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Feedback on MWBP 1.0

From: Tom Hume <Tom.Hume@futureplatforms.com>
Date: Wed, 16 Nov 2005 18:12:33 +0000
Message-Id: <61DD27D8-D5E2-45D2-A522-ACEE5BF3B967@futureplatforms.com>
To: public-bpwg@w3.org

(CCed from t'weblog: tomhume.org)

A bit o'travel has left me with some time to run through the mobile  
web best practices document. Some thoughts typed up:

1. The document states that its "primary goal is to improve the user  
experience of the Web when accessed from mobile devices.". Does this  
imply that there are many situations where the document doesn't seek  
to apply? e.g. in any WAP/XHTML-MP services being produced (which are  
mobile-specific, not web sites)? Or am I reading the document too  
pedantically? To me, the web on mobile seems to be distinct from  
mobile apps which might share elements of infrastructure or technology.

2. Given the comparative rarity of devices which can browse "the  
mobile web" today (we're talking PDAs and a few high-end handsets  
aren't we?) then am I right in thinking that this document is focused  
more on a hypothetical future of 2-3 years away than around services  
being built today/tomorrow?

3. I'd agree with most of the recommendations. They seem in some  
parts to be head-thumpingly simple and obvious, but I've been very  
close to this industry for some time now so that's to be expected, I  
think (and IMHO one characteristic of a good idea is that it's  
obvious in retrospect). I don't believe these are necessarily obvious  
to a target audience of web developers.

4. I'd be interested to hear more about the advantages of mobile  
devices (section 3.7). This might provide a more positive  
counterweight to a document which is otherwise on a fairly negative  
slant (in that it's otherwise focused on limitations, things we cut  
out of the web to make mobile, etc.)

5. I'd agree with the assertion in section 4.2 that adaptation is  
required to deliver all non-trivial mobile services. We even saw this  
on the fixed internet (netscape vs ie) - sure, we got the users to  
make a decision as to which version they see (mmm that's a nice user  
experience) but it still happened.

Overall, this seems like a reasonable starting point to me. I don't  
see anything here that I violently disagree with; much of it seems  
vague but I suspect (not that I've ever been involved in an effort  
like this) that with many vendors pulling in different directions,  
any consensus is a success.

One weirdie tho: why is the semantic markup section there, when even  
the group admits it doesn't know what it is? Is TBL standing over  
them with a Big Stick?

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Received on Thursday, 17 November 2005 01:07:50 UTC

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