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Re: FAQ on joining the HTML WG as an Invited Expert

From: David Dailey <david.dailey@sru.edu>
Date: Tue, 24 Apr 2007 13:43:20 -0400
Message-Id: <>
To: Dan Connolly <connolly@w3.org>,public-html@w3.org

Thanks to Dan, and to all involved. I'm certain this will be useful.

And should the W3C ever dig itself out from under the various 
byproducts of this particular working group and be so brave as to 
have so open a process again in the future, then this and similar 
efforts will continue to pay off, I suspect.

The public relations initiatives not only within the group, but as 
the recommendation matures retain and perhaps gain importance.

The charter calls for
    * User community and industry adoption of the group deliverables.
That involves, I assume, making the material accessible to the broad 
spectrum of users.

That involves, I hope,  a certain amount of digesting this content so 
that we "spec-challenged" folks can make sense of it. The sorts of 
things mentioned in your 
(Dan's)  http://esw.w3.org/topic/HtmlTaskBrainstorm are very 
important toward that end, as you argued in 

I would be willing to help those working on tutorials, 
quick-references, or course materials by proof-reading or testing, or 
something. (currently this includes Debi Orton, Brad Fults, and 
Henrik Dvergsdal.)

But, there are a variety of allied things that could add to progress 
in the future:

1. usability studies (e.g. as discussed at 
What stakeholders are there in the HTML world and what are their needs?
2. orientation for newcomers -- the upcoming workshop teleconference 
is a great step, but a conventions and customs sort of document 
addressing guidelines on posting, etc.(e.g., 
http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/www-archive/2007Apr/0038.html )
3. protocol analysis -- as the testimony of all these interests 
evolves into a rich corpus (more than 2000 messages in less than two 
months) a couple of things seem natural to extract from that corpus:
3a. issue tracking and clustering -- for example the issue of 
enhancements to the <table> object have come up in at least six 
separate occurrences -- only some of those suggestions seem to be 
handled by the WHATWG datagrid or datalist elements. SVN + trac ? 
(http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/public-html/2007Apr/1214.html) I 
think this deals more with the issues once that have been identified. 
If we approach this differently (like as an analysis of customer 
specifications) then "content analysis" might be more appropriate, 
since it would help in the identification and labeling of issues. 
I'll have more to say on this issue later in the appropriate thread.
3b. Descriptive rather than prescriptive analysis of "design 
principles." Every so often in these 2000 messages someone offers 
some piece of wisdom about what we should be doing -- how we should 
be approaching the task at hand. As a very recent example 
Dmitry Turin wrote "To my mind, usability has priority over theory." 
I would submit that there have actually been hundreds of such 
principles put forth since the WG began and that a useful exercise, 
at least for future WG's would be to anaylze just what the real world 
design principles of active participants. This would be a far more 
objective approach to the construction of design principles.
4. Implications for future collaboration. The discussions in early 
March about IRC and e-mail lists were interesting. Just what sort of 
software would best facilitate the tasks our group is working on? 
I've been fairly happy with the tools that W3C has made available, 
but it seems that for an enterprise of this magnitude, the scaling of 
those tools has been a bit ragged in spots. Software which enables 
cross-message ontology tracking, real time issue tabulation with 
possible straw-polls, user-initiated concern-opening and closing, 
visual threading and graph theoretic proximities, etc. is the sort of 
stuff that seems appropriate for the task at hand. Now I understand 
that from a chair's perspective, the obligation to address all 
"issues" means that one would not want each expressed opinion or 
concern to require a formal response, so the whole issue of what is 
an "issue" might involve some new nomenclature. But in the long run, 
I think giving a certain amount of editorial independence to the 
group's contributors (a probably outgrowth of such collaborative 
software) would help the chairs, the editors, and the issue trackers 
in the long run.

David Dailey
At 10:21 AM 4/24/2007, Dan Connolly wrote:

>A number of people have asked questions about why joining
>this group is more complicated than normal mailing list
>subscription; e.g.
>   I want to participate as an individual in the HTML Working Group but
>   I work for a W3C Member. Why can't I join as an Invited Expert?
>   Why did you create public-html for the new Working Group, in
>   addition to the existing www-html@w3.org?
>After answering these questions individually a number of times,
>Ian Jacobs of the W3C communications team assembled an FAQ,
>in collaboration with Karl and me and several others:
>    http://www.w3.org/2007/04/html-ie-faq
>If you want to discuss this by phone, please use the comment
>field in the survey under "Supplemental Orientation Discussion"
>   http://www.w3.org/2002/09/wbs/40318/tel26Apr/
>Dan Connolly, W3C http://www.w3.org/People/Connolly/
>D3C2 887B 0F92 6005 C541  0875 0F91 96DE 6E52 C29E
Received on Tuesday, 24 April 2007 17:43:28 UTC

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