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Re: Versioning and HTML -- CR exit criteria

From: ashok malhotra <ashok.malhotra@oracle.com>
Date: Tue, 28 Apr 2009 06:45:08 -0700
Message-ID: <49F70864.6070700@oracle.com>
To: Larry Masinter <masinter@adobe.com>
CC: "www-tag@w3.org WG" <www-tag@w3.org>
 > Test cases, even if results are reported honestly, only verify 
implementation of the test cases and not of the specification.

This is tautologically correct but a bit strong.  A set of well written 
test cases *can* test compliance with the spec.

All the best, Ashok


Larry Masinter wrote:
> This is a little off-topic from "versioning and HTML" except
> for the assertion that once HTML exits CR, no incompatible
> changes will ever be necessary.
>
>
> IF there are two implementations that are actually built
> from reading the spec itself, and the implementations interoperate, then
> you have some confidence that the spec isn't incomprehensible and that
> it is actually possible to build SOMETHING interoperable based on it.
>
> The process assumes that the assertions that the implementations in 
> fact match the specification are made in good faith. Unfortunately,
> this isn't always the case. 
>
> Many specifications unfortunately are completely incomprehensible,
> and the CR exit criteria doesn't explicitly require that the 
> implementations weren't built using inside knowledge and the
> spec written after the fact.
>
> Even if the implementations are written based on the specification
> rather than the other way around, there is no process for verifying
> that they match. Test cases, even if results are reported honestly,
> only verify implementation of the test cases and not of the
> specification.
>
> Having only two implementations is hardly a guarantee of the
> utility of the specification for wide applicability.  Surely
> only two implementations aren't a guarantee that the considerations
> of the wide variety of devices, operating systems, usability
> concerns, international contexts, networking situations have
> really been considered, even for the simplest of specifications.
>
> As noted earlier, even if there are many implementations, all
> built based on the specifications, over time requirements change,
> and changing requirements might require incompatible changes.
>
> It is never possible to " ensure that problems with defining 
> behavior incorrectly for the long term are all caught."
>
> Larry
>   
Received on Tuesday, 28 April 2009 13:45:00 GMT

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