[rfc-i] RFC Production Center request for unnumbered sections

Jim Schaad ietf at augustcellars.com
Wed Dec 11 10:45:45 PST 2013

The request springs from some of the changes that are being looked at for how sections are done in the newer proposed format.  There are plans to have additional sections such as contributors which, like the current authors section, is present but not numbered.





From: Tim Bray [mailto:tbray at textuality.com] 
Sent: Wednesday, December 11, 2013 9:30 AM
To: Jim Schaad
Cc: RFC Interest
Subject: Re: [rfc-i] RFC Production Center request for unnumbered sections


This seems like a pretty big change to ask for.  RFCs have traditionally had section numbers, and these are commonly used in references to them.  Is there a precedent for section-number-less RFCs that I missed?


On Wed, Dec 11, 2013 at 9:03 AM, Jim Schaad <ietf at augustcellars.com> wrote:

There has been a request from the RFC Production Center to allow for unnumbered sections to occur in xml2rfc v2 (Ticket #105).  Doing so will change the current schema to implement this.


The original request is to allow for these sections to occur at the start and the end of the middle and back elements.  Discussions in the ticket suggest that it should be allowed to occur at the start or end of any numbered section.


The proposed change is as follows:


1.       Change the dtd to allow an “unnumbered” attribute on section which has a default value of “no”

2.       Xml2rfc will enforce that a section tagged as “unnumbered” cannot occur between any two numbered sections

3.       Xml2rfc will enforce that a section cannot occur as a child of an “unnumbered” section

4.       Unnumbered sections will be kept on a separate counter from numbered sections and will be auto-numbered using ‘u#’ rather than ‘#’.  Thus leading to ‘rfc.section.u1’ or ‘rfc.section.5.u3’

5.       Looking at the HTML output for sections, I find it odd that there is an ‘a’ element emitted that points to where one is for sections.

    <h1 id="rfc.section.1"><a href="#rfc.section.1">1.</a> Introduction</h1>

since we don’t have a bullet in this case to point to, I would propose that the ‘a’ element be omitted.


I have been advised that requests coming from the RFC Production center should be satisfied when possible.  The above proposal does go farther than what the original request was and can be scaled back if that is felt necessary.




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