[rfc-i] What the text version is used for (was Re: The <tt> train wreck)

Carsten Bormann cabo at tzi.org
Mon Aug 23 12:38:45 PDT 2021

On 23. Aug 2021, at 18:33, tom petch <daedulus at btconnect.com> wrote:
> On 23/08/2021 17:09, Carsten Bormann wrote:
>> How about inserting schema tree identifiers?
>> Much more stable.
> I do not understand.  The YANG is the schema, those 41 pages are the structure of the tree, the identifiers, their syntax and semantics.

Yes, this was a bit terse.

What we essentially are discussing here is a way to point into a YANG specification.
Line numbers have been mentioned as one such way.
We do have a fragment identifier syntax for lines in (at least a plain) text file (RFC 5147).
But these are brittle.  Adding a line number every, say, 70 lines would also be disruptive.

However, a YANG spec is a structured document.  So why not employ the structure of that document as a fragment identifier syntax?
Adding a full schema tree identifier in certain places (left as exercise for the reader) would provide a nice way to point into the YANG spec.
(Of course, that identifier is also known when it is not added to the YANG spec, but with it added simple text searching would work.)
So what I’m proposing is defining a fragment identifier syntax for YANG specs plus a convention to include these (typically as part of a pretty-printing step) to enable text-based searching.

(And, as a side effect, having the full schema tree identifier handy would also help with reading through 40-page YANG specs.)

Grüße, Carsten

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