[Matroska-devel] EBML specification component for review - About this Document

Steve Lhomme slhomme at matroska.org
Sat May 2 18:39:15 CEST 2015

On Fri, May 1, 2015 at 2:12 PM, Dave Rice <dave at dericed.com> wrote:

> > On May 1, 2015, at 6:05 AM, Moritz Bunkus <moritz at bunkus.org> wrote:
> >
> > Hey,
> >
> >> Although the RFC draft was in draft stage, the EBML specification at
> >> matroska-org.github.io/libebml/ isn’t. I suggest not moving this to
> >> the EBML spec.
> >
> > This reminds me: what is our goal? Currently we have two documents. For
> > me the goal is to come out of this process with only one document
> > superseding the older two. While RFCs may not be the easiest things to
> > read for human beings they are the de-facto standard for technical
> > specification in the internet.
> We have two, but I think one (the spec now in github pages) can be updated
> and the RFC draft deprecated.
> > Therefore I think our goal should be: create an EBML RFC, remove the two
> > older documents.
> For transparency, I suggest marking the older drafts clearer as superseded
> by a new spec, but not to outright remove them.
> > So »moving to the EBML spec« is not something I would suggest in general
> > anyway – unless the EBML spec is the one document we want to bring into
> > proper RFC shape.
> I think that's the goal. Though I'm talking about making a new RFC spec
> from http://matroska-org.github.io/libebml/ not from the RFC draft.
> Though we're presently evaluating what from the RFC draft should be
> considered in that process.
> > Just to be clear what we are talking about.
> >
> >> RFC2119 is decent boilerplate for this type of specification. Though
> >> the use of these terms in the EBML specification is fairly low: 1
> >> shall, 1 should, and 2 may.
> >
> > Doesn't matter if our goal is an RFC. If it is then the RFC2119
> > boilerplate is necessary.
> I send a patch.
> >> In all cases the RFC2119 meaning seems appropriate. For instance for
> >> "All level 1 elements should include a CRC-32” should in RFC2119 terms
> >> means RECOMMENDED which sounds about right since it’s rare that I see
> >> EBML with CRCs in this way, but it ‘should’ happen.
> >
> > I agree.
> >
> >> This section on ABNF expression appears in the RFC draft and the
> >> resulting expressions are used recurrently in the draft, but the EBML
> >> specs don’t include this. In part these seems to be because what the
> >> RFC draft expresses in ABNF is expressed in the EBML spec via an HTML
> >> table. For the purposes of submitting an EBML spec to the IETF I can
> >> see why Martin rewrote much of this in ABNF to meet the usual RFC
> >> formatting, but for reviewing the specification I prefer the table
> >> view of the EBML spec. Perhaps there does need to be two concurrent
> >> versions of the spec, one formal for IETF and one for pretty web
> >> display.
> >
> > This is exactly what I'm talking about above. We should be clear about
> > this before we continue any further.
> >
> > I disagree that we should have two documents. Two documents always means
> > manual synchronization between the two which is error-prone. Also there
> > are formats out there specified solely by RFCs, e.g. the specs around
> > Xiph's Opus codec[1].
> Agreed. I'd consider the RFC as the priority and would lead later
> development of human-readable documentation about the RFC. IF the RFC is
> standardized we can help write documentation about the RFC. For instance

Agreed too.

Steve Lhomme
Matroska association Chairman
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