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Re: Why an errata page?

From: Ian Jacobs <ij@w3.org>
Date: Fri, 09 Oct 1998 20:07:12 -0400
Message-ID: <361EA530.313296DE@w3.org>
To: Jon Bailey <jonb@matchlogic.com>
CC: "'www-html-editor@w3.org'" <www-html-editor@w3.org>
Jon Bailey wrote:
> 
> Out of curiosity,
>   Why is the HTML spec kept live, online, with errors, and a separate errata
> page?

It is W3C's policy that technical reports will not be modified once
they are published. This is so that two people referring to a specific
document will always know they are referring to exactly the same
document.
 
> The spec mentions the electronic version's authoritativeness in differences
> between the published spec and the electronic one... could you perhaps
> provide PDF's / Flat text files of the spec with all the latest found errata
> corrected?

For the above reasons, we will not modify the printed versions with
a given address either. You would not want to print the document on
Tuesday only to find that on Wednesday, someone else printing it would
see a different document.

Our solution is to provide corrected versions periodically where
the errata have been fixed. We do not have a specified cycle for
doing so (we could, I agree), but rather fix the document when
the errata list grows too long.

I apologize if this policy proves inconvenient to you. However,
I think the guarantee of document integrity over time is worth
the extra time required to review the errata page.
 
 - Ian
Received on Friday, 9 October 1998 20:07:16 GMT

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