Re: ERB work on 3.* (Linking Elements)

[crossposted to xml-dev in error]

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> Reply-To: Peter@ursus.demon.co.uk (Peter Murray-Rust)
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> Tim,
> 	I'd like you and the ERB to know how much I appreciate the work 
> the ERB is doing, and also that I think it's a very effective process.  
> Personally I'm happy to work with whatever comes out - I trust the ERB to 
> come out with the most workable solution that the associated brainpower 
> and experience can muster.  [I think it's a credit that on xml-dev (which
> is discussing how to implement PhaseI) no-one so far has suggested that 
> the spec got things wrong, or is ambiguously worded, or otherwise 
> unimplementable.]
> In message <> Tim Bray writes:
> > The ERB has now put two meetings work in on this set of issues and is 
> > nowhere near done.  Not surprising, given the importance of the issues.
> > One of the factors holding us back a bit has been the fact that the
> > discussion in the WG on the 3.* issues has been lacking in both volume
> > and depth.  Reasons for this might be (a) that the WG is tired (the
> > ERB is), (b) that the WG is busy on other things, and (c) that the WG
> > has substantially less experience in these issues than in those that
> > came up in the XML language discussion.
> I cannot answer for anyone else, but I am (c).  [I think it's also
> going to be  a problem in PhaseIII.]  I shall (I hope) have something to
> say about addressing in PhaseII (I assume that's still to come).
> >From my own perspective as a web hacker, I can probably hack solutions to most
> of the proposals so far, so what matters is whether:
> 	(a) people outside the WG, outside SGML, will understand the result.
> 	(b) any decision is more constraining than any other.
> At present I am implementing the simplest approaches (HREF-like and IMG-like)
> in JUMBO and can probably manage your next lot (with a struggle, and not 
> very efficiently, but that's not the point).  As long as the rules are
> clear, whether we have link information in attributes, GIs, contents or the
> whole lot is probably manageable.  It's more a question of whether confusion
> will result.
> [...]
> As I mentioned on xml-dev I was talking to an important organisation in our
> community who were very keen on XML, but 'hoped [the ERB/EG] didn't make it 
> too complicated'.  In a sense, therefore, there are already two levels of 
> indirection - people like me have to understand it and then carry the message
> to a wider community.  If _they_ in term have to educate staff, the system
> needs to be fairly self-explanatory.  Where possible, therefore, I will
> cast a meta-vote in favour of the 'most obviously understandable solution
> (without prior SGML/HyTime knowledge)'.  
> To this end, any short example documents illustrating your conclusions so 
> far would be extremely valuable.  Essentially: 'This is what we are 
> suggesting: can you (a) understand what it is meant to do? (b) think it
> can be implemented? (c) do everything that you want to do? (even if some
> solutions creak a bit).'  We could then try to feed back on these (more 
> concrete) documents.
> 	P.

Peter Murray-Rust, domestic net connection
Virtual School of Molecular Sciences