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Re: Design Principles

From: Leif Halvard Silli <lhs@malform.no>
Date: Mon, 25 May 2009 16:38:09 +0200
Message-ID: <4A1AAD51.5000301@malform.no>
To: Anne van Kesteren <annevk@opera.com>
CC: HTML WG <public-html@w3.org>
Anne van Kesteren On 09-05-25 14.55:
> On Mon, 25 May 2009 14:29:32 +0200, Leif Halvard Silli <lhs@malform.no> wrote:
>> Anne van Kesteren On 09-05-24 22.37:
>> No one will subscribe to reasonable principles if, in reality, they are  
>> (honestly, of course)  interpreted to legitimize things that one are  
>> opposed to, disagree with and, in fact, not found in the principles. I  
>> think Larry (and Dan also, if I understood the IRC log of the telcon  
>> correctly) has pointed to a problem with the /interpretation/ of the  
>> principles. "Pave the cow paths" has been interpreted to say "do not  
>> pave anything that perhaps isn't a cow path".
> As has been pointed out, that interpretation is incorrect.

So perhaps that principle should be augmented by a clause that says so?

>  More interesting would be examples were the design principles have not been followed. 

That would also be interesting, of course.

> Larry suggested on IRC yesterday that the Origin header may be such an example. I haven't entirely thought that through yet but did note that Origin came from somewhere else.

Actually, it is difficult to say if the cow path principle has been 
followed or not as it only says that cow paths should be /considered/.

>>> They make it clear you think that the "removal" of the profile  
>>> attribute on the head element is not supported by the design  
>>> principles, but other than that there's nothing concrete there as far  
>>> as I can tell.
>> You put "removal" in quotes because you are unwilling to admit that  
>> @profile has been removed. Of course there a problems with the design  
>> principles when we can't even agree what we are starting from.  But  
>> perhaps you disagree with them and want the "from scratch" principle  
>> added? Insisting one's own interpretation in every little detail usually  
>> isn't fruitful.  (Plus that those that insist on "from scratch" have not  
>> started completely from scratch. Just as those that insist on continuity  
>> are not unable to see things "from scratch".)
> With HTML5 we did not start from HTML4. We did end up with something that resembles HTML4 in a lot of ways (at least in terms of feature set). If we follow the new Recommendation path set out by the W3C properly (i.e. ensure multiple interoperable implementations) I do not think we need to do the same for HTML6 although evaluating features is of course always good.

So "we" as in "we the WHATwg" removed @profile from our own draft. "We" 
as in "we the HTMLwg" therefore considers that it has been removed. We 
cannot remove anything from HTML 4, unless we start to edit HTML 4. If 
HTML 5 ends up without @profile, then we have removed @profile from 
text/html (except for XHTML served as text/html). The argument that you 
did not remove it because you did not add it, is not interesting the day 
someone wants to use HTML 5 _and_  @profile.

What you insist on is a process thing or a way of thinking: "we the 
WHATwg" wanted to look at HTML with fresh eyes and we claim to have done 
what we set forth doing. You think that by following this methodology 
you, the WHATwg, followed the ideal method for finding out "how HTML 
needs to evolve", as you put it below. Others might not agree that  this 
was the best or only way to find out how HTML needs to evolve. 
Personally, I even find it a naïve methodology. It might work as a 
"working morale" but I find it naïve to use it to convince others about 
anything else but your working morale. There is no method for evaluating 
whether that  principle has been followed or not. It is, in the end, an 
extremely theoretical point of view.

This working group has no agreement about looking at HTML as if HTML 4 
never existed. In fact, we disagree all the time about what weight to 
put on the fact that something exists in HTML 4. And in reality it is 
not the whether something existed or not in HTML 4 that has ended up 
being a problem, but whether WHATwg at some point has added or removed 
something to/from HTML 5 or not.

>> I agree with Sam that we have an editor works more as an author than as  
>> an editor. Is this in the design principles? Is Ian's words about how  
>> this group will not ever be consensus based as long has he is editor in  
>> the principles?
> That seems more about process than how HTML needs to evolve.

The cow path principle is quite process oriented: "consider cow paths".
leif halvard silli
Received on Monday, 25 May 2009 14:38:50 UTC

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