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Re: Level of specification detail (Was Re: Proposal to Adopt HTML5)

From: Dylan Smith <qstage@cox.net>
Date: Thu, 12 Apr 2007 17:18:16 -0700
To: liorean <liorean@gmail.com>, HTML WG <public-html@w3.org>
Message-ID: <C2441A58.2B59%qstage@cox.net>

on 4/12/07 12:58 AM, liorean at liorean@gmail.com wrote:

> On 12/04/07, Maciej Stachowiak <mjs@apple.com> wrote:
>> In my opinion:
>> The spec itself should mainly try to address implementors of user
>> agents (including browsers, search engines, data mining tools, etc),
>> conformance checkers and authoring tools, since these audiences need
>> a significant amount of precision.
>> A simpler guide for authors might be a useful addendum, and of course
>> we definitely want exhaustive test cases.
> I'm fine with the spec mostly addressing implementors, though I think
> there is a strong need for authors to have some kind of official and
> complete guide/reference.
> I really don't want this spec to go the way of ECMA-262 3ed, where the
> specification is practically unusable by the vast majority of coders
> because it ONLY concentrates on implementors and not coders and there
> is no official coder-friendly documentation. The result is a mess of
> tutorial and reference sites that are based on implementations and
> aren't complete and entirely correct and that frequently conflates the
> host environment with the language standard.
> Something like the elements/attributes tables of HTML4.01 is enough,
> it just needs to be there somewhere.

The tag soup out there today was cooked up by authors. The guys in the cube
farms whipping out sites need just as much precision as implementors.
Perhaps not the same level of detailed reasoning, but I wholeheartedly
concur with: 

> there is a strong need for authors to have some kind of official and
> complete guide/reference

Absent some clear guidelines on how to actually use a new spec, it'll be
just as abused as the current model.

-- Dylan Smith
Received on Friday, 13 April 2007 00:15:12 UTC

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