W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > public-bpwg@w3.org > November 2005

RE: Feedback on MWBP 1.0

From: Magnus Lönnroth <magnus.lonnroth@drutt.com>
Date: Thu, 17 Nov 2005 09:17:05 +0100
Message-ID: <AE5206456B17D140876BD091993CD49A95F369@indus.drutt.net>
To: "Tom Hume" <Tom.Hume@futureplatforms.com>
Cc: <public-bpwg@w3.org>
> 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?

I hope so. In my opinion focus should be on mobile devices browsing THE
web. For that you need HTML and HTTP. I personally do not want WAP/WML,
ringtones, MMS, J2ME, etc to be part of all this.

> 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?

I hope not. To me this is now. More or less all handsets released during
the past year or two contain a decent browser capable of rendering HTML,
WML, and variations of XHTML/XHTML-MP. There's also Opera. The problem
lies in the content being delivered to them: it's too big and too complex
and written in a way that makes content adaptation nearly impossible
except in lab demos of current single-click-make-the-web-mobile-products.

> 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.

In my opinion web designers have been in a downward spiral since day one
of the web. For reasons unknown to me, they seem to increasingly prefer
atrocities like fixed-width layout and fixed-size fonts, etc. I hope we
can create a strong message saying "No, this is not OK to do". It's
actually one of the major reasons why THE web isn't working very well on
small screens.

> 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.)

They're mobile and are a lot easier to lug around than a laptop. You can
also talk to people with them ;)

> 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?

Well, I think there's consensus that meta-data (=semantic markup) is going
to be needed in order to do any useful content adaptation. In what form is
TBD - I personally hope the BPWG will favor ease-of-use over elegance and
recommend something dirt-simple like an element attribute and *not* a new
XML namespace etc.


Magnus Lonnroth
CTO, Drutt Corporation

Received on Thursday, 17 November 2005 08:17:32 UTC

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