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Subject: Portable document?


While Michael works on integrating the remaining proposals I have been 
reviewing the latest formula draft.

I find the notion of a "portable" document both interesting and troubling.

My first impression was that any formula that conforms to OpenFormula 
would be "portable" but then it appeared that I could have a formula 
that conforms to OpenFormula but that isn't "portable." Yes?

That seems like an odd result for a standard.

Granted, the standard can specify semantics, such as strings may be up 
to 32,767 characters (assuming we have defined characters, perhaps by 
reference) in length and use that value definition with one or more 
functions. Conformance to those functions, therefore, requires at a 
minimum support of strings up to that length.

I then have an expectation that any application that claims to support 
OpenFormula will accept a string of that length or shorter.

In terms of the standard, we could say that lengths greater than some 
length are either undefined or provide for other options.

I suppose it is a matter of perspective. I see conformance to the 
standard as the "test" for portability. By analogy, it would be similar 
to having the "small group" but with value limits as part of its 
semantics. If I conform to the "small group" with those semantics, then 
my document will travel safely to any other application that supports 
the "small group" set of functions. Or be, at least to my way of 
thinking, "portable."

Am I missing something real subtle about the "portable" document 
provisions in the formula draft? (I have only read it once in its 
entirety. I am starting on a second pass now.)

Hope everyone is having a great day!


PS: Before I forget, is there a reason why we don't cite the W3C 
definitions of values types in chapter 4? Granted that some of our 
definitions are different but not all of them. Yes?

Patrick Durusau
Chair, V1 - US TAG to JTC 1/SC 34
Convener, JTC 1/SC 34/WG 3 (Topic Maps)
Editor, OpenDocument Format TC (OASIS), Project Editor ISO/IEC 26300
Co-Editor, ISO/IEC 13250-1, 13250-5 (Topic Maps)

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