[rfc-i] Text no longer definitive (was Re: Proposed way forwards on backward compatibility with v2)

Nico Williams nico at cryptonector.com
Tue Feb 18 12:15:29 PST 2014

On Tue, Feb 18, 2014 at 1:43 PM, Brian E Carpenter
<brian.e.carpenter at gmail.com> wrote:
> On 19/02/2014 08:04, Dave Crocker wrote:
>> On 2/18/2014 10:34 AM, Heather Flanagan (RFC Series Editor) wrote:
>>> Regarding artwork, ASCII or otherwise, the debate as to whether it
>>> should be normative in an IETF sense is ongoing.  The last time I beat
>>> my head against that particular wall, I believe the end result was that
>>> we (the RFC Editor and the IESG) would encourage the use of artwork as
>>> informative only, but recognize that artwork sometimes must be normative
>>> to a spec.
>> wfm.  interesting approach.  tnx.

And me.  Normative artwork on a case-by-case basis, mostly to be discouraged.

> I suspect that in practice we have many cases of normative ASCII art
> for bit layouts; describing bit layouts in English is painful and
> error-prone, so why bother?
> (IMNSHO, a bit layout in ASCII art with a fixed-width font is just
> about as unambiguous as you can get, other than using a formal
> language.)

If you're sight-impaired you might not have an easy time reading
bits-on-the-wire artwork.  RFC793 shows how to get this right.  I
don't think it's a pain.


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