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Re: [Glossary] Definition of a portable document (and other things...)

From: AUDRAIN LUC <LAUDRAIN@hachette-livre.fr>
Date: Fri, 4 Sep 2015 17:41:50 +0200
To: Ivan Herman <ivan@w3.org>, Peter Brantley <peter@archive.org>
CC: W3C Digital Publishing IG <public-digipub-ig@w3.org>
Message-ID: <D20F87E1.5592B%laudrain@hachette-livre.fr>
Hi Ivan,

Or not : our grandchildren or grand-grandchildren may decide that in an
ubiquitous network, they sometimes need for any good reason to be
unplugged when reading or consuming any contentŠ


Le 04/09/2015 17:37, Ğ Ivan Herman ğ <ivan@w3.org> a écrit :

>Thanks Peter, that is a good point.
>Maybe we have to separate things. We have a 'Web document', ie, the
>uniquely identifiable interrelated resources, etc. and the we have the
>Portable (Web) Document is the part on the online/offline and graceful
>degradation. The concept of Web Document is something that is really for
>eternity, the the concept of Portable document is only for the time until
>the network is ubiquitous, etc.
>(Putting another way, our grandchildren or grand-grandchildren may decide
>that the concept of Portable documents have become obsolete:-)
>> On 04 Sep 2015, at 16:38 , Peter Brantley <peter@archive.org> wrote:
>> Hello all -
>> Thought experiment - assume the network is ubiquitous, in the nature of
>> radio, and there is no barrier (technology, economic, social) to access.
>> What is the utility, in that guise, of defining "portable" ? Is the goal
>> to carve out space for a complex object that is capable of holistic
>> reference?
>> Is the issue not instead, in some way, that component resource access
>> might be constrained by bandwidth, geographic restrictions (depending on
>> where one is in the world), and potentially social considerations (the
>> wrong video or even language in the wrong place will get one killed).
>> Should not "portable" work both in the present world when there is
>> uneven access, and one when (hopefully) inequality has been removed
>> from essential connectivity?
>> Too much focus on online/offline makes me think of a privileged world
>> which sometimes travels on airplanes or rail with limited bandwidth, not
>> a world in which cell towers, satellites, and balloons are beginning to
>> cloud the skies. There are other issues here than just how fast the
>> bytes go in the tubes.
>> /pb
>> On 9/4/15 7:29 AM, Ivan Herman wrote:
>>>> On 04 Sep 2015, at 16:09 , Leonard Rosenthol <lrosenth@adobe.com>
>>>> Thanks for bringing this back up, Ivan.
>>>> Your suggestion for Portable Web Document has some interesting
>>>>tidbits, but Iıd like to tweak it a bitŠ
>>>> **Portable Web Document** is a specific collection of uniquely
>>>>identifiable resources that can be accessed either online or offline.
>>>> Now, let me explain why I made the changes I did.
>>>> First, degradation is a feature of a reader/viewer and not of a file
>>> Hm. That is of course true.
>>>> So we canıt talk about that in the definition of the format itself.
>>>> Second, I thought online/offline, being terms that we use elsewhere
>>>>fit better than ³active server infrastructure².
>>>> And finally, since we donıt define ³portable² anywhere else (at least
>>>>not yet), we canıt really use it in this definition.  (remember what
>>>>they taught you in school - you canıt define a word with itself).
>>> I agree with thatŠ although, at least in mathematics, such recursive
>>>definitions are not unusual. But even in those, I agree, we must start
>>>somewhereŠ I guess we can leave that transitivity part aside for now.
>>> I think the problem I have with the removal of the degradation is that
>>>your definition suggests the document is exactly identical whether
>>>online or offline, whereas we agreed on the thread that this may not be
>>>the case while still keeping the same document (the font case, for
>>> What about:
>>> **Portable Web Document** is a uniquely identifiable set of resources
>>>that can be accessed either online or offline, and that provides enough
>>>information to ensure a graceful degradation when presented to the user
>>>even if offline.
>>> (I am not sure about the term "information" although, in the general
>>>sense, it is probably o.k.)
>>> Re-reading this I also miss another 'user facing' feature that is not
>>>in any of these definitions. I think the graceful degradation is a
>>>matter of not loosing things if something is not around (again, the
>>>font example is a good one), but I wonder whether we should not include
>>>another issue to the definition, namely that the document should also
>>>include enough information to gracefully *adapt* to the user. What I
>>>mean is: adapt to the users' device (format, resolution, etc), to the
>>>user's possible accessibility issues, etc. I think we should also make
>>>it part of the definition.
>>> Ivan
>>>> The other terms in the glossary page look like a good start as well
>>>>on other things we need to define and agree on.
>>>> Leonard
>>>> On 9/4/15, 9:54 AM, "Ivan Herman" <ivan@w3.org> wrote:
>>>>> Dear all
>>>>> A few weeks ago Leonard started a long thread[1] on the necessity to
>>>>>properly define, ie, have some sort of a glossary entry, for some of
>>>>>the terms we use or will be using. (Leonard's mail[2] was only on the
>>>>>term "Portable Document" but his concerns are, I guess, more
>>>>>general.) This issue came up recently on one of our telcos, too.
>>>>> There are a number of terms that I believe we do have to define at
>>>>>least for our own work. I have put some (as agreed on the call) on a
>>>>>wiki page[2]; I am sure there are more. For each of those terms I
>>>>>think we had, in the past, a certain level of fuzziness in what we
>>>>>said and maybe wrote; maybe we should begin this new era of the new
>>>>>charter to clarify our own thoughts...
>>>>> I think the fundamental term we have to start with is indeed the
>>>>>concept Portable/Web Document that Leonard hit through the EPUB+WEB
>>>>>paper; so maybe we could decide first on a definition that we can all
>>>>>live with as a basis. Indeed, we also have to answer a fundamental
>>>>>question: why is digital publishing, portable documents, etc,
>>>>>different than just putting a page up on the Web?
>>>>> I have gone through the thread[1]. It have actually copy/pasted some
>>>>>extracts at the end of this mail (after my signature...) which I
>>>>>found important at least for myself.
>>>>> The thread almost concluded with BillM putting forward a definition
>>>>>in[4] but Leonard disagreed with it [5]. To move forward, let me
>>>>>offer modified version of Bill's definition as follows (I also put it
>>>>>on the wiki page[3], just as a placeholder!):
>>>>> [[[
>>>>> **Portable Web Document** is a uniquely identifiable set of
>>>>>resources that together provide a graceful degradation when presented
>>>>>to the user even if an active server infrastructure is not available.
>>>>>All components of a portable document should themselves be portable.
>>>>> ]]]
>>>>> There was an agreement on the thread that the notion of portable
>>>>>document has some fuzziness; hence the term 'graceful degradation'. I
>>>>>think this reflects some of the arguments: e.g., a font being on the
>>>>>Web (Leonard's example) may not create a problem if it is a choice
>>>>>between two latin fonts, but may become one when it is a special font
>>>>>for some very special character sets. The document should be
>>>>>considered as 'portable' in the former case but shouldn't in the
>>>>>latter. I have also added the reference to the identity; I believe it
>>>>>is very important that the particular collection of resources should
>>>>>be have togetherness that can be identified.
>>>>> WDYT?
>>>>> Ivan
>>>>> [1] http://w3.org/brief/NDYy
>>>>> [2] 
>>>>> [3] https://www.w3.org/dpub/IG/wiki/Glossary
>>>>> [4] 
>>>>> [5] 
>>>>> ----
>>>>> Ivan Herman, W3C
>>>>> Digital Publishing Lead
>>>>> Home: http://www.w3.org/People/Ivan/
>>>>> mobile: +31-641044153
>>>>> ORCID ID: http://orcid.org/0000-0003-0782-2704
>>>>> To me what fundamentally distinguishes portable documents from
>>>>>arbitrary websites is solely that portable documents "promise" a
>>>>>reliable consumption experience without respect of any particular
>>>>>server infrastructure and, especially, without such server
>>>>>infrastructure providing interactivity. (BillM)
>>>>> [...]it is reasonable to consider the publication complete[...] if
>>>>>those links/citations are present, even if they are not actionable at
>>>>>a given time (e.g., when the portable version of the publication is
>>>>>consumed offline), and whether or not the external content has been
>>>>>cached. (BillK)
>>>>> [...] the portable publication may in fact go "fetch" the quiz, or
>>>>>something even simpler like a streaming video. So in those cases I
>>>>>would agree that the quiz or the video, though external resources,
>>>>>_should_ be considered part of the publication, and the publication
>>>>>not to be "complete" without it. (BillK)
>>>>> As for the semantics, we should probably focus on what we mean by
>>>>>"portable," and not get quite so hung up on what we mean by
>>>>>"complete." That is verging very close to the argument about what
>>>>>"is" (BillK)
>>>>> [...] I think that a fully portable document/publication should be
>>>>>expected to have the transitive property of portability. That is to
>>>>>say, all its components (like quizzes) should themselves be portable.
>>>>>The less this is true the less we can consider the overall
>>>>>publication to be a portable document and the more it is a website
>>> ----
>>> Ivan Herman, W3C
>>> Digital Publishing Lead
>>> Home: http://www.w3.org/People/Ivan/
>>> mobile: +31-641044153
>>> ORCID ID: http://orcid.org/0000-0003-0782-2704
>Ivan Herman, W3C
>Digital Publishing Lead
>Home: http://www.w3.org/People/Ivan/
>mobile: +31-641044153
>ORCID ID: http://orcid.org/0000-0003-0782-2704
Received on Friday, 4 September 2015 15:42:22 UTC

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