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Re: Testable assertion tagging for W3C specifications

From: Lofton Henderson <lofton@rockynet.com>
Date: Tue, 28 May 2002 15:05:42 -0600
Message-Id: <5.1.0.14.2.20020528143942.02e30740@rockynet.com>
To: Alex Rousskov <rousskov@measurement-factory.com>, Dimitris Dimitriadis <dimitris@ontologicon.com>
Cc: www-qa@w3.org
At 10:56 AM 5/27/2002 -0600, Alex Rousskov wrote:
>[...]
>Yes, having a one-for-all standard will simplify linking and tracking
>document updates until the document becomes stable. However, it is not
>clear to me whether these somewhat temporary advantages outweigh the
>drawbacks of one-size-fits-all approach and introduction of yet
>another standard.

Having a standard cuts both ways -- it is one more thing to have spend time 
picking up and applying, but on the other hand it saves the effort of 
constantly re-inventing new ways to do common things.  At a recent tech 
plenary, someone asked, "How may of you put together and maintain your own 
issues-tracking schemes?"  Lots of wasted time in the forest of hands that 
went up!

Right now, I'm inventing some new markup for the Framework documents -- fun 
but time-consuming.  It would be nice to have a collection of techniques 
for potential adoption (and if none of them fit my requirements, *then* 
some invention is in order.)

Beyond saving re-invention, I don't have a problem with diversity per 
se.  If each WGs solutions satisfy quality requirements that we are trying 
to articulate at a high level (e.g., "Traceability", of a test case back to 
its underlying test assertions and supporting statements in the spec), then 
that seems like the first priority requirement.  As with WAI, I anticipate 
some diversity of ways to satisfy a checkpoint.

However, where uniformity might pay off is further downstream in the QAWG 
work.  We're just starting to investigate the question, to what degree can 
we create and offer a collection of common formats, tools, templates, etc, 
for the building, management, and maintenance of test suites (so that each 
WG doesn't have to invent all of this stuff also)?  We are unsure of the 
answer, but this seems true:  uniformity (of specs, etc) will help, 
diversity will hurt.

-Lofton.
Received on Tuesday, 28 May 2002 17:07:05 GMT

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