The fruits of quite a bit of TAG labour over the last few months is now available for your bedtime-reading pleasure. I’m referring to the latest draft of the Architecture of the World Wide Web which, when it’s complete, will allegedly serve as the impartial arbiter for many thorny disputes and give guidelines to the mad scientists who are thinking up next year’s Cool New Web Stuff. Herewith a quickie overview guide as to what’s cooked and what’s not.
This is the first draft that I can actually say I’m more or less happy with, where the parts that are finished-enough to be useful are starting to be bigger than the “great stuff will be here real soon now” parts. In particular Sections 2 and 3 are reasonably fully sketched out and starting to be worth pointing people at.
Work Needed Here · This is far from finished. Here is the list of things that loom in my mind as really in need of work:
Section 2.3, on “URI Authority”—whereas Tim Berners-Lee and Dan Connolly care a lot about this and are trying to get something important across, I haven’t figured out what (if anything) this section is trying to tell programmers to do or not do.
Section 3.2.1 is kind of a grab-bag of a bunch of “motherhood” principles that probably need either to be tossed out or found a better home somewhere in the document.
Section 4, the third leg of the identification/representation/interaction architectural tripod, basically just isn’t there yet. That may not be enough to stop us from taking this forward through the W3C process—it’s unlikely this document will ever be “finished”—but we do have some good material in the queue for this section if we can ever get there.
A Mystery · Why, I wonder, did nobody ever get around to writing this stuff down in one place before? This work is a welcome diversion and is not helping grind anyone’s axe or feather anyone’s nest; but it’s worth doing for its own sake.