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Re: [css-flexbox-1] Untestable assertions

From: Sylvain Galineau <galineau@adobe.com>
Date: Mon, 15 Apr 2013 17:17:36 -0700
To: Arron Eicholz <Arron.Eicholz@microsoft.com>, "Tab Atkins Jr." <jackalmage@gmail.com>
CC: fantasai <fantasai@inkedblade.net>, Rossen Atanassov <Rossen.Atanassov@microsoft.com>, www-style list <www-style@w3.org>
Message-ID: <CD91E2F3.24BF%galineau@adobe.com>


On 4/15/13 11:45 AM, "Arron Eicholz" <Arron.Eicholz@microsoft.com> wrote:

>On Monday, April 15, 2013 11:18 AM Tab Atkins Jr. wrote:
>> On Mon, Apr 15, 2013 at 10:31 AM, Arron Eicholz
>> <Arron.Eicholz@microsoft.com> wrote:
>> > On Monday, April 15, 2013 9:52 AM Tab Atkins Jr. wrote:
>> >> On Mon, Apr 15, 2013 at 8:49 AM, Arron Eicholz
>> >> <Arron.Eicholz@microsoft.com> wrote:
>> >> > On Saturday, April 13, 2013 12:10 PM Tab Atkins Jr. wrote:
>> >> >> The words are intended to be part of RFC2119.  The fact that they
>> >> >> can't be automatically tested is irrelevant, because we won't be
>> >> >> testing them anyway (they're authoring conformance, not UA
>> >> conformance).
>> >> >
>> >> > I really don't care about the RFC2119 in this situation. I am
>> >> > pointing out the
>> >> fact that we can't test author's conformance. And we cannot require
>> >> authors to do anything. Authors have the freedom of choice to do
>>things.
>> >>
>> >> And *I'm* pointing out that we don't test authoring conformance
>>criteria.
>> >> That's for validators and evangelists to do.
>> >
>> > Ahh but we have to verify normative statements in the spec that have
>> testable assertions. And in these cases they are testable assertions.
>> 
>> Who is "we"?  If you're trying to imply that the CSSWG has to test
>>authoring
>> conformance criteria in order to exit CR, you're wrong.  No WG has ever
>>been
>> blocked from advancing for failing to test authoring criteria.
>
>"We" is test writers and the testers that have to verify the test cases
>that are written. The working group has very little to do with either of
>these. The WG sets of the criteria to write tests and right now it is
>loosely defined to encompass all normative statements require tests. Thus
>we then run into my issue that I called out.
>
>A WG would be blocked if such tests were written but there have been from
>what I can tell no cases written in CSS 2.1 (which has the most complete
>suite). In fact CSS 2.1 explicitly identified author information as
>non-normative. The Flexbox spec does not have similar text in the
>conformance section. This is another issue that should be corrected and
>actually would fix this problem all together.
>
>CSS 2.1 states
>#   At times, this specification recommends good practice for authors and
>#   user agents. These recommendations are not normative and conformance
>#   with this specification does not depend on their realization. These
>#   recommendations contain the expression "We recommend ...", "This
>#   specification recommends ...", or some similar wording.
>
>> >> >> As Henrik says, this style of authoring conformance is used
>> >> >> elsewhere, such as HTML.
>> >> >
>> >> > While I agree that there may be other places that follow this same
>> pattern.
>> >> It does not justify the fact that it is incorrect to state the
>>sentence this
>> way.
>> >> Also I have seen very few normative, if any, statements that use this
>> >> particular grammar and fall into this situation. We could also make
>> >> these notes and that would also solve the problem.
>> >>
>> >> No, this is literally used everywhere.  Every single time a validator
>> >> raises an error, it's because of an authoring conformance criteria.
>> >> These are sometimes implicit rather than explicit, but that's largely
>> >> because we simple don't care as much about being precise with
>> >> authoring conformance.
>> >
>> > Please point me to more situations like this. I will raise issues
>>because they
>> require tests to test authors' compliance with something. All the other
>>cases I
>> have seen similar to this right now are in notes, which aren't
>>normative.
>> 
>> See: any part of CSS that would result in a validator error, any part
>>of HTML
>> that would result in a validator error, etc.
>
>I am not reviewing HTML, nor am I reviewing any other specs as the
>moment. I have found issues in the Flexbox spec and this is what I have
>called out for now. When I review the next CSS spec I will call out the
>same issues if I find them there as well.
>
>> >> > Wouldn't it just be easier to fix the issue since and issue was
>> >> > raised, than to
>> >> continue to argue this point over email?
>> >>
>> >> ...really?
>> >
>> > Yes really. It's easy to fix these simple grammar mistakes I have
>>pointed
>> out. I have edited specs and I know it takes only 5-10 minutes to make
>>simple
>> edits like this.
>> 
>> I wasn't questioning the ease - of course it's easy.  I was questioning
>>the
>> tone, which implies that I should be taking the easiest way out rather
>>than
>> the correct way.  But this is an irrelevant tangent, and I'm not going
>>to pursue
>> it.
>
>Then you incorrectly took my tone from my email. I am not trying to be
>difficult or argumentative I am trying to be helpful and constructive. If
>you take offense to me correcting your grammar in your spec, I am sorry,
>but this grammar needs to change only slightly to be ok. Am I a little
>frustrated that you won't fix a simple grammar error, yes, but I am not
>trying to be rude to you about fixing this issue in any way.
>
>--
I'm not sure I quite follow the argument here; as I understand it, job #1
for the test suite is to verify normative requirements of the spec can be
*implemented*. Requirements that relate to how the feature should be
*used* - authoring requirements - are out of scope for the test suite. I'm
not aware of any rule requiring the latter to not use RFC2119 language,
nor do I grasp why they should not use such language.

Figuring out which is which seems pretty easy to me (and I very much doubt
you, Arron, have doubts); should we instead mark authoring requirements
with a specific class so they can be styled differently? HTML did this, I
think. 
Received on Tuesday, 16 April 2013 00:18:09 UTC

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