[rfc-i] Guidelines for illustrations

Peter Saint-Andre stpeter at stpeter.im
Mon Apr 23 19:43:24 PDT 2012

On 4/23/12 4:39 PM, Larry Masinter wrote:
> I think some simple guidelines for illustrations would go a long way.
> Maybe not "rules", but "guidelines". But engineers often get carried
> away since most people who author Internet Drafts are not
> professional designers and don't think about simple things like
> accessibility and whether the diagram will print out.
> For text, the RFC editor can actually fix grammar errors and missing
> references and periods in the wrong place. For graphics, the RFC
> editor can only fix things for which the RFC editor has tools which
> can edit the graphics that are delivered to the RFC editor.
> That won't be true for graphics delivered as images -- not editable.
> And while Adobe illustrator can be used to edit SVG, the kinds of
> edits needed are probably not really supported.
> Some guidelines:
> Keep the diagram or illustration to something that could reasonably
> be done in ASCII art. That's not because we like ASCII art, but just
> as a matter of insuring maximum interoperability. For example,
> diagrams and illustrations could be kept to simple lines, arcs, text
> which doesn't depend on the font -- even if the font is embedded.
> Diagrams should avoid unnecessary use of color -- to  make sure the
> illustration or diagram can be printed on a black and white printer,
> that it doesn't require calibration of color of devices.

Larry, those are very good points.

> I don't know how much of this the RFC editor wants to get into,
> though.


> If it is a requirement that someone can take an old RFC and start
> editing it to produce a new one, 

The same might apply to taking over an Internet-Draft, or to
collaborating on a document with someone else.

> then having the archival form of the
> illustrations be in an editable vector graphic format seems a
> minimum, but that's problematic, if only because the field is still
> developing.

Thanks for the input.


Peter Saint-Andre

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