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Re: Draft Conformance Clause

From: Ian B. Jacobs <ij@w3.org>
Date: Wed, 16 Jan 2002 17:04:49 -0800
Message-ID: <3C462331.30C38A63@w3.org>
To: Lofton Henderson <lofton@rockynet.com>
CC: www-qa-wg@w3.org
Lofton Henderson wrote:
> 
[snip]
--------------------
> 4. Conformance
> 
> This section defines conformance of Working Group processes and
> operations to the requirements of this specification.  The
> requirements of this specification are detailed in the checkpoints of
> the preceding "Guidelines" chapter of this specification, and apply to
> the Working Group QA-related documents and deliverables required by
> this specification.
> 
> This section defines three levels of conformance to this
> specification:
>        Conformance Level 1: all Priority 1 checkpoints are satisfied;
> 
>        Conformance Level 2: all Priority 1 and 2 checkpoints are
> satisfied;
>        Conformance Level 3: all Priority 1, 2, and 3 checkpoints are
> satisfied;

Here's why we chose "Level Double-A" instead of "Level 2": It wasn't
clear to people that "2" meant "Priority 1 AND 2 requirements are
met." It could be interpreted as "no priority 1 requirements are met,
only those P2 and below (P3).". 

I would recommend sticking with A/AA/AAA just because that system
is already familiar to people within W3C. 

Is there an important reason for changing nomenclature?

> A Working Group conforms to the "QA Framework: Process & Operational
> Guidelines" if the Working Group meets at least all Conformance Level
> 1 requirements.

I don't recommend that, because it means that you can say 
"I conform to the document" without saying how much. For 
WCAG 1.0, you have to be explicit: "This page conforms level A." 

I don't think people should go around saying "I conform to the
QA Guidelines" when the conformance granularity is not binary
(conforms/doesn't conform). Since there are at least three
levels (1,2,3 or A,AA,AAA) I think you need to require people
to be explicit for *all* conformance claims.

So, I think the above sentence sets the wrong expectations that
one might be able to talk about conformance in a generic sense.

 - Ian

> To make an assertion about conformance to this document, specify:
>        The guidelines title: "QA Framework: Process & Operational
> Guidelines"
>        The guidelines URI: [...tbd...]
>        The conformance level satisfied: "Level 1", "Level 2", or
> "Level 3".
> 
> Example:
> This QA processes and operations of this Working Group [???] conform
> to W3C's "QA Framework: Process & Operational Guidelines", available
> at [...tbd...], Level 2.
> ----- end -----

-- 
Ian Jacobs (ij@w3.org)   http://www.w3.org/People/Jacobs
Tel:                     +1 718 260-9447
Received on Wednesday, 16 January 2002 20:04:46 GMT

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