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Subject: Re: [office] Restoring examples in OpenFormula spec


Cutting to the part where we still differ:

David A. Wheeler wrote:
>> So, what about a non-normative version with the examples and other 
>> materials? That would allow not only some examples but as many as you 
>> care to insert.
> I think we SHOULD have a non-normative version with lots of detailed
> rationale, etc.  But examples are so helpful in understanding material that
> I'd prefer to re-insert examples of each function, right next
> to their definitions, in even the short version.  A spec that is accurate,
> but hard to understand, is less likely to be useful to its readers
> than a spec that is both accurate
> AND easy to understand.  Examples help with the latter.
This is where I disagree, not that examples aren't helpful but that they 
are necessary in the normative text. There may be a very limited number 
of cases and the directives so concede where examples may be necessary.

HOWEVER, it is clear from your response that you are taking this as an 
opportunity to insist on having examples for every function. I really 
don't think anyone needs an example of the "+" function, for example. Or 
a large number of others, assuming that we do our job correctly as a 
committee and write really good prose and/or notation.

There are parts of the graphics section in ODF that are at least as 
difficult to explain in prose as any of your functions. Should we take 
that to mean that we should have a graphic illustration of every aspect 
of graphics or charts?

The point being that we could easily see a 1,500 to 2,000 page ODF 
standard that is mostly *non-normative* examples.

Besides, examples are really a very small part of what would really be 

If you really wanted to be helpful why not include code from one or more 
project that implement these functions and capabilities in the standard? 
That would certainly be more helpful than any examples that you want to 
include with the functions. You could actually use the code in an ODF 

Make no mistake, I agree that examples are useful. I simply want them to 
be useful somewhere away from the normative version of the standard.
>> We keep telling people about the advantages of markup for their 
>> documents. How about displaying just a bit of that for one of our own?
> Sounds good, but I keep getting told that we can't submit dynamic documents to ISO.
> OpenDocument can support them, and the OpenFormula spec ALREADY has hidden sections
> (for the various rationales, etc.).   We haven't worked as much on the hidden parts;
> I was specifically told that we had to remove all that material (automatically)
> before even sending it to ISO.
> Instead of trying to fight the whole mindset about dynamic documents, it'd be
> easier to just include the examples.  Then the _primary_ thing that people would
> "add" would already be there.
Sigh, this has nothing to do with or without a mindset against dynamic 

What I am proposing is that we create a static, normative ODF standard 
that has no examples, no working code from open source projects, no XSLT 
stylesheets, no small applications, no case studies, included with the 
normative text.

At the same time, we can have at the OASIS site, either multiple static 
expanded versions of the ODF standard that add whatever you would like 
to see in a *expanded* version of the standard, such as examples, 
working code, XSLT stylesheets, small applications, case studies, etc., 
right along with the normative text. Or if OASIS would host the 
technology, we could produce those versions on the fly.

What part of that is so hard to understand?

One, the normative one, is a reasonable sized standard.

The others (note the plural) are just as reasonable (although not in 
size) but they are *not* limited to the normative text of the standard.

My point being that unlike before, we don't simply have to chose one or 
the other. We can have a normative text that can be read in a reasonable 
finite amount of time and yet have other versions that are better for 
other purposes.

Hope you are looking forward to a great weekend!


> --- David A. Wheeler
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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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