Re: ISSUE-27: rel-ownership - Chairs Solicit Proposals

Roy T. Fielding, Tue, 29 Dec 2009 19:20:13 -0800:
> On Dec 29, 2009, at 3:35 PM, Leif Halvard Silli wrote:
>> Hi Mark,
>> When you, Roy or anyone else makes bold claims about "confusion" about 
>> what HTML 4 says, then it would be extremely helpful if you could 
>> provide an exegesis that that demonstrate those claims.
>> I followed your pointer to Roy's message - and what did I see? I saw 
>> hat Roy has not read HTML 4 correctly. HTML 4 says _exactly_ what Roy 
>> says, namely: Links are not reversible. But relationships are. (That 
>> relationships are reversible doesn't mean that the _words_ for those 
>> relationships are reversible - @rev doesn't create antonyms ... of 
>> course.)
> I doubt that your reinterpretation and rephrasing of what HTML4
> says is going to enlighten my interpretation of what the spec
> actually has written.  I know what rel and rev does in reality,
> and that agrees with your [2].

I perceived Mark to say that there were differenced between your 
understanding of reality and my understanding of HTML 4. I am glad that 
you confirm your understanding of reality and my understanding of HTML 
4 are equal.

>  What I disagreed with is the
> specific words used to define that reality in HTML4, which
> has been misinterpreted by *other* spec writers to mean
> that the link is reversed (not the semantics), and hence the
> discussion about it in the Link draft.

Sure, the wording in HTML 4 is suboptimal and easy to misinterpret. But 
it is still possible to make sense of it, if there is will.

>> I have provided an exegesis of what HTML 4 says which demonstrates that 
>> this is so [1][2]. I produced it without knowing about Roy's message - 
>> I came to this conclusion _solely_ by reading HTML 4.
>> It is indeed true, also, that HTML 4 could have used a clearer wording. 
>> But if one reads HTML 4 the same way that HTML 5 says one should read 
>> HTML 5 [3], then it ought to be pretty obvious that there is no other 
>> possible interpretation of HTML 4 than the one Roy have. In other 
>> words: HTML 4 is says the same that previous specifications has said.
>> If you or anyone have another interpretation of HTML 4, then please 
>> provide something that makes your interpretation credible. Or else we 
>> should put those claims aside as unfounded.
> Why is that even remotely relevant?  The claims exist whether or not
> they can be demonstrated false.  Moreover, you just replied to someone
> who claimed the exact opposite of your interpretation of the very
> same words, so clearly someone is confused.

HTML 4 is blamed from all corners for being unclear. It is relevant to 
have an as exact as possible interpretation of HTML 4. The FUD about 
the quality of HTML 4 is used to remove @rev from HTML 5 _and_ from the 
LINKS draft. 

> HTML5 says under hyperlink
>    For <a> and <area> elements that represent hyperlinks, the
>    relationship between the document containing the hyperlink
>    and the destination resource indicated by the hyperlink is
>    given by the value of the element's rel attribute, which
>    must be a set of space-separated tokens. The allowed values
>    and their meanings are defined below. The rel attribute has
>    no default value. If the attribute is omitted or if none of
>    the values in the attribute are recognized by the user agent,
>    then the document has no particular relationship with the
>    destination resource other than there being a hyperlink
>    between the two.
> and something different under link.  Neither can be interpreted
> with any sense of conviction because "resource" is used in several
> contradictory ways in the spec, as is "default" and "context"
> (presumably in this case because Ian decided to remove the notion
> of an anchor as a conceptual framework for describing links).

The "resource" issue is, I guess, linked to this subject. But I think 
you have a far more important point when you mention the failure of the 
HTML 5 draft to talk about "anchor". The so called unclear HTML 4 
starts its links chapter by explaining how the anchors (the source 
anchor and the destination anchor) sets the links direction. And 
nowhere does HTML 4 claim that what is source and what is destination 
(= direction) changes just because you apply the @rev attribute.

> In any case, rev is gone from HTML5, and therefore the description
> of its semantics is no longer in the draft.

It is part of HTML 5 in the form of the HTML+RDFa draft.

> I think the issue in the subject is solely about who owns the
> relation registry.  Since the relations must be independent of
> media type, I think it is obvious that HTML cannot own the
> registry.  YMMV.

I'm sorry if you feel that this should have been discussed under 
another subject.

>> [1]
>> [2]
>> [3] 
> BTW, [3] is lame, even if read as a sarcastic joke.

Of course. But, still, HTML 4 makes much more sense when that reading 
method is applied.
leif halvard silli

Received on Saturday, 9 January 2010 22:34:45 UTC