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Re: Request for editing guidance

From: Laura Carlson <laura.lee.carlson@gmail.com>
Date: Fri, 11 Jun 2010 05:59:34 -0500
Message-ID: <AANLkTil59WC9pJ53e-6NbwJ7c5kI3N0GZXDdSNtgnh-y@mail.gmail.com>
To: Tantek Çelik <tantek@cs.stanford.edu>
Cc: "Edward O'Connor" <hober0@gmail.com>, Ian Hickson <ian@hixie.ch>, Sam Ruby <rubys@intertwingly.net>, public-html@w3.org
Hi Tantek,

> By no means am I saying that the design principles are perfect.
> I think there's numerous ways they could be improved and in fact I
> agree with many (most) of the constructive suggestions for edits that
> you yourself recommended in the comments sections.
> There's enough good suggestions there that I think a good incremental
> update to the document is possible, even if it doesn't address all the
> comments/objections, and that would be a good step forward.

There has been no meeting of the minds on the content of the design
principles [1] [2] [3]. The principles have mainly been used as a
HTML5 marketing tool [3] [4] [5]. They are so broad that they can be
interpreted in many ways, so they work well for marketers.

However, attempting to use the principles and adapt them, as HTML5
decision criteria would be difficult. The same principle can be used
to argue both sides of the same point.

Last year I wrote, "Principles that use wishy-washy rhetoric are not
principles at all. They are judgment calls, completely subjective to
the personal opinion of the person invoking the principle or authoring
the spec." To that Ian responded "Welcome to language design." [6]

So I don’t know how they would help with the problem of applying
consistent reasoning. The current principles can be bent any which
way. They are consistently crafted to allow
inconsistency...Deliberately malleable to allow any situation.

If guidelines are to be used to base decision criteria, it might help
if they took a more concrete form. Maybe something like the QA
Specification Guidelines [7]. I don’t know.

A request to strengthen the HTML5 accessibility design principle [9]
[10] also has not been resolved.

Best Regards,

[1] http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/public-html/2009Aug/0066.html
[2] http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/public-html/2009May/0170.html
[3] http://realtech.burningbird.net/web/standards/whatwgs-mine-mine-design-principle-kerfuffle
[3] http://www.alistapart.com/articles/previewofhtml5
[4] http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/www-archive/2007Apr/att-0036/html5.xml
[5] http://lachy.id.au/dev/presentation/developing-with-html5/Developing%20with%20HTML5.ppt
[7] http://www.w3.org/TR/qaframe-spec/specgl-ics
[8] http://www.w3.org/TR/qaframe-spec/
[9] http://www.w3.org/html/wg/wiki/AccessibilityDesignPrinciple
[10] http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/public-html/2009Jun/0661.html
Received on Friday, 11 June 2010 11:00:03 UTC

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