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Subject: Provisional meeting minutes

If I hear no objections, I will post these minutes on 19 Dec 2000.

Title: DocBook TC Minutes, 7 Dec 2000

These notes summarize the DocBook Technical Committee (TC) meeting that took place in Washington D.C. on 6 and 7 Dec 2000 as part of the OASIS meetings colocated with XML 2000.

6 Dec

Failed to achieve quorum. No official meeting.

7 Dec

Meeting called to order by the chair.


  • Dennis Evans

  • Tony Graham

  • Sabine Ocker (provisional member)

  • Michael Sabrio

  • Norman Walsh (Chair)


  • Determine meeting dates for 2001

  • Discuss plans for DocBook 5.0

  • Review RFEs

  • Discuss Linking in DocBook

  • Discuss parameter entity reorganization

  • Discuss XML Schema

Determine meeting dates for 2001

Moved: we will meet face to face for 1 day at XML Europe (Berlin) and XML 2001 (Orlando, FL). We will request that our meetings be scheduled on the last day of the conference so as to overlap with other technical activities as little as possible. Furthermore, we will have telcons on 23 Feb, 27 Jul, and 28 Sep.

The motion was adopted without objection.

Discuss plans for DocBook 5.0

In accordance with earlier plans, DocBook 5.0 will be an XML DTD. However, there was little support for completely abandoning SGML. Many existing SGML systems will continue to be SGML based for some time and there are features (most notably exclusions) that are lost in XML.

Moved: the committee will produce an XML version of DocBook 5.0 with sufficient parameterization to allow SGML features to be "turned on" with a very small customization layer. The committee will provide the customization layer.

The motion was adopted without objection.

There was some discussion of using the public text display version to distinguish between the XML and SGML DTDs but it was eventually rejected.

Moved: the FPI for the XML version of DocBook V5.0 will be:

-//OASIS//DTD DocBook XML V5.0//EN

and the FPI for the SGML version will be:

-//OASIS//DTD DocBook SGML V5.0//EN

The motion was adopted without objection.

Review RFEs

It was observed that the RFE database is in a rather jumbled state. Action to norm: fix it.

RFE #140: Allow multiple MsgExplan inside SimpleMsgEntry

Moved: change the content model of SimpleMsgEntry to allow MsgExplan+.

The motion was adopted without objection.

The fact that we were adopting a motion that made the content model of SimpleMsgEntry more complex was not lost on us.

RFE #144: Add introductory material to lists

This continues to be an issue for Sun documentation.

Recap: Authors sometimes need to provide a paragraph or two of description before the items of a list. These paragraphs are considered to be part of the list, so it's perhaps not appropriate to put them before the list. Putting them before the list is problematic because grabbing the list and moving it elsewhere will not capture the necessary introductory material. Procedure already allows this structure.

No problems have been reported due to the fact that procedure allows this structure.

Moved: add %%component mix;*; (minus the list elements) to orderedlist, itemizedlist, calloutlist, and variablelist before the first list item.

The motion was adopted without objection.

RFE #145: Allow additional material after the last step in Procedure

Tabled: waiting for feedback from Sun on whether or not this solves the particular problem they've encountered.

RFE #93: Add markup for forms

Tabled: wait for the W3C XForms WG to finish then consider plugging it in similar to the MathML plugin.

RFE #114: Support for EBNF (XML Spec productions)

Tabled: leave as customization layer until interoperability is demonstrated. Action to the people who claim to need this: give us feedback!

RFE #132: Allow date to occur inline

Action: discuss on TC mailing list. Is this in scope? Do we want to do this?

RFE #133: Add newsgroup element

Action: definitely in scope. Discuss on TC list: do we add this as an element (like email) or a class on systemitem?

RFE #134: Additional elements to describe file systems and database objects

The request for database-related elements seems already to be handled by the database element.

Moved: add a new class value to filename, “extension”, to identify filename extensions.

The motion was adopted without objection.

RFE #135: Support for a po tag for creating pot files for easier doc translation

Tabled: we don't understand the request. Action to norm: ask for additional detail.

RFE #136: Allow co in userinput

Tabled: callouts in the middle of a paragraph seem odd. Action to norm: ask for additional detail.

RFE #138: Add PDF to ImageData format notations

The motion was adopted without objection.

RFE #139: Add SVG as a Notation

The motion was adopted without objection.

RFE #141: Add 'contribution' attribute to OtherCredit

This would allow the contribution made by persons given other credit to be identified. Discuss on TC list. What about multiple authors?

Discuss Linking in DocBook

Thinking about XLink:

  • Link/Ulink we think will be collapsed into Link using XLink “simple link” semantics.

  • Xref will remain because of the gentext processing expectation. An empty "Link" cannot have the XRef semantic because it conflicts with the empty "Ulink" semantic.

  • Olink could be collapsed into link because xpointer can replace targetdocent.

    Sun makes heavy use of OLink, action to Dennis: investigate the problems that removing OLink would cause.

  • Action to Norm: After Dennis reports, make a concrete proposal before 5.0 is officially published (if XLink is a Recommendation in time). Include an extendedlink element for use inside *info elements.

Discuss parameter entity reorganization

Discussion continues.

Discuss XML Schema

Discussion continues.

Meeting adjourned.

                                        Be seeing you,

Norman Walsh <ndw@nwalsh.com>      | A man may destroy everything
http://www.oasis-open.org/docbook/ | within himself, love and hate and
Chair, DocBook Technical Committee | belief, and even doubt, but as
                                   | long as he clings to life he
                                   | cannot destroy fear.--Joseph Conrad

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