HTML and CSS Reference
In-Depth Information
One of the easiest ways to keep up-to-date with web standards is to subscribe to the news feeds of standardization
bodies and organizations, and regularly check their web sites. Course materials, conference proceedings, and
presentation slides are also available on many of these sites. An endless variety of further resources are also available.
W3C provides a weekly newsletter [46]. Its latest news is available in both Atom [47] and RSS [48] news feeds. The
vast majority of W3C documents are public and freely available.
General news on Unicode is available through the news feed of the Unicode Consortium [49].
The Dublin Core Metadata Initiative publishes news on the home page of its web site and provides a news feed [50].
The proceedings of the International Conference on Dublin Core and Metadata Applications are available at the DCMI
Publications page [51].
Scientific journal papers with Digital Object Identifier (DOI) can also be found throughout the Web, although many
of these documents are not in the public domain. Still, most of them provide at least a free abstract, and a reference list.
Types, Stages, and Status of Standards
The Web is a highly innovative medium where constant changes and improvements necessitate continuous standard
development. This results in different document maturity levels . W3C Recommendations progress through five such
levels, which is the W3C process flow [52]:
Working Draft (WD)
Last Call Working Draft
Candidate Recommendation (CR)
Proposed Recommendation (PR)
W3C Recommendation (REC)
The last version is considered by developers as the (de facto) standard to be applied. W3C Recommendations
are sometimes updated by separately published erratum . After a considerable amount of changes, new editions are
published that supersede the current version. Since W3C uses permanent addresses that won't change over time,
the URI of each version of their specifications is unchanged (and usually includes a datestamp), which ensures the
availability of all versions of their specifications. The document status determines which version is the most
up-to-date one and which one should be applied. The list of current W3C publications and the latest revision of
technical reports can be found in the W3C technical reports folder [53].
Other standardization bodies use different status conventions. The Internet Engineering Task Force, for example,
applies document status such as Internet draft , informational , and proposed standard . The latter one is defined as
a “generally stable specification which has resolved known design choices, is believed to be well-understood, has
received significant community review, and appears to enjoy enough community interest to be considered valuable.
However, further experience might result in a change or even retraction of the specification before it advances [54].”
The IETF RFCs are designated as standards , draft standards , proposed standards , best current practices , informational
documents , experimental documents , and historic standards [55].
The Microformat Community uses the status draft specification for those documents that are “somewhat mature
in the development process” and whose stability is not guaranteed [56]. Implementers of such documents are warned
to keep abreast of future developments and changes.
ISO applies the following conventions:
Preliminary Work Item (PWI)
New Work Item Proposal (NP or NWIP, NP Amd/TR/TS/IWA)
Working Draft (AWI, AWI Amd/TR/TS, WD, WD Amd/TR/TS)
Committee Draft (CD, CD Amd/Cor/TR/TS, PDAmd (PDAM), PDTR, PDTS)
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