Proposed Additions/Modifications to XHTML 2 Edit Collection

One of Tim Berners-Lee's original visions for the Web was one in which 
the content could be interactively edited.  If such changes were made 
immediately available, it would be a site administrator's nightmare.  
However, there are many projects that collaborate online and would 
benefit from such a feature.  For these reasons, I have some suggestions 
for the Edit Collection of attributes for XHTML 2:

    * The "moved" value for the edit attribute should be removed.  Moved
      content is no more than removing the original content and adding
      it in its original location.  It is also difficult to communicate
      where content has been moved.
    * The "changed" attribute should be removed as a change message
      gives no context of what has been changed.
    * There should be a boolean attribute named "editable" that marks
      content that may be edited.
    * There should be a "changeserver" attribute that defines a URI
      where changes may be posted.  The URI is up to the original page
      author.  An example use might be:
         1. There is a section like the <span editable="editable"
         2. A user sees that "Suggeston" is misspelled and corrects it.
         3. When the user navigates away from the page, a message is
            sent to that e-mail address.

From: user@some.server
Subject: Change Request

Source URI: http://www.some.server/
<span edit="deleted" date="(today)">Suggeston</span>
<span edit="inserted" date="(today)">Suggestion</span>

    * I recommend that these editions, if accepted by the respective
      site owners, be saved in a publically-available file linked via
      the link element.  This is not a requirement, but it would cut
      down on the number of non-current markup in a page.

The advantages of this system over a system such as CVS include the 

    * It is native to XHTML.
    * It is structure-oriented, not line-oriented.
    * It gives control to the site administrator while still allowing
      changes.  The administrator can then automate the changes or
      handle them manually at his or her discretion.

I think this proposal still needs tweaked, but a good specification for 
it would bring the Web closer to being a medium for interactive edition 
in a way that is easier for site administrators.

Brant Langer Gurganus

Version: 3.1
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Received on Sunday, 4 May 2003 09:02:25 UTC