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Re: not closed by process rules [was: So, what's left?]

From: Dan Connolly <connolly@w3.org>
Date: Tue, 25 Jan 2000 23:05:16 -0600
Message-ID: <388E808C.E89D5439@w3.org>
To: Arjun Ray <aray@q2.net>
CC: www-html@w3.org
Arjun Ray wrote:
> 
> On Tue, 25 Jan 2000, Dan Connolly wrote:
> [rearranged]
> 
> > There's no W3C-wide rule that working groups must be closed.
> > W3C process *allows* working groups to be closed, but doesn't
> > require them to be.
> 
> Thanks for the clarification.
> 
> > short deadline? Eventually, we issue a last call with a finite
> > deadline, but that's not before the spec has been out for review
> > for quite some time. When did we release a draft with a short
> > deadline?
> 
> The new XHTML stuff comes out first week of January, and we have up to
> Feb 1 to submit comments.

Er... which stuff is that? I see some XHTML publications the first
week of January, but nothing new; this stuff has been available
for months; e.g.

"XHTML™ 1.1 - Module-based XHTML

This version: 
              http://www.w3.org/TR/2000/WD-xhtml11-20000105
[...]
         Previous version: 
              http://www.w3.org/TR/1999/WD-xhtml11-19990910 
	Diff-marked version: 
              xhtml11-diff-20000105.html "
and previous to that, the first publication was in April '99:
	http://www.w3.org/TR/1999/xhtml-modularization-19990406/

>  That *includes* grokking the stuff before
> venturing to comment.  Never mind being away on vacation or business
> trips or whatever.  Either 'Feb 1 2000' means something - thanks but
> no thanks after that date - or it doesn't.  Which is it?

It's a schedule that was arrived at after *significant* negotiation.
But if you can make a case that the public hasn't had sufficient
time to review it (in the face of evidence such as the above) then
those negotiations can be re-opened.


> > Each activity has its own structure. The proceedings of many
> > of the WAI WGs are publicly readable (and writeable, I think) for
> > example.
> >       http://www.w3.org/WAI/GL/
> >
> > The HTML WG has been member-confidential for a long time, but
> > nothing says it has to stay that way; charters generally last 18
> > months or so, and then they get renewed/updated/whatever. The HTML
> > WG could be rechartered to have public proceedings at any time, if
> > we thought we could get the engineers from member companies to
> > participate under those conditions.
> 
> > > We're lucky to have someone like you, offering information, but
> > > *by process rules* this is an exception.
> >
> > I don't see how it's an exception. Which part of the process are
> > you referring to?
> 
> My comments were based on my experience with the w3c-sgml-wg, which
> became the xml-sig in Summer 97.  Given that the w3c-sgml-wg archive
> had been public, I - and some others I discussed this with, I might
> add - saw no reason to have that list in camera.  We were given to
> understand that 'W3C Process Rules' required this, or somesuch [1].
> I can't think of any vendor or member who *didn't* particpate in the
> open-to-public-review w3c-sgml-wg list and then with a huge sigh of
> relief held forth in the back-room-boys-only xml-sig list.
> 
> [1] http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/w3c-sgml-wg/1997Jun/0462.html
> 
> Are you now syaing that all that was really unnecessary?

I suppose; I'm saying it was by choice, not by logical consequence
of W3C Process. You might understand from Jon's message that
he had no choice in the matter, but that's not what he says;
what he says is:

"Since we will be operating under W3C process rules beginning July 1,
some details of the formal relationship between the XML WG
(corresponding to the present SGML ERB) and the XML IG (corresponding
to the present SGML WG) will change, but I expect the basic dynamics
of the working relationship to remain much the same."

The situation was: other working groups that the XML WG was going to
start collaborating with were W3C member-confidential. So there
was a choice between smooth(-er) collaboration between the XML WG
and those other WGs on the one hand, and easy access to the public
to the XML WG proceedings on the other. The choice we (Jon, I, et. al.)
made was to facilitate collaboration with other W3C working groups
at the expense of public access.


> > I suppose it could be better, but it's quite a challenge to
> > actually get things to operate differently.
> 
> I think the way Jon Bosak ran w3c-sgml-wg was a model of excellence.

The trick was integrating the work of w3c-sgml-wg with the work of
other groups in and around W3C. That sort of thing is rarely, if ever,
smooth.

> 
> Arjun
> 

-- 
Dan Connolly
http://www.w3.org/People/Connolly/
Received on Wednesday, 26 January 2000 00:10:24 GMT

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