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Re: modularity in specifications

From: Lofton Henderson <lofton@rockynet.com>
Date: Mon, 18 Mar 2002 11:35:45 -0700
Message-Id: <5.1.0.14.2.20020318104945.01d70960@rockynet.com>
To: Lynne Rosenthal <lynne.rosenthal@nist.gov>
Cc: www-qa-wg@w3.org
At 12:04 PM 3/18/02 -0500, you wrote:
>Thanks for the examples- it helps.  I'm not surprised that you didn't know 
>exactly what I meant, since I'm trying to figure that out 
>myself.  Basically, I'm tyring to figure out - from a QA perspective, in 
>the Specification Guideline,
>
>(1)  what does modularity mean for a specification  - (this is something 
>someone mentioned in OASIS).  One interpretation is that in order to 
>conform, several different pieces (modules) must be present and and those 
>pieces must be conforming.  e.g., your SVG example and I'm thinking SMIL?

Are you using modularity in the sense of "XHTML Modularization", or 
similarly the in-progress SVG (1.1) Modularization [2]?  A quick read of 
the intro sections of XHTML and its conformance clause [1] might shed some 
light.

It seems to me that these are more tightly structured variations on the 
themes of optionality or discretionary features -- the language is  a 
collection of bits that can be mixed and matched (and added to and 
extended), after certain minimal constraints are met (i.e., there  are 
minimal module requirements for any conforming document type, instance, or 
user agent.)

>The question now is - is this something to address in the Spec 
>Guideline?  If so, what Guideline/checkpoints make sense

If we are talking about modularization as done in XHTML, SVG 1.1, and 
others that have joined the modularization trend, "yes".  At first thought, 
I'd guess we could define better ways and worse ways to define a 
modularization (from a conformance standpoint).  Same comment applies to 
the less structured approach of discretionary and optional features in a 
Recommendation.

I agree that something needs to be said about #3, dependence on other 
specifications.


>(2) Maybe there isn't anything that needs to be said, other than #3.  Or 
>is this something that Pubs Rules or Style Manual already requires - so we 
>don't need to have it here?
>
> >#3  A specification is dependent on other specifications.  As part of the
> > conformance statements, should a checkpoint require that these other
> > specifications and their affect on claiming conformance of this
> > specification be described.


-Lofton.


[1] http://www.w3.org/TR/xhtml-modularization/conformance.html#s_conform
[2] http://www.w3.org/TR/SVG11/
Received on Monday, 18 March 2002 13:33:53 GMT

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