
to suggest that we can move this discussion to spec-prod@w3.org which  
seems to be the closest logical location.

All but a few of the W3C Recommendations listed at:

   http://www.w3.org/TR/tr-status-stds.html

have been reformatted to match the look of the new site. In many cases  
this has broken them with various degrees of severity (in some cases  
rendering them largely unusable). Surely, users can go to the  
previously published version if they happen to need a functional  
document, but it's not something that they're likely to guess (unless  
they read the small note at the bottom of all those documents).

I don't think that I'm being particularly grouchy or demanding if I  
state that running live breaking experiments on documents that are  
expected to be stable and authoritative at their canonical URLs is a  
rather bad situation, that we should work together to address as  
quickly as possible.

I have already heard several people who had reviewed beta.w3.org being  
surprised at the changes made to the Recommendations. It seems rather  
clear to me that this part of the new site has not received anywhere  
near the amount of validation that it ought to have.

So in the spirit of reaching consensus that we are all familiar with,  
and in order to help the Team out as it pushes through this huge  
redesign effort that is in pretty much every other one of its aspects  
absolutely fantastic, to get all the editors past and present who are  
willing to help to discuss ways of addressing the current breakage  
swiftly. I would think that anyone would naturally be welcome to help,  
but I single out editors as they are after all those whose blood and  
tears and paper cuts from a thousand man-hours of last comments build  
these documents and donate them to W3C. They know the kinks and the  
warts, and they've generally had no other option but to listen to  
their users at great length.

Amongst the topics that I would like to see resolved as part of this  
discussion are:

   - Should this experimentation be performed on live Recommendations  
at their canonical URLs?
   - Should old documents be updated at all? If yes, should the WGs in  
charge handle them?
   - Do TRs need to have the site navigation included or are they  
standalone?
   - Is it okay to have the logos of commercial companies on TRs?
   - Should the SotD and paraphernalia be pushed to the end?

And of course any other concern that editors may bring up. Personally,  
I agree that the idea behind most of the changes has merit, but I  
believe that this is being rushed out unbaked, and that the quality of  
our production is taking a hit because of it.

WDYT?

--
Robin Berjon
   robineko  hired gun, higher standards
   http://robineko.com/
Received on Thursday, 15 October 2009 14:33:05 GMT

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