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Process for proposals

From: Sam Ruby <rubys@intertwingly.net>
Date: Wed, 20 May 2009 06:46:59 -0400
Message-ID: <4A13DFA3.9010401@intertwingly.net>
To: HTML WG <public-html@w3.org>
There seems to be an undue fascination with what is, and what is not, 
included in Ian's draft at any particular moment in time.

First, despite the name of the role that both the WHATWG and the W3C has 
given to Ian, my observation is that Ian is first and foremost an 
author, not an editor.  Editors supervise, assemble, correct, revise, 
and adapt material from a number of sources.  The document that Ian has 
been authoring is, instead, essentially an original work.

Given that multiple people have participated in the development of this 
work (through bug reports, suggestion of use cases, etc.) the HTML WG 
has recognized this document as meeting the criteria to be a Working 
Draft of this Working Group.  This status is not likely to change.  This 
despite the fact that, at various points in times, this document has 
contained a number of sections which were later split out.

If others do likewise, the documents they produce will also be so 
recognized -- this is particularly true for any for documents with 
little or no overlap with other WG documents, though documents with 
overlap may also end up meeting the criteria for FPWD, it's just that we 
will be more careful in how we assess consensus on such documents.

If no other authors emerge, then there will be no need for a separate 
"editor" to assemble, correct, revise, and adapt material from various 
sources.  We specifically need people to put forward suggestions for 
@profile and @summary.  If no such proposals are produced, such issues 
will be summarily closed.

As to what such a future would look like, here is a rough sketch:

1) The biggest outstanding issue on the document isn't consensus, but 
agreement on a suitable license.

2) The content in the document that does not have unresolved overlap and 
contradictions with existing specifications will likely be recognized as 
having consensus.  This could very well include sections on microdata 
and origin.  Those that feel otherwise would be served by raising 
issues[1] well before Last Call.

3) The issue about what the document itself is named (raised by Roy 
Fielding[2]) is also something that needs to be resolved.  This issue 
primarily affects the title page and little else.

Ian's stated intent is to be ready for Last Call by October.  My intent 
is to assess consensus within the working group and to make every effort 
to "satisfy significant dependencies with other groups" (e.g., deal with 
the accessibility of canvas) prior to Last Call.  At the present time, I 
see no reason that all of the above can't be met by this winter.

- Sam Ruby

[1] http://www.w3.org/html/wg/tracker/
[2] http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/public-html/2007Nov/0430.html
Received on Wednesday, 20 May 2009 10:47:40 UTC

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