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Brief mtg. summary

From: Jim Whitehead <ejw@kleber.ICS.UCI.EDU>
Date: Fri, 20 Sep 1996 09:06:53 -0700
To: w3c-dist-auth@w3.org
Message-ID: <9609200906.aa19011@paris.ics.uci.edu>

This is just a brief summary of the Informal Technical Meeting on WWW
Distributed Authoring and Versioning, held September 16, 1996, at the
MIT Faculty Club.

More detailed minutes will be prepared, however, they will likely not
be available until early October.  Information about the meeting can be
found at:

http://www.ics.uci.edu/~ejw/authoring/cambridge/

There were 18 attendees at this meeting, a complete list of which can
be found at
http://www.ics.uci.edu/~ejw/authoring/cambridge/Participants.html.
These attendees were members of companies which make general purpose
application software, document management systems, configuration
management systems, distributed authoring tools, and networking
software, along with researchers in hypertext versioning, and many
participants from the World Wide Web Consortium.

The meeting was very productive.  The main accomplishments of the
meeting were:

  - reaching rough consensus on the draft distributed authoring
    requirements
  - reaching rough consensus on the draft versioning requirements
  - an understanding of the language and terminology being used

Additionally, there was much discussion of various approaches for
addressing these requirements.  There was some discussion on the 
draft charter for the working group, which generated some good
feedback.

The meeting produced several action items:

1. Modify the distributed authoring requirements, "Requirements
   on HTTP for Distributed Content Editing," based on comments
   received at the meeting.  Assigned: Jim Whitehead, due: 9/20/96

2. Revise the versioning requirements, "Functional Requirements and
   Framework for Versioning on the WWW," based on feedback received
   at the meeting.  Assigned: David Durand, due 9/27/96.

3. Revise the draft charter based on feedback received at the meeting,
   and also from the mailing list.  Assigned: Jim Whitehead, due: 9/20/96

4. Submit a draft distributed authoring and versioning scenarios
   document to the mailing list for review.  Assigned: Ora Lasilla,
   due: 9/20/96

Additionally, several documents were promised by meeting participants:

- A draft protocol specification for distributed authoring and verisoning
  capability, Yaron Goland, by 9/20/96

- A document listing scenarios which result in server-to-server 
  communication, Stephen Carter, week of 9/23-9/27/96.

We also revisited action items from the San Mateo meeting:

- Create a task-oriented list of scenarios which interoperable
  distributed authoring tools should be able to perform. Keith Dawson,
  Atria, is the editor of this document.

Due to other commitments, Keith is unable to edit this document. Ora
Lasilla has graciously agreed to become the editor of the scenarios
document, and will be producing a draft shortly.

- Create a list which collates the "key functionality" among
  AOLpress/AOLserver, FrontPage, Word, as well as other distributed
  authoring tools. Dave Long, America Online, is the editor of this
  document.

The general sentiment is that while this document would still be
useful to produce, its main purpose was to motivate the generation
of requirements, which has already occurred without having this
information.  Dave Long is still willing to accept contributions
and edit them.  However, this activity is currently low priority.

- Criteria for completion of the group's work were discussed, and need
  to be clearly described in writing.

I have submitted a draft read/write interoperability definition to the
working group.  This document still requires revision, and feedback.
Read/write interoperability is only one aspect of this group's work,
and more effort needs to go into defining exit criteria.

- The working group was tentatively interested in seeking sponsorship
  by the W3C. However,before the group is officially sponsored, members
  needs to know the intellectual property rights implications of such
  sponsorship.

The working group is still interested in pursuing W3C sponsorship, due
to the perception that it can move more rapidly in standards development.
The issue of intellectual property rights has still not been addressed,
beyond a general sentiment that the results of the working group should
be open, and non-proprietary.

- There should be a reinvestigation of work previously performed by
  Murray Maloney on standard LINK REL and REV tags.

While there is still some disagreement on whether this group should 
attempt to define some standard link types, with the dominant opinion
holding that this group should not, this document is still of interest
to our discussions.  Originally issued as an internet-draft, it has
currently expired.  I have made it available from the working group
page, and at URL:

http://www.ics.uci.edu/~ejw/authoring/draft-ietf-html-relrev-00.txt

- There should be an investigation by the versioning and configuration
  management group into the utility of entity tags (etags) for
  performing versioning.

As a result of this action item, there was some discussion on the
mailing list about use of entity tags.  However, there is still a real
need to collect this information about entity tags into one
definitive, "use of entity tags in versioning" document, which
lists their uses and limitations.  Any takers?  I asked for
volunteers at the meeting, but there were no takers.  However,
there was some interest in having another thread on the issue.
Would someone like to start?

- Jim Whitehead <ejw@ics.uci.edu>
Received on Friday, 20 September 1996 12:21:03 GMT

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