RE: document writing/editing tools used by IETF

Larry Masinter <> Fri, 26 February 2021 06:08 UTC

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Sender: Larry Masinter <>
From: Larry Masinter <>
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Subject: RE: document writing/editing tools used by IETF
Date: Thu, 25 Feb 2021 22:07:47 -0800
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Better in the sense that they were explicitly designed and managed for the exact purpose of document publication and review, unlike GitHub, which was designed for managing code in some programming languages, and only poorly adapted for editing technical specifications.

You can do your own search but, for example,

certainly I don't propose IETF select one. My proposal is a restriction of yours: not to allow ANY format for an I-D but just to allow document submission in HTML or PDF (and not just plain text or XML2RFC).

The reasoning is to allow authors/editors to choose their own development tools, most of which can produce PDF or HTML but few can produce (legible) text/plain or XML2RFC.

Historical note: My co-author of RFC 1867 in 1995 was working on Xerox DocuShare, which needed form-based file upload for online document collaboration.


> -----Original Message-----
> From: Keith Moore <>
> Sent: Thursday, February 25, 2021 6:46 PM
> To: Larry Masinter <>rg>; 'Carsten Bormann' <>
> Cc:
> Subject: Re: document writing/editing tools used by IETF
> On 2/25/21 9:06 PM, Larry Masinter wrote:
> >   For collaboration, there's a generation of collaborative tools from Google
> Docs to Dropbox and Microsoft tools that are a lot better than GitHub for
> collaboration.
> Better in what sense?  I try to not let most of my computers talk to Google,
> for example, because they're so invasive.   (Not sure about Dropbox or
> Microsoft because I basically never have any reason to use anything
> produced by either.)
> Keith