Re: [Tools-discuss] [rfc-i] Proposed survey on I-D authoring tools

Jay Daley <> Sun, 04 October 2020 23:13 UTC

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From: Jay Daley <>
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Date: Mon, 5 Oct 2020 12:13:19 +1300
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To: Ronald Tse <>
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Subject: Re: [Tools-discuss] [rfc-i] Proposed survey on I-D authoring tools
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Thanks Ronald

> On 3/10/2020, at 4:22 PM, Ronald Tse <> wrote:
> Hi Jay,
> Please find my replies inline. Thanks!
>>> "AsciiDoc using Metanorma / AsciiRFC”
>> I’m happy to add the 'AsciiRFC' part but is there a reason you want the ' (formerly known as asciidoctor-rfc) ' removed?
> Our original 'asciidoctor-rfc’ only generates XML RFC v2 (and the pre-release version of v3), and has been superseded by Metanorma for nearly 2 years.

As you’ve probably read, there are people still using stone tablets so two years is like a blink of the eye here. I’ll keep in the '(formerly known as asciidoctor-rfc)' just to help those who are versionally* challenged.

* I made 'versionally' up but I think it works.

>>> Can we add an option like:
>>> “I don’t know; my authoring tool seems to do that for me"
>> Unfortunately this doesn’t really make sense as an additional option for that question.  It’s a matrix question where people answer each of the options with one of
>>   • Always
>>     • Very often
>>     • Sometimes
>>     • Rarely
>>     • Never [Ensure this is scored as 0]
>> Also, I don’t understand how this benefits us as the respondents may or may not have a built-in checker they don’t know about - can you explain the thinking behind it?
> I took the intent of this question as to gauge whether XML RFCs submitted were valid upon submission. If most submissions were not validated prior (e.g. authors like using the submission process for validation), then the RPC presumably needs more resourcing to reject invalid ones. On the other hand, if most submissions were already valid, resourcing is less of a concern.
> For example, a typical Metanorma user may not be aware of the exact validation tools used mentioned in this question. One may put “Never” as they might not have ever heard of these validation tools. However, they do know that Metanorma helps them validate the file (by the output and warnings), but not sure what exactly that process entails.
> Therefore the option of “I don’t know, my authoring tool seems to do that for me” rescues them from the “Never” bucket — otherwise the answers may be skewed.

First, just to be clear - I’ve bundled all checking/validation tools together but you’re only talking about validating the XML, not validating YANG, ABNF etc, and so you only mean to see if Metanorma reduces the need for xml2rfc as a validator?  I’m checking this, because if that is the case then this extra option doesn’t make sense to add for all those other validators.

Second, I must admit that I assumed that only valid XML was accepted and I need to check exactly what happens there.  If not then yes that will have an impact on resources.  However, that’s not the intent of the question, which is to understand what tools people use and adding this doesn’t fit with that intent.  

To get at what you have identified here, I could add a question similar to this:

"How do you ensure that your draft is correctly formatted/validated when you submit it? (check all that apply)"
- I use the checkers/validators in the question above
- This is a feature of my authoring tool
- I submit my draft and correct any errors if it is rejected [Remove if invalid drafts are accepted]
- I don’t ensure that my draft is correctly formatted  [Remove if only valid drafts are accepted}


BTW if you want to know if people only use Metanorma then I can filter for that and I’ve also got a general action to safely release survey data, so this could be the first of those to allow people to understand the results in more depth.


> Kind regards,
> Ron

Jay Daley
IETF Executive Director