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RE: IETF RFC format <-> W3C pubrules

From: Leif Halvard Silli <xn--mlform-iua@xn--mlform-iua.no>
Date: Sun, 29 Apr 2012 19:59:51 +0200
To: Larry Masinter <masinter@adobe.com>
Cc: "Tab Atkins Jr." <jackalmage@gmail.com>, Marcos Caceres <w3c@marcosc.com>, Doug Schepers <schepers@w3.org>, "spec-prod@w3.org" <spec-prod@w3.org>
Message-ID: <20120429195951995083.5e8e86f2@xn--mlform-iua.no>
Larry Masinter, Sun, 29 Apr 2012 09:44:07 -0700:
>> The fact that they still produce pure-text documents
>> formatted for printing 80-column wide is either a travesty or a really
>> awesome troll.
> It's more productive to understand the requirements.

The most productive part of Tab's message was "RFCs in HTML and utf-8, 
properly linked up and anchored" ...

> Email: IETF standards are developed in email, but email archives 
> commonly used throughout IETF (and W3C) are remarkably poor at 
> dealing with HTML, or discard the HTML and present an ugly attempt to 
> translate to ASCII text. It's not clear how to do better; there is no 
> suitable and implemented HTML profile defined as suitable for email 
> archives.

I find W3's online, HTML versions of their mailing lists better than 
that of the RFC-Editor.org. It handles Unicode well too. It can even be 
improved. It is not such an unsolvable problem.

> It's possible to for anyone to type an author's name into a search 
> engine -- allowing arbitrary Unicode might open you up to having to 
> deal with people who say their name is (╯°□°)╯︵ɹſsuıʞʇ∀qɐ┴.  (If I 
> look at https://twitter.com/#!/tabatkins in my default browser, I get 
> 3 squares [] in one place, five in another, and one in another; the 
> characters are not uniformly available in the three fonts I see.)   

Would it not be possible, in the RFC format, to start with a allowing a 
subset (that covers more than than US-ASCII ...) of UNICODE?

> RFCs are generally accessible.   Producing accessible HTML requires 
> additional considerations not obvious to the typical internet-draft 
> author.  And what do screen readers do with (╯°□°)╯︵ɹſsuıʞʇ∀qɐ┴? 

One accessibility issue is being able to ignore things. An RFC contains 
lots of repetitive text - especially at the start. It makes it tedious 
to start to understand. With links and anchors and CSS, one could start 
to hide things - or at least allow users to have "landmark links" that 
allow them to jump to the relevant place. E.g. for the words SHOULD, 
MUST etc, one could have a link to their definition.
Leif H Silli
Received on Sunday, 29 April 2012 18:00:28 UTC

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