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Re: Orphaned annotations

From: Jim Ley <jim@jibbering.com>
Date: Mon, 18 Mar 2002 14:41:39 -0000
Message-ID: <036601c1ce8b$03ae11c0$ca969dc3@emedia.co.uk>
To: <www-annotation@w3.org>
"Marja-Riitta Koivunen" <marja@w3.org>
> At 01:37 AM 3/18/2002 +0000, Nick Kew wrote:
>
> >As soon as I had a working prototype, it became abundantly clear that
> >there is a deep and fundamental flaw in Annotea: we construct long
> >and detailed pseudo-xpointers, but these become totally useless as
> >soon as a page is updated.  And annotea has no mechanism for dealing
> >with this, nor indeed even to detect that a page has changed.
>
> First, the amount of problems depends on what kinds of changes are made
to
> the page and how well id's are used.

id's simply aren't used though, for example one might expect
http://www.w3.org/2001/Annotea to be authored with a nod towards making
Annotation easy, yet

#xpointer(/html[1]/body[1]/table[1]/tbody[1]/tr[1]/td[2]/h1[1])
or
#xpointer(start-point(string-range(/html[1]/body[1]/table[1]/tbody[1]/tr[
1]/td[2]/ul[1]/li[3],"",23,1))/range-to(end-point(string-range(/html[1]/b
ody[1]/table[1]/tbody[1]/tr[1]/td[2]/ul[1]/li[3],"",40,1))))
(which considering it's trying to point to an A element shows a pretty
dodgy creation interface IMO.)

are a couple that the page has, id's aren't well used on the general web
(generally only in connection with javascript and the few people who
duplicate name/id in their anchors.)   and the kind of fuzzy pointers
we're getting on even very simple documents such as the one above
illustrate how easily they can be moved within the document.

Again on the Annotea front page we have Jose Kahan saying "Great work
Art!" and pointing to
#xpointer(/html[1]/body[1]/table[1]/tbody[1]/tr[1]/td[2]/p[10])
which today points to "Others are strongly encouraged to start their own
Annotea servers."
yet http://web.archive.org/web/20010703011339/www.w3.org/2001/Annotea/
which whilst not being from the right date (it's as close as
web.archive.org has.) it does point to a paragraph discussing Art
Barstow's javascript bookmarklet approach.

I think it's clear fuzzy pointers without a mechanism to know how
reliable the fuzzy pointer is can't realistically be used.

Jim.
Received on Monday, 18 March 2002 09:44:14 GMT

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