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Re: Proposed split of the HTML specification

From: Robin Berjon <robin@w3.org>
Date: Mon, 15 Jun 2015 11:04:42 +0200
Message-ID: <557E952A.3070501@w3.org>
To: Sam Ruby <rubys@intertwingly.net>, public-html@w3.org
On 11/06/2015 15:15 , Sam Ruby wrote:
> Two things I noticed after a spot check:
> "HTML Best Practices" contains normative specification text that
> probably belongs elsewhere.

Which part? Note that some of it is written in a normative style but 
applies to validators. Validators fall under "best practices" in my book 
(which I know isn't everyone's POV).

> "HTML Requirements Relating to the Bidirectional Algorithm" the title of
> this document

Yup, fixed that. This one probably deserves another home.

> Overall questions:
> 1) do you see the "breakup" tool as something that -- after the
> experimentation and discussion dies down -- is used once and discarded,
> or is part of the publishing pipeline?

My hope is that people can take ownership of bits they like. So the idea 
is definitely to throw away the tool. I made it a tool rather than just 
a split so that people could easily propose alternatives, but not as 
something that will stay with us.

> 2) A split such as this calls out for the need for multiple indexes (in
> the computer science use of this term).

Yes, definitely. Thankfully they're pretty easy to produce.

> 2a) I see a need for an overall table of contents indicating the
> complete set of relevant specifications.  We've talked about this
> before, but any ideas we may have explored probably need revisiting,
> particularly as different specs may be owned by different groups (or
> even different standards organizations).  As you know, one of my
> favorite examples is the URL object: something that was once part of
> HTML, but not doesn't currently appear to have any traction in the W3C.
>   It is still needed.

A global entry point into the specs would be great, but I have never 
been convinced that it would be most useful if it just included what 
is/was in HTML5. I'd like a ToC of all the relevant specs, ideally with 
index tables for all interfaces, elements, and the such.

It's a little bit of work, but I don't think it's really hard to make.

> 2b) In addition to a table of contents, I now see a need for an index
> (I'm using this term in the sense that you find in the back of many text
> books).  As an example, where would you find requirements (normative or
> informative) related to the <nav> element?  It didn't seem obvious to me
> to look in the "Sections in HTML" document for this, but that would be
> OK if there were an index that could be readily determined.

Yes, exactly. Short of going for one spec per element or one spec with 
everything there is no logical cut that will make it obvious for people 
to find anything. And the best titles in the world still won't help 

Note that we have some indices in 
http://darobin.github.io/breakup/specs/html/. They properly point into 
other specs as need be. But we need more/better.

Robin Berjon - http://berjon.com/ - @robinberjon
Received on Monday, 15 June 2015 09:04:46 UTC

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