W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-qa-wg@w3.org > April 2003

Re: My Action Item to rewrite definition of "normative"

From: Lynne Rosenthal <lynne.rosenthal@nist.gov>
Date: Tue, 29 Apr 2003 13:07:40 -0400
Message-Id: <>
To: www-qa-wg@w3.org

>>"Contains conformance requirements" and "required for conformance" are, 
>>in my mind, the same thing.
>I think there is a subtle difference, although I accept your final 
>conclusion.  "required for conformance", I believe, can be more widely 
>interpreted than "prescriptive or contains conformance requirements".  For 
>example, it is easier to construct an argument that Glossary is normative 
>under the UAAG definition than under the SpecGL (or QA Glossary) definition.
>Argument goes like this, "our Conformance Requirements (tagged and styled) 
>use terms from our Definitions, therefore these term definitions are 
>'required for conformance'".  I'm guessing that is along the lines that IJ 
>and JM were thinking, in their comments.

Is this a suggestion to change the text of the Normative Definition to 
'required for conformance'?
Also, note that additionally qualification will be added to section 3.1 
Normative Parts, "...Text that is designated as normative (link to 
definition) is directly applicable to achieving conformance to this 

>>I do not believe that our definition is "narrowly focused" and, thus, I 
>>don't believe it should be amended to imply that it is narrowly 
>>focused.  I don't think we should amend our definition to say it is 
>>directly connected to conformance (since it already says that).
>>I believe the difference is the way in which the two definitions are 
>>applied.  Our definition is narrowly applied and UUAG's is not.
>Moreover, (the flip side) I think that UAAG's supports wider 
>interpretation and application than ours.
>Now, in search of words for DoC, do we really mean "narrowly applied", or 
>"narrowly applicable" (i.e., does not admit to application as wide as some 
>of the other definitions).

See above - it is applicable to achieving conformance.  I guess that means 
it 'narrowly applicable'

>p.s.  I notice that normative and informative are not in the QA 
>Glossary.  Should they be?  Or is it best to keep them in our GL documents 
>only, where they are used, and not risk opening a W3C-wide argument about 
>"normative" (at least, not now)?  Why do I say "risk"?  Because the header 
>of the QA Glossary says, "It should be used as a definition for working 
>groups to define their terms in Technical Reports and documentation issued 
>inside and outside W3C."  In other words, we're telling UAAG to use our 
>definition, and that sort of dispute is not a good place to spend our time 
>now, IMO.

Since we must use normative and informative in OpsGL and TestGL - and I 
hope we use it in the same way, then the definitions are broader than 
SpecGL and probably should be in QA Glossary.

Received on Tuesday, 29 April 2003 13:08:07 UTC

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.3.1 : Tuesday, 6 January 2015 21:14:30 UTC