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   RE: [xml-dev] a standards story

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On Fri, 2002-05-17 at 11:58, Bullard, Claude L (Len) wrote:
> I thought that was why Tim Bray was named the TAG's Ear On XML-Dev.
> I can't imagine that the WGs are not aware of the controversies 
> specs produce outside the W3C. The problem is, at what point does 
> the check and balance become affective?  When are public comments 
> invited?

Comments are typically invited with every draft.

> What is the process for handling them?

Comments must (in theory at least) be answered before the spec becomes a
Recommendation.  There is no requirement for how they must be answered,
of course.

>  How far back 
> will a spec be rolled given these?   Is it not possible that 
> given a "reliable ear", the Director or the TAG or both, 
> can send the work back to the WG?

There's been serious resistance to the TAG having such a role.  The
quotes following are all from TAG members, though the contexts vary - I
strongly encourage reading the original messages and surrounding

Here's a blast from David Orchard:
The TAG should do it's job of making architectural recommendations and
documenting web principles.  The TAG should not and does not have
oversight over the chartering of activities and working groups.  There
is a difference between power over architecture and influence over
charters.  The TAG does need to discuss the impacts of it's works - what
we're doing here - but not so far as to drag an Activity out of it's
home at the W3C.  

A friendly but clear statement from Stuart Williams that the TAG should
yield to WGs:
I also think that the TAG should focus on the articulation of Web
Architecture and arhitectural principles. I think we can help WG's like
XMLP in resolving issues of Web Architecture, *but* IMO the WG itself
must be allowed to own the problem and to take responsibility for its

Here's questioning from Tim Bray on TAG and community consensus:
It is not the TAG's role to ascertain what 
the consensus of the community is.  The TAG's role is to write down how 
the web architecture actually works and to do whatever possible to 
ensure that standards and tools avoid breaking it.

Roy Fielding seems willing to consider such a role, though:
If we are to remain silent on this issue, then the W3C should not exist.

The Advisory Committee also plays a role.

Simon St.Laurent
Ring around the content, a pocket full of brackets
Errors, errors, all fall down!


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