[rfc-i] Pagination requirements

Tim Bray tbray at textuality.com
Tue May 22 15:58:50 PDT 2012

On Tue, May 22, 2012 at 3:31 PM, Martin Rex <mrex at sap.com> wrote:
> As I previously mentioned, I regularly print out RFCs that I implement
> and use the printed copy, and I am strongly opposed to make future RFCs
> offline-unusable just for the sake of the fun of it.

One of the reasons I want to get rid of the legacy line-printer format is
so I can print an RFC for offline reading.  I don’t think anyone in this
discussion is in favor of offline-unusual.

> Since printing with Web Browsers is still an open research problem,
> the possibility of creating a paper printout of an RFC that will be a
> close 100% match for printouts created by different people and
> independent of whether I use "Legal" or "ISO A4" paper is also a
> requirement.  Including a Table of Contents showing page numbers,
> because that is how to navigate in printed copies!

The “open research problem” remark is just not true; every browser I use
can print beautifully, and deal with a variety of paper sizes depending
where I am in the world.  As you note, doing this requires reformatting and
reflowing, and I appreciate the work that went into the software.
Pagination is an ephemeral artifact of a particular consumption scenario,
and page numbers are intrinsically broken as a basis for location and


> And it really helps when running into ambiguities or defects when
> the printout and the online version of the RFCs look similar.
> -Martin
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