[rfc-i] Does the canonical RFC format need to be "readable" by developers and others?

Joe Hildebrand (jhildebr) jhildebr at cisco.com
Sat Jul 7 10:34:14 PDT 2012

On 7/7/12 9:19 AM, "Paul Hoffman" <paul.hoffman at vpnc.org> wrote:

>However, no one here is proposing that the canonical format for RFCs use
>just "the basics of HTML". All of the proposals so far have included at
>least two significant features that only regular HTML users and experts
>would consider "basic": attributes and the mandatory closing of tags.
>Probably more than 90% of HTML users in the IETF do not normally use
>attributes, and would have to be taught the rules for them, particularly
>quoting rules. Probably only half of HTML users in the IETF know that you
>really should close all your tags.

Could you add a little more clarity of what you're thinking when you say
"attributes"?  I'd say that lots of folks that use HTML include images and
hyperlinks, for example.  Nor would I classify attributes as
understansibility='difficult'.  Regardless, XML2RFC uses attributes also,
so it's kind of a moot point, unless you meant something I'm not

>I propose that once you bring in those critical features, editing XML and
>HTML become much more similar.

I agree that once you require closing and proper nesting of elements, XML
and HTML are more similar in terms of their difficulty of generating their
syntax. However, if your malformed HTML is close enough to get a browser
to render it correctly, it's also close enough for TagSoup (e.g.
http://ccil.org/~cowan/XML/tagsoup/) to fix it up.

Joe Hildebrand

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