[rfc-i] Order of numbered and un-numbered sections in RFCs

Pekka Savola pekkas at netcore.fi
Sat Sep 4 21:14:50 PDT 2004


On Sat, 4 Sep 2004, Martin Duerst wrote:
> >        7a.  Contributors
> >        7b.  Acknowledgments
> >        7c.  Security Considerations   [Required]
> >        7d.  IANA Considerations
> >        7e.  Appendixes
> >        7f.  References
> >       8. Author's Address             [Required]
> >       9. IPR Boilerplate              [Required*]
> 
> I use to think about security considerations and IANA considerations
> as part of the actual spec, which means that in the above point
> 7, they should come first. 

Not sure of that.  To me, IANA & Sec considerations are just formal 
parts of the spec; the spec itself specifies it's approach to security 
in the body of the text, and Security Considerations just summarizes 
or analyses it or the remainder threats.  It should not (IMHO) have 
much normative text.  The same applies to the IANA considerations.  In 
that sense, I think the order listed above is pretty good.

> Having references last is helpful because
> that's the point one goes to most often during reading the rest
> of the doc, but the boilerplate at the end makes this less easy
> than if they were really at the end. If there is an index, it
> should usually come after the references.

I'd put, by default, the appendixes after the references -- if only 
for the sole reason that they're meant to be *appedixes*, clearly 
separated from the body of the document.  Putting them after the 
"formal sections", after Author's Address section, does this quite 
nicely.

> It would also be good to have contributors, acknowledgements,
> and author's addresses close together, because they are all related.
> But then we already have conflicting constraints :-(.

I can see how that could be desirable, but I'll have disagree on the
need for having them together.  However, I agree that Contributors and
Acknowledgements should be together, as there are no conflicts with
that.

-- 
Pekka Savola                 "You each name yourselves king, yet the
Netcore Oy                    kingdom bleeds."
Systems. Networks. Security. -- George R.R. Martin: A Clash of Kings



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