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Re: Ways forward for: Documents not in scope for HTML-WG

From: Maciej Stachowiak <mjs@apple.com>
Date: Fri, 05 Feb 2010 22:05:31 -0800
Cc: Sam Ruby <rubys@intertwingly.net>, Larry Masinter <masinter@adobe.com>, Anne van Kesteren <annevk@opera.com>, "Michael(tm) Smith (mike@w3.org)" <mike@w3.org>, Philippe Le Hegaret <plh@w3.org>, www-archive <www-archive@w3.org>, Paul Cotton <Paul.Cotton@microsoft.com>, Shelley Powers <shelley.just@gmail.com>
Message-id: <41217882-6590-4D0D-A439-96CB33B6E0D1@apple.com>
To: Manu Sporny <msporny@digitalbazaar.com>
Hi Manu,

Rechartering is not something to be entered into lightly. It is a potentially disruptive process. It would be unwise to dive into it unless we have to. A few specific comments:

On Feb 5, 2010, at 9:45 PM, Manu Sporny wrote:

> If what is being asserted about Canvas 2D is correct, and it was a WG
> decision to accept it as a work product of HTML WG, then it shouldn't be
> a big deal to get the charter changed and have it added to the
> deliverables. The charter could use a refresh - the current chairs
> aren't even listed on the charter. H:TML isn't listed in the charter.

Changing the charter is in fact a big deal - it's a lot of work, takes a long time, and could lead to all sorts of unexpected changes. The charter is not generally updated for changes of chairs, nor for changes in deliverables that are within the original charter scope.

In the case of Canvas, not only was there a WG decision that it is in scope, but the WG also felt overall that there was no need to change the charter, and this was subsequently confirmed with the Chairs, the HTML Activity Lead, the Interaction Domain Lead and the Director in person.

Reopening the issue of immediate mode graphics being in scope is out of order unless someone has new information that was not available at the time of the original decision. And while anyone is free to make a Formal Objection to that old decision, such an objection would neither be timely nor likely to be effective (since this decision has already been reviewed by everyone who would be expected to review it).

> Similarly, if HTML WG is going to continue to publish WDs of Microdata
> and RDFa, it should probably be listed as work items, or in the very
> least, items of interest.

We will get input from the W3C Team on these two items in light of the charter, and based on you and Larry's comments.

> Someone unfamiliar with the HTML WG mailing list traffic would have no
> idea that it's working on any of the four items listed above. Each one
> of these items would normally have at least a task force or even a WG
> assigned to it. One more thing to consider is whether or not other WGs
> are more appropriate places for the work to continue. Just like the Web
> APIs WG was chosen to continue Data storage and Networking APIs, perhaps
> we should consider if HTML WG is absorbing too much work. I believe this
> is happening as a result of being at the receiving end of WHAT WG's
> monolithic draft (not a value statement or judgement - just as statement
> of how things are setup at the moment).

In the case of Canvas at least, I would expect anyone vaguely familiar with HTML5 would be surprised if it was *not* published by the HTML Working Group, at this point.

> So a couple of ways forward:
> * Update the charter to include a number of new work items that the WG
>  has decided to work on.
> * Update the charter with new work items, but delegate responsibility
>  on completing those items to joint task forces or WGs that are
>  already setup to deal with the work.
> * Don't update the charter, but put out calls to the AC to see if new
>  joint task forces or WGs should be setup for 2D Canvas, and
>  Microdata. If there is no interest in starting a new TF or WG for the
>  work, it may be a good indicator of whether or not the work should
>  continue to be of interest at the W3C.

In the case of the Canvas API, it is pretty clear to me that none of these steps are necessary. For the other items, we'll get guidance from the Team on what further action, if any, is necessary.

> I can volunteer to propose edits to the HTML WG charter if nobody else
> has the time to do it.

I appreciate your enthusiasm, but editing the charter is the responsibility of the Team and the rechartering process overall would be a bunch of work for the Team and the Chairs, in addition to introducing delay in our progress. Please realize that even if you can make a diff, there will be a lot of bureaucracy and a lot of work for other people, and based on past experience it's extremely unlikely the W3C would apply the diff directly in any case. I am also sure that when it *does* come time to revise our charter, it will be an extremely delicate task and I do not envy the person who will ultimately need to do the work.

All that being said, the next time we do need to recharter (which will be a little less than a year from now) we should try to make sure that the new charter is much more clear about these issues.

Received on Saturday, 6 February 2010 06:06:07 UTC

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