W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-qa@w3.org > May 2002

Re: Testable assertion tagging for W3C specifications

From: Dimitris Dimitriadis <dimitris@ontologicon.com>
Date: Mon, 27 May 2002 20:23:19 +0200
Cc: www-qa@w3.org
To: Alex Rousskov <rousskov@measurement-factory.com>
Message-Id: <D1AA7088-719E-11D6-8D6D-000393556882@ontologicon.com>
comments inlined

On Monday, May 27, 2002, at 06:56 PM, Alex Rousskov wrote:

> On Mon, 27 May 2002, Dimitris Dimitriadis wrote:
>>> GOALS:
>>>  Allow an external document (test case, erratum, email, etc.) to 
>>> point
>>>  directly at a "testable" normative sentence in a Recommendation.
>>> [dd] This would clearly simplify the task of, if we look at tests,
>>> knowing which part in particualr is being tested, but requires
>>> structure and issues tracking. This in turn implies that it may need 
>>> to
>>> be an intra-W3C "standard".
>> [dd] The "standard" I mention here would be the testable assertion
>> markup we've discussed and the linking technique (pointing to a 
>> testable
>> assertion from a part of the actual test, say).
>> From technical point of view, "pointing to normative sentence in a
> Recommendation" does not imply a need for structure or W3C
> documentation standard. An external document can point to normative
> sentences using a variety of already available techniques, which will
> depend on the format of the Recommendation and on the test tool
> preferences.
[dd] You're right, it doesn't necessarily imply that. However, given the 
possible migration to a common markup for specifications being discussed 
here, it may seem to be a positive spinoff to have a uniform linking 
mechanism, especially considering that there are tendencies to try to 
streamline the test suites being produced. Pointing to a spec can of 
course be done in a variety of ways, but the question I raise is whether 
it is desirable to make the W3C-produced test related efforts do it in 
similar ways.

> In the extreme case, one can use byte offsets and a simple rendering
> engine to highlight relevant citations. In many cases, approaches like
> XPath/XPointer could be used. Also, linking using short quotes (rather
> than some sort of addresses) can simplify maintaining the index across
> Recommendation changes.
> Yes, having a one-for-all standard will simplify linking and tracking
> document updates until the document becomes stable. However, it is not
> clear to me whether these somewhat temporary advantages outweigh the
> drawbacks of one-size-fits-all approach and introduction of yet
> another standard.
[dd] It's not clear to me either. We'll have to discuss it a few rounds 
here and try to map advantages/disadvantages.

0.02 (did the euro sign show up?)


> $0.02,
> Alex.
Received on Monday, 27 May 2002 14:23:23 UTC

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