CTG: repository of ICS / testing mailing list.

I propose an addition to the "Conformance" section of the CTG.


The CTG stipulate that conformant proxy deployments must formalize their compliance
through an ICS. However,

a) There is no independent organization in charge of testing proxy deployments,
certifying their conformance and establishing an ICS. These tasks are left to the
proxy operators themselves, which are therefore self-certifiers.

b) The W3C does not intend to validate an ICS after the fact. Rather, the community 
of service providers and application developers is supposed to do so through testing
interfaces provided by the proxy operators.

c) Conformance to the CTG implies the production of an ICS, but the guidelines are
mute as to how and where an ICS is to be made available.


The following text is to be included in a new section 3.5 "Repository of conformance

"The World-Wide-Web Consortium sets up and maintains a public mailing list to 
disseminate and store information about the conformance of transformation proxy 
deployments against the present guidelines. The mailing list, which may be moderated,
fulfills the following purposes:

a) An operator of a transformation proxy publishes
   1.   the ICS and revisions thereof corresponding to its proxy deployment 
	(possibly as a URI pointing to a public site of the operator where the
	relevant documents can be accessed);
   2.   information about the testing interface to its proxy (possibly via a URI
	pointing to a site with the complete information about configuration 
	parameters, conditions of access, etc);
   3.   the announcement of discontinuation of a proxy and the retraction of its 
	associated ICS.

b) An end-user, a service provider or an application developer may publish
   1.	a review of a published ICS with respect to its correctness, completeness 
	and intelligibility;
   2.   results of testing a transformation proxy against the guidelines through 
	an operator's testing interface (possibly as a URI pointing to a site
	containing the complete description of the results, a ZIP archive with the 
	resources used for testing, etc);
   3.   an assessment of the consistency of a proxy deployment against the guidelines
	on the basis of tests or experience reports.

The mailing list is located at http://lists.w3.org/[to be determined]."

The following text is to be inserted into section 5 "Testing":

"Information about the availability of a testing interface MUST be published in the
mailing list given in section 3.5."

The text in section 3.4 must be adjusted as follows:

"A Transformation Deployment that wishes to claim conformance MUST make available
in the mailing list specified in section 3.4 a conformance statement (B Conformance 
Statement) that specifies the reasons for non-compliance with any clauses containing
the key words should and should not. 

Retractions of conformance statements MUST be announced in the aforementioned 
mailing list."


Setting up such a mailing list would be advantageous in several ways:

a) It makes it easy for users, developers and service providers to retrieve 
conformance declarations: rather than scouring the WWW for each operator's documents,
they can find the information in one place (at least, all the relevant URI in one

b) It makes it easy for operators to discharge their duty of information: the mailing
list constitutes an officially sanctioned channel to release ICS and associated data
about proxy deployments.

c) It increases transparency in the mobile market: the centralized publication of 
ICS and test results makes it clear which operators are actually abiding to the
guidelines and where there are problems. From this perspective, such a mailing list
would go some way to self-policing the environment of transformation proxies.

d) It helps resolve problems with proxy deployments: all parties can learn about
issues with specific proxy deployments; operators using the same products know then 
what to correct, developers and service providers what possible workarounds to rely

e) It facilitates the maintenance of the CTG: the W3C can follow contributions to 
the mailing list to identify parts of the guidelines that must be made more precise
or extended to take into account aspects not dealt with in their current version.



Received on Thursday, 18 June 2009 18:04:06 UTC