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Re: [css3-writing-modes] inconsistent handling of 'Tr' codepoints in 'text-orientation'

From: Sylvain Galineau <galineau@adobe.com>
Date: Wed, 2 Oct 2013 10:22:09 -0700
To: Koji Ishii <kojiishi@gluesoft.co.jp>
CC: W3C Style <www-style@w3.org>
Message-ID: <CE719E6D.D7E6%galineau@adobe.com>


On 10/2/13 9:43 AM, "Koji Ishii" <kojiishi@gluesoft.co.jp> wrote:

>I have no idea what makes you so emotional. Did I say something impolite
>or illogical?

I'm sorry; what was emotional? Baffled is not really intended to represent
an emotion here; I don't understand why anyone would think offering
implementors multiple ways to do one thing makes their lives easier or
reduces compatibility issues; or why we make CSS more compatible with
Unicode when we say it's conformant to take an incompatible option. Those
things just don't add up. And every attempt to clarify the gap just ends
up with a re-iteration of the same confusing assertions. So yeah, it's
baffling. There is nothing emotional about it; John, you and I just appear
to be stuck in a pattern and I can't figure out a way out of it.

So nothing impolite at all; but illogical, sure. I've pointed out quite a
few things I find illogical.

>
>Your opinion is not to have two options, I understand that, but which?

Based on John's compelling argument and the opinion of a few experts I've
heard from I do not think the fallback behavior is necessary.

>
>1. We accepted John's proposal to move text-orientation:mixed to Unicode
>two years ago.
>2. John then said Tr is hard to implement for him, tiny tailoring will
>make it much easier.
>3. Another implementer said John's proposal is hard for him, requested to
>stick to Unicode.
>
>Both are the same arguments, just opposite, and the numbers of supporters
>are coincidentally the same as of today.

Again, a spec is not some kind of voting contest where we add alternatives
every time a few people want things to behave a certain way. Otherwise
Microsoft may prefer a third option tomorrow and then we need to add that.
Next week Apple may want have a fourth etc. Would the resulting menu of
implementation option constitute a standard?

>
>I agree with you as general rules, but in this specific case, I do not
>see a good way to pick one, nor anything anyone would lose by allowing
>both.
>
>John already mentioned that users and authors will not know the
>difference.

If they cannot tell the difference then what is the benefit of having two
ways to do it, with two sets of testcases etc.? And if the result is the
same then picking one is easy: the one that is simplest to code and test
because it's the one that will be easiest to get right.

>
>You're right implementers need to spend time on choosing which
>implementation s/he would take, but the cost return will pay the time
>s/he spend to choose.

If there is zero difference to users and authors, what is the payoff of
writing *more* code?

>
>I can write a test that both implementations can pass. I haven't done it
>yet, but I know how to do it and I'm hoping to write it in some TTWF.
>
>Well, if you're talking only about general rules but not this specific
>case, I completely agree with you, sorry that this discussion must be a
>noise to you.

If it was noise to me I'd completely ignore it. I don't understand what
you and John are jammed on; I've chatted with people more knowledgeable
than me about this topic and thus far they've been unanimously as confused
as me. Thanks for trying though...

>
>-----Original Message-----
>From: Sylvain Galineau [mailto:galineau@adobe.com]
>Sent: Thursday, October 3, 2013 1:06 AM
>To: Koji Ishii
>Cc: W3C Style
>Subject: Re: [css3-writing-modes] inconsistent handling of 'Tr'
>codepoints in 'text-orientation'
>
>
>
>On 10/2/13 8:42 AM, "Koji Ishii" <kojiishi@gluesoft.co.jp> wrote:
>
>>> >It's implementers and implementers. On one side, two implementers
>>> >said it's hard, so we added option B. On the other side, two
>>> >implementers said they'd favor option A. One of them said he has
>>> >already implemented option A.
>>> 
>>> I do not think your role as editor is to log every implementor
>>>preference and spec it as an  alternative. It is a very bad idea for
>>>specs to offer implementors equally conformant option  as this results
>>>in incompatibility for content and authors.
>>
>>I completely agree with your statement on the editor's role, and the
>>second sentence as well.
>>
>>This is the case where all agreed that the incompatibility caused by
>>the difference is very subtle, almost unnoticeable, and will be
>>completely gone when user use the right fonts.
>
>If this is such a small unnoticeable issue then specifying multiple
>implementation options is massive overkill. I also fail to understand why
>we'd want to suggest fallback behavior if we believe users will always
>have the right font in the not-so-distant future.
>
>One more thing: that someone already implemented one of these options is
>not a valid motive to include it in the spec or keep it there. We do not
>create implementation forks in a standard because someone did something
>at the draft stage.
>
>
>>
>>The costs to implement vary by underlying architecture. For one
>>architecture, option A is much cheaper, while for another architecture,
>>it's opposite.
>
>The cost of UAs doing the same thing differently should be multiplied by
>all the authors who will have to deal with it. You should consider the
>overall cost of varying implementations, not just the cost to the tiny
>number of people who implement it.
>
>Also, if we believe implementors to be sensitive to implementation cost
>then it's entirely reasonable to assume they will overwhelmingly favor
>the option that does not include extra work i.e. they will not implement
>the fallback behavior. That is also a good reason to question its
>necessity.
>
>>
>>Having two options help both implementers, while we lose almost zero,
>>compatibility in the real world isn't sacrificed, only tests might
>>fail, and some does care passing tests.
>
>I completely disagree. Having multiple options to choose from does not
>help implementors, not is it compatibility-neutral. It will  also require
>more test cases since you need a set of tests for each conformant
>alternative. It is more work for everyone; yet you argued earlier that
>this is an subtle unnoticeable problem. Why would we want to increase the
>cost of dealing with a minor issue?
>
>>
>>That is why I'm asking, why John thinks we should remove option A.
>
>I think we have reached a pretty complete communication failure at this
>stage, since so many of your arguments rely either on known design
>anti-patterns or incoherent positions. I'll admit I'm 100% baffled here.
>
>>
>>/koji
>>
>

Received on Wednesday, 2 October 2013 17:22:56 UTC

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