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Re: biased surveys and other tricks

From: Lachlan Hunt <lachlan.hunt@lachy.id.au>
Date: Wed, 28 Jan 2009 17:29:49 +0100
Message-ID: <498087FD.6010005@lachy.id.au>
To: Larry Masinter <masinter@adobe.com>
Cc: HTML WG <public-html@w3.org>

Larry Masinter wrote:
>> Is HTML5 mark up spec http://shrinkster.com/13zy useful compared to
>> the fullblown spec http://shrinkster.com/13zz use #html5ml in reply
> The survey is biased, because it is asking individuals without
> context to compare the utility of an initial draft of a document,
> against one document that has been under preparation for years,
> and implies that only the former would be produced rather than
> both.
> If you were going to do a survey, you might ask something like:
> "Would you like the opportunity to review the utility of a
> having a mark up spec (initial draft http://shrinkster.com/13zy )
> as a separate document from a fullblown specification 
> such as  http://shrinkster.com/13zz.

Even that's not great, because it fails to mention the alternatives that 
exist explicitly for web developers  Namely, the authoring guides that 
DanC and I are working on.  It even fails to point out which specific 
sections of the spec are intended for them.  And if Mike's draft is 
going to be positioned as a document targeted at web developers, then 
it's important that the those being asked are aware of what else is 
available, rather than have it being presented as an either-or choice 
between just the two of them.

Indeed, I'm sure there are a lot of web developers who find the full 
spec intimidating (probably to a large extent due to its size, rather 
than the way it's written), and in comparison with that alone may prefer 
a document that just dealt with the markup language, like Mike's draft. 
  But in this context, that's comparing apples and oranges, since the 
full spec is known to known not to be optimised for the average author. 
  Whereas the authoring guides are designed to be optimised for them

In light of this, I resonded on WSG to give some background about the 
documents that are being produced.  Hopefully this will help us obtain 
more useful information.


Lachlan Hunt - Opera Software
Received on Wednesday, 28 January 2009 16:30:28 UTC

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