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Re: Decision Point on XForms 1.2

From: Ulrich Nicolas Lissť <unl@dreamlab.net>
Date: Fri, 15 Feb 2008 20:38:01 +0100
Message-ID: <47B5EA19.7050306@dreamlab.net>
To: John Boyer <boyerj@ca.ibm.com>
CC: "Forms WG (new)" <public-forms@w3.org>

John Boyer wrote:
> Further to our telecon discussion about how to decide what's in or out 
> of XForms 1.2, there is a decision to be made here.
> Right now, I think XForms 1.2 is too big compared to what was really 
> mandated by our charter.  This is one reason I put all remaining 
> "possible 1.2 or high 2.0 features" into 2.0.  But it doesn't seem like 
> that goes far enough.  I have a proposal below to cut scope for 1.2, but 
> first let's review what's currently listed.

Agreed. Even when starting to discuss model driven switch I got the 
feeling that we make things more complicated instead of easier. The 
current feature list for XForms 1.2 is rather bloated. I fear we would 
fail to deliver a spec that matches the original intent.

> The features currently listed for 1.2 in the wiki
> 1) ease-of-authoring patterns that are consistent with the expectations 
> set forth in our charter.  As a side note, we have *lots* of other ease 
> of authoring ideas, some are listed in 2.0 (like) AVTs and some have 
> crept up into 1.2 (like the repeat pattern).   But none of these go into 
> the bucket we are calling "ease of authoring" patterns because this 
> bucket is targeted at the "transitional" XForms on-ramp concept in our 
> charter for 1.2.  We need a better name than the one we have, but I 
> think it will be used to describe the overall release if the proposal 
> below is acceptable.
> 2) User interface patterns.  A number of these seek to to capture what 
> people are doing with sets of our form controls that interact together 
> toward a common purpose. But some (like the wizard pattern), I think we 
> do not know well enough to codify something useful, and it will take too 
> long for 1.2 to figure it out.
> 3) Composition patterns.  This has exciting stuff like nested models and 
> external models.  It also has stuff which could be looked at as being 
> other than composition, like the function definitions.
> 4) Modularization. This work seems inevitable in order to do the 
> "simplification"/"transitional"/"on-ramp" work.
> PROPOSAL: I propose that we drop the 'patterns' theme for XForms 1.2 and 
> instead focus on the core charter mandate.  I don't have a great name 
> for it yet, and I could use some help in this area.  But it's something 
> more like "XForms 1.2: Streamlined for Web Application Authors" .

Yes, we should drop the patterns theme. As expressed at the FtF I feel a 
bit uncomfortable about this language. The term pattern always causes me 
to think of Design Patterns.

Regarding the new theme: What about shortening it to "XForms 1.2: 
Streamlining Web Applications"?

> Details:
> i) I don't think we need three subthemes.


> ii) I think everything in our current "ease-of-authoring" bucket fits 
> into this new theme.


> iii) I think we have to do the switch/using construct because it is a 
> bug fix to the language, and we still need to do some of those.  But the 
> other "UI patterns" should be pushed off to 2.0 or later.

Well, I think the switch/using construct has to be discussed a little 
further. And I think we should include "Default trigger" in 1.2. The 
other UI patterns should be deferred.

> iv) I think that the "custom XPath functions" fits this theme, in part 
> because the XPath function implementations could be provided by 
> Javascript.  But otherwise, the composition patterns really need to be 
> deferred to 2.0 (as much as it pains me to say that).

+1 except for dropping external models. I would like to see model/@src 
in 1.2.

> v) We really need to modularize what we have so that it can be made 
> incrementally available to authors.  It fits the theme perfectly and 
> will streamline our ability to add more to XForms in the future.

+INF :)


> Please consider this carefully and provide your feedback as soon as 
> possible, esp. those who sent regrets for next week's call.  We need 
> your feedback this week if at all possible.
> Thanks,
> John M. Boyer, Ph.D.
> Senior Technical Staff Member
> Lotus Forms Architect and Researcher
> Chair, W3C Forms Working Group
> Workplace, Portal and Collaboration Software
> IBM Victoria Software Lab
> E-Mail: boyerj@ca.ibm.com  
> Blog: http://www.ibm.com/developerworks/blogs/page/JohnBoyer
> Blog RSS feed: 
> http://www.ibm.com/developerworks/blogs/rss/JohnBoyer?flavor=rssdw

Ulrich Nicolas Lissť
Received on Friday, 15 February 2008 19:38:29 UTC

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