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Re: [xml-dev] Does the W3C allow "reference implementations"?

Surely if there is a proper conformance clause to the spec or standard
then a reference implementation can be overridden by the spec when it
comes to conformance and conformance claims. That is, unless it is
always a given that a reference implementation always takes precedence
over the spec. I think there should just be a rule against ISO including
a role of any reference implementation in a conformance clause or
normative statement and another rule to always include a conformance
clause (a properly constructed/worded one). Then I would see no harm
allowing reference implementations which can be helpful as informative
(non-normative) accessories to explain the spec to the uninitiated. No
matter how well a spec is written there is always room for misinterpretation
(perhaps deliberate/strategic - allegedly). One could even argue that a
normative or non-normative schema published with the standard spec is
part of a reference implementation - or other such artefacts. The same
arguments might apply to these but on the other hand these artefacts
might be appropriately included in a conformance clause.

Best regards

Stephen D Green

On 24 November 2010 13:29, Costello, Roger L. <costello@mitre.org> wrote:
> Hi Folks,
> I just read this:
>    ISO officially does not allow reference implementations
> Here's where I read it:
>    http://www.schematron.com/implementation.html
> See the 2nd sentence of the 2nd paragraph.
> The author of that web page is Rick Jelliffe, who is the author of several ISO standards.
> This got me wondering, "Does the W3C allow reference implementations?"
> I know that the W3C requires a specification have a certain number of implementations before the specification can become a full Recommendation. Does the W3C consider them to be "reference implementations"?
> What is the rationale for not allowing reference implementations?
> /Roger
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