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Subject: 18 Conformance, "according to the rules"

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The middle paragraph of 18 Conformance reads:

An implementation conforms to this specification if it can process a
conformant TOSCA Definitions document according to the rules described
in chapters 4 through 16 of this specification.

There are several problems with this paragraph but I will list them
all in this post.

1) "...according to the rules described..."

The paragraph immediately prior refers to "...normative portions..."
which is what is covered by IPR and is what implementers must conform
to in a specification.

The better fix is to refer to the normative sections, 4.3, 5.3, etc.
and say something like:

A TOSCA Definitions document is a document that conforms to Sections
4.2, 5.2, etc.

An implementation that processes a TOSCA Definitions document in
conformance with the syntax and semantics as defined in Sections 4.2,
5.2, etc., is a conforming TOSCA implementation.

Question: Is is possible to conform to less that all of the TOSCA
provisions? That is to have a TOSCA application that does not support
some feature of TOSCA?

If the answer to those questions is yes, then additional language
would be needed to specify sub-TOSCA documents and implementations
that can process such documents. (I don't know the details the spec so
can't answer that question.)

2) "...described in chapters 4 through 16 of this specification."

This definition excludes 2.1 Dependencies on Other Specifications, 2.2
Notational Conventions, 2.3 Normative References, 2.4 Non-Normative
References, 2.5 Typographical Conventions, 2.6 Namespaces and 2.7
Language Extensibility.

Excluding Section 2 from conformance means that the reliance of TOSCA
on XML Schema, RFC 2119, etc., is rendered null and void. No
implementer is required to follow those, although as a matter of
practice, such an implementer could claim conformance but not
interoperability with most other TOSCA implementations.

Another reason to designate and enumerate normative portions of the text.

BTW, Normative references are all relied on by the spec so calling out
XML Schema really isn't necessary.

- From the TC Process:

w. "Normative Reference" means a reference in a Standards Track Work
Product to an external document or resource with which the implementer
must comply, in order to comply with a Normative Portion of the Work

Which is another reason to not exclude normative references from the
normative provisions of the specification.

3) I think I covered this in the sub-TOSCA document question above.
Depending on how that is resolved, you may need sub-conformance
statements as well.

Hope everyone is having a great day!


- -- 
Patrick Durusau
Technical Advisory Board, OASIS (TAB)
Former 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)

Another Word For It (blog): http://tm.durusau.net
Homepage: http://www.durusau.net
Twitter: patrickDurusau
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