[rfc-i] v3imp #8 Fragment tagging on sourcecode

Ted Lemon mellon at fugue.com
Fri Jan 23 14:12:47 PST 2015

On Jan 23, 2015, at 4:41 PM, Paul Kyzivat <pkyzivat at alum.mit.edu> wrote:
> I think it may be worth discussing how important this would be if there was a straightforward and consistent way to extract the full ABNF. ISTM that this style [presenting the ABNF in fragments and then in full in the appendix] exists primarily because of a lack of that tool.

I think this is probably true.   However, some people may feel that being able to _look_ at the entire ABNF as a unit is important, so I don't think we should assume that, given a proper ABNF extraction tool, this style will suddenly vanish from use.   If we want it to vanish from use, it should probably be something that the IESG and/or the RSE considers and that gets mentioned in a new version of the style guide.

> OTOH, there are times when I just want to look at the syntax, and having it there in one place is nice.

Yup.   Of course, an extraction tool, if it were really easy, would address that need.

> It is a bit of an editorial burden to manually maintain the consistency between the two. But whether that justifies tooling to avoid it is debatable.

I think that it neither does nor does not justify tooling.   It might at some point be used as a justification to add a feature like this to some tool.   The real question is, do we want to support such a tool in the syntax, and if so, to what degree of completeness?

> If you can extract all the fragments as one file, and the appendix as another file, then it is pretty trivial to compare them, without any specific tooling.


>> 3. The RFC has ABNF in an appendix, and references the ABNF in the appendix appear throughout the document.   Now you need anchor tags for the references.   I don't think this is actually very usable, though, so I'm not sure we really need to support this mode.   But I agree that we need to support anchor tags.
> This seems largely unworkable.

You mean this style of referencing wouldn't be very usable?   I tend to agree.   I just mentioned it for completeness.   But the anchor tags seem useful, and shouldn't be that hard.

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