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Re: Request for Decision: Design Principles

From: Maciej Stachowiak <mjs@apple.com>
Date: Wed, 18 Apr 2007 14:17:59 -0700
Message-Id: <0048A22D-A1F6-4501-9A96-7B3FB7E5CA2A@apple.com>
Cc: public-html@w3.org
To: "Dailey, David P." <david.dailey@sru.edu>

On Apr 17, 2007, at 9:48 PM, Dailey, David P. wrote:

> On Tue 4/17/2007 11:46 PM Maciej Stachowiak wrote
>> I'd like to request that the chairs call the question (using whatever
>> decision procedure is appropriate) on the HTML Design Principles set
>> forth by myself and others.
> Representing the very small minority who have written against the  
> design principles (http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/public-html/ 
> 2007Apr/0679.html), (the rest of us naysayers are all very quiet)   
> I mentioned on Monday that I would be making some response to your  
> response Sunday to my original post almost three days earlier. I am  
> not sensing any great support for my perspective so it is probably  
> a non-issue. However, absent the luxury of sufficient time to  
> prepare my response, I will craft a quickie reply.
> I would characterize my objections as persistent, because I  
> perceive no lack of clarity in the charter. (This has been shaken a  
> bit by some recent disputes over its language and implications).  
> You have said you like design principles. I have said I don't.
> If they are to become adopted I would prefer a) that they be  
> renamed as guidelines rather than principles. (They are just too  
> fuzzy and ambiguous in my mind to qualify for the term  
> "principles"). At times people seem to think of them as axioms from  
> which theorems may be proven. They simply aren't.

I can't find an instance of this actually happening. So I think your  
objections, though persistent, are ill-founded. Certainly those who  
contributed to the document realize that nothing is absolute.

> I believe, as per our previous exchange that several "friendly  
> amendments" as you call them could be made to improve the wording,  
> and clarify the meanings. The examples you provided for "degrade  
> gracefully" for example helped me to understand that one. The title  
> of "evolutionnotrevolution" is disputed as well as the last  
> sentence that makes no sense.
> I would have to reread our exchange more thoroughly to see what  
> other friendly amendments it suggests.

If you want specific clarifying changes, please let me know, I'm  
happy to update the document.

> In the meantime -- please mark "don't reinvent the wheel" as disputed.

Actually, now that I've proposed it for a vote, I'd rather not make  
substantive changes of this kind. I'd rather see the proposal carry  
or fail as it stands, and make further changes or improvements later.

Regarding your specific objection:

> I have what I believe is substantive disagreement with that  
> (including my recent note at http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/ 
> public-html/2007Apr/1101.html ) in which alternatives (albeit  
> unpleasant)  for drawing image-like objects  in the browser using  
> javascript are demonstrated, hence showing that <canvas> does  
> something already doable.

<canvas> was implemented in three different browsers prior to going  
in the WHATWG spec. Furthermore, using a separate element for each  
pixel of a bitmap image is certainly not a substitute for an actual  
bitmap, because it can't possibly achieve the same performance  
characteristics and has no way to do things like  stroke a bezier  
path, paint a gradient, paint an image, etc. In principle you could  
tesselate your own bezier curves in JavaScript but this is going to  
result in much worse performance.

On both these grounds, neither the spec nor Apple can be accused of  
duplicating functionality then in browsers.

> Your response to my examples, fails to convince me, and yet to  
> respond in detail, I would need a bit more time before a question  
> is called. I don't like this one at all. If it had been in place  
> when Mosaic was built, we would still have gopher.

If you don't like it (and don't like having principles at all), then  
I think you can vote against. I don't think having an endless debate  
will improve the quality of the group's decision on the matter.

Received on Wednesday, 18 April 2007 21:18:31 UTC

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