standard terms [was: Re: Trial A]

At 10:27 PM 2000-08-25 -0400, Ian Jacobs wrote:
>In the UAWG we are still working on some of these issues. However,
>we've spent a ton of time on what "content" means and I would urge
>you not to assign meaning to the term other than the document
>object is constituted of content. 


This may be one of those cases where one glossary entry does not suffice
for all the things that the WAI does.  

The question of jargon uniformity came up in the coordination group, where
Harvey's efforts at constructing a common lexicon were lauded, but we so
far lack a volunteer Working Group to manage and put the effort into the
maintenance of the module.

At that point I argued that WCA should not have un-hindered license to do
whatever they want in the way of coining jargon, independent of the usage
in peer documents and groups.  On the other hand, the fact that a term has
been defined one way in one Recommendation should not mean that it has to
be used that way by all later documents.  Just that the difference has to
be defensible.

In this particular case, I think that a difference in the default slant of
'content' is something that goes with the difference in charter between WCA
and UA.

The content guidelines and the user agent guidelines do each approach the
overall web scenario from a slightly different angle.  The work in web
content should properly take a "genre analysis" perspective which deals
more with the markup as an extension and reinforcement of rhetorical
structures visible in the non-markup content of the page.  The user agent
does not have much recourse to information about the sense or structure of
the content other than what is indicated in the markup.  The author does.
Hence the content guidelines [and ER tools and AU tools] address the
relationship between the formal knowledge about the markup and the author
knowledge about the content marked.  To a degree the UA guidelines cannot.
So the content guidelines deal systematically with the natural
interpretation of the sense of the content in a way that the user agent
guidelines do not, and it is natural for the default sense of 'content' to
be somewhat different in the two volumes.


Received on Saturday, 26 August 2000 13:59:29 UTC