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Re: conformance to "software MUST NOT assume" measurable?

From: Dan Connolly <connolly@w3.org>
Date: Sat, 20 Mar 2004 20:38:28 -0600
To: Martin Duerst <duerst@w3.org>
Cc: www-i18n-comments@w3.org, Dominique Hazael-Massieux <dom@w3.org>, w3c-i18n-ig@w3.org
Message-Id: <1079836708.2465.762.camel@dirk>

On Sat, 2004-03-20 at 14:26, Martin Duerst wrote:
> Hello Dan,
> This is a personal answer to your comment. I'm copying Dominique,
> who has supported your comment, and the I18N IG, for discussion.
> At 08:27 04/03/19 +0900, Dan Connolly wrote:
> >This is a last call comment from Dan Connolly (connolly@w3.org) on
> >the Character Model for the World Wide Web 1.0
> >(http://www.w3.org/TR/2002/WD-charmod-20020430/).
> >
> >Semi-structured version of the comment:
> >
> >Submitted by: Dan Connolly (connolly@w3.org)
> >Submitted on behalf of (maybe empty):
> >Comment type: substantive
> >Chapter/section the comment applies to: 3.2 Units of aural rendering
> >The comment will be visible to: public
> >Comment title: conformance to "software MUST NOT assume" measurable?
> >Comment:
> >Regarding:
> >
> >C001   [S]  [I]  [C]  Specifications, software and content MUST NOT assume 
> >that there is a one-to-one correspondence between characters and the 
> >sounds of a language.
> >
> >How does one test/measure/observe/demonstrate that? Would you please
> >point me at a test case?
> >
> >I think it's fine to write:
> >
> >   Take care not to assume a one-to-one correspondence between
> >   characters and sounds of a language.
> >
> >followed by the examples you give,
> >but I don't see how making this a conformance clause is helpful.
> >
> >This applies to C002 and C003 as well.
> I'm not sure why C003 ([S]  [I]  [C]  Protocols, data formats and
> APIs MUST store, interchange or process text data in logical order.)
> ended up in here; it's definitely extremely observable, for protocols
> for example by sending some Arabic or Hebrew over the protocol and
> using a hex dump to check that the characters indeed come in the
> right order. Can you explain why you lumped it in together with
> the others?

I don't see how you can (nor why you want to) observe how things
are stored nor processed inside a program. Yes, exchange is clear.

> C001 and C002 ([S]  [I]  [C]  Specifications, software and content MUST NOT
> assume a one-to-one mapping between characters and units of displayed text.)
> are indeed of a very similar nature, and it makes sense to discuss
> them together.
> With respect to conformance, it is important to remind ourselves that
> all these criteria are predicated by the definitions in Section 2,
> such as (simplified):
>    A specification conforms to this document if it does not violate
>      any conformance criteria preceded by [S],
> (and similar for implementations and content).
> That means that for specifications, software, or content that do not
> deal with aural rendering or recognition (C001) or visual rendering
> or recognition (C002), the respective criteria are simply not
> applicable.
> And if you look at technology that indeed deals with aural rendering
> (e.g. SSML) or visual rendering (e.g. SVG),..., you will be able to
> verify (by reading the spec, and testing whether the implementations
> conform to the spec,...) that indeed the don't make such assumptions.

What about verifying software that doesn't correspond to such
a spec?

> As an example, in SSML, the <phoneme> element works on strings
> (words,...), not characters (see
> http://www.w3.org/TR/2003/CR-speech-synthesis-20031218/#S3.1.9).
> As another example, <altglyh> in SVG allows to define alternative
> renderings for groups of characters, not only for single characters.
> So these criteria are very definitely observable.

I'm still not so sure.

But I don't think this is any sort of fatal flaw in the spec.
I just think it's odd to make conformance clauses that come
down to human judgement.

In short, I'm satisfied with your response to this comment.
If I were writing the document, I might do it differently.
But I'm not writing it, so I'll leave it to the judgement
of the folks that are.

>  Of course, because
> of the architectural level of the spec, it's not as easy as just
> creating a test case.
> Regards,    Martin.
Dan Connolly, W3C http://www.w3.org/People/Connolly/
see you at the WWW2004 in NY 17-22 May?
Received on Saturday, 20 March 2004 21:38:26 UTC

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