Technical Plenary Week

28 February - 4 March 2005
Boston, MA, USA

Technical Plenary Day Agenda

Wednesday, 2 March 2005

Minutes | IRC log | Feedback Survey [restricted access] | TP Week page

The Wednesday of the Technical Plenary Week offers a unique opportunity for Working, Interest and Coordination Group participants who have registered to gather in one room and discuss technical topics of broad interest to the attendees, and of significant importance to past, present and future of the World Wide Web Consortium. Discussion during this Technical Plenary day will not be considered Member confidential. Slides will be publicly accessible.

If you have IRC, you are welcome to join channel #tp on irc.w3.org:6665 to help record the meeting.


09:00 Session 1: Welcome

Description: Two unique features of the World Wide Web Consortium are its broad spectrum of foundational work, coupled with its strong emphasis on coordination across and outside of that spectrum. The Technical Plenary week is a unique occasion when the people responsible for the work and coordination facilitate their objectives face-to-face. This session provides a brief overview of the W3C's spectrum of near-past, present and near-future work, with the hope that you will better understand (and be inspired by) the spectrum and significance of: (a) our recent accomplishments, (b) our future work, (c) cross-group cooperation and review, and (d) subsequent sessions of the Tech Plenary.

Meeting Chair: Steve Bratt (Chief Operating Officer, W3C) [slides]

09:30 Session 2: Extensibility and Versioning

Description: The Technical Architecture Group is considering a number of issues related to extensibility and versioning of XML languages (XML Versioning-41). They are considering strategies for constructing languages that can change in a backwards- and forwards-compatible way, as well as constraints and good practices for using XML, XML Namespaces, and W3C XML Schema in language construction and extension. The TAG has had a continuing dialog on this topic with stakeholder Working Groups. This session provides and open forum for discussion of these issues, led by a panel of representatives from some of the stakeholders and the TAG.

Moderator: Michael Sperberg-McQueen (W3C; Chair XML Coordination Group, XML Schema Working Group, XSL Working Group)
: Paul Downey (BT; Web Services Addressing and Description Working Groups)

Panel: Dan Connolly (W3C; Chair RDF Data Access Working Group, Semantic Web Coordination Group, Technical Architecture Group, URI Coordination Group), Noah Mendelsohn (IBM; Technical Architecture Group, XML Protocol Working Group, XML Schema Working Group), David Orchard (BEA; Technical Architecture Group, Web Services Addressing Working Group, Web Services Description Working Group, XML Protocol Working Group), Henry Thompson (W3C; Technical Architecture Group, XML Schema Working Group, XSL Working Group), Mark Baker (Justsystem; Compound Document Formats Working Group), Hoylen Sue (DSTC Pty Ltd; XML Query Working Group, XML Schema Working Group), Tim Boland (NIST; CSS Working Group, QA Working Group, WCAG Working Group), Chris Lilley (W3C; Chair SVG Working Group, Technical Architecture Group)

Presentation: "Versioning and Extensibility - Its part in my downfall" (Paul Downey) (slides, text version)

10:30 Break
11:00 Session 3: Where XML is Going, and Where it Should (or Shouldn't) Go

Description: There are several efforts to move XML to solve new problem areas. A less charitable way would be to say that XML is being pulled in many directions. In this interactive panel we'll have several key participants and luminaries talk about where XML is going, where it should go, and perhaps where it shouldn't. Audience participation if time allows.

Moderator: Rich Salz (DataPower; XKMS and Web Services Addressing Working Groups)

Panel: Jim Melton (Oracle; co-Chair, XML Query Working Group), Norm Walsh (Sun Microsystems; co-Chair, XML Core Working Group; co-Chair, URI Coordination Group; TAG participant), Liam Quin (W3C; XML Activity Lead), Robin Berjon (Expway; Chair, XML Binary Characterization Working Group) [slides], Noah Mendelsohn (IBM; Technical Architecture Group, XML Protocol Working Group, XML Schema Working Group) [slides]

12:00 Session 4: Issues in Developing Multiple Specification Test Suites

Description: As W3C specifications become more modularized there is a growing number of dependencies between W3C specifications. This panel session will demonstrate and discuss the issues of building test suites that include the requirements of multiple W3C specifications for insuring interoperability.

Moderators: Wendy Chisholm (W3C; WAI ERT Working Group, WCAG Working Group)

Participants: Jon Gunderson (DRES; Chair, UAAG Working Group) [slides], Patrick Curran (Sun Microsystems; QA Working Group) [slides], Vincent Hardy (Sun Microsystems; Chair, Compound Document Formats Working Group) [slides]

12:30 Lunch

Assigned lunch tables.

Discussion Topic: Joint Tests Suite Development

Description: The purpose of the lunch discussion is to explore the importance and the resources needed for the development of joint test suites. During lunch people will be asked to introduce themselves, state which working groups they participate in, the dependencies of their specification on other specifications, summarize their group's development of test suites and how test suites have facilitated the implementation of their specifications. After the introductions people will be asked to discuss the following questions related to joint test suite development.

  1. What are the features needed in joint test suites for your specification?
  2. What are the resources and coordination that would facilitate development of joint test suites?
  3. What is the importance of joint test suites in insuring interoperability?

At least one person from each table needs to fill out a short form summarizing the table discussion. The results will be presented during the Lightning Talks session.

14:00 Session 5: The Future of Web Applications

Description: With the ubiquity of Web browsers and Web document formats across a range of platforms and devices, many developers are using the Web as a platform-independent application environment. In this session we'll look at some of the results of last year's W3C Workshop on Web Applications and Compound Documents, and some additional ideas for advancing application capability.

Moderator: Rhys Lewis (Volantis; Chair, Device Independence Working Group)

Presentations: Bert Bos (W3C; Style Activity Lead) - Is it possible to make mobile, accessible and skinnable client-side Web applications? (15 mins), Dave Raggett (W3C/Canon; Multimodal Interaction Activity and Voice Browser Activity Lead) - The Ubiquitous Web (15 mins)

Panel: Rich Schwerdtfeger (IBM; HTML, Protocols & Format, User Agent Accessibility Guidelines Working Groups), Brad Porter (Tellme; Multimodal Interaction and Voice Browser Working Groups), Mark Birbeck (x-port; W3C Invited Expert; HTML, XForms Working Groups), Ian Hickson (Opera; CDF and SVG Working Groups), Jon Ferraiolo (Adobe; SVG Working Group), Kevin Kelly (IBM; CDF Working Group)

15:00 Session 6: Lost in W3C Web Space

Description: Usability tests (observing real people completing real tasks) on the WAI site revealed just how lost people can get on the W3C Web site. Because of the huge impact of the site on our meeting our goals, we recently redesigned the WAI sub-site. In this session we will:

  • Demonstrate the importance and power of effective Web design in promoting specifications, encouraging implementations, and increasing the efficiency of Working Groups and Team members.
  • Overview the user-centered design process that WAI used to redesign the sub-site.
  • Present the final prototype of the redesigned site.
  • Introduce what Working Groups can do with limited time and effort to increase the effectiveness of their W3C Web pages.

This lively, interactive session includes audience participation (bring your laptop with wireless network connection), demos, quantitative and qualitative results of before and after usability testing, and enlightening video clips.

Moderator: Shawn Lawton Henry (W3C; WAI Education and Outreach Working Group) [presentation materials]

15:30 Break

Session 7: Lightning Tech Talks

Description: Presenters will provide strictly-monitored 3-minute talks on topics that range from interesting, informative, controversial or all of the above. The audience will have the opportunity to question and comment on each presentation.

Moderators: Paul Downey (BT; Web Services Addressing and Description Working Groups) and Dominique Hazael-Massieux (W3C; Quality Assurance Activity Lead and W3C Systeam)

Topics and Presenters:

  • "Test Suite Lunch Time Exercise Results", Wendy Chisholm (W3C; WAI ERT Working Group, WCAG Working Group)
  • "Tools to Support Working Groups", Dominique Hazaël-Massieux (W3C; Quality Assurance Activity Lead and W3C Systeam) [slides]
  • "Should Formatting Properties be Standardized Between Working Groups?", Steve Zilles (AB Chair, XSL Working Group) [slides]
  • "XML For Everyone?", Richard Ishida (W3C; Chair I18N GEO Working Group, I18N Tag Set Working Group) [slides]
  • "Web Services and Composition", Glen Daniels (Sonic Software; Web Services Addressing Working Group, Web Services Description Working Group)
  • "Topic Maps and the Semantic Web", Steve Pepper (Ontopia; Convenor SC34/WG3, Semantic Web Best Practices Working Group) [slides]
  • "Project SIMILE: Helping build the Semantic Web", Ryan Lee (MIT), Stefano Mazzocchi (MIT)
  • "Privacy and Transparency in data mining on the Web", Danny Weitzner (W3C Technology & Society domain leader)
  • "Standards-based Internet Applications ... Today", Mark Birbeck (x-port.net, HTML Working Group, XForms Working Group)
  • "Evolution (v) Revolution", Håkon Wium Lie (Opera; Cascading Style Sheets Working Group) [slides]
  • "Evolution (v) Revolution", Steven Pemberton (W3C; Chair HTML Working Group, Chair XForms Working Group, Hypertext Coordination Group) [slides]

  • TBD - Contact Dom and Paul if you are interested in presenting a Lightning Talk.

17:00 Session 8:Voice and Multimodal Interaction Demonstrations

Description: Mechanisms for accessing the Web continue to expand. From PCs to cell phones, a host of devices now enable user to access the Web through a mouse, touchscreens, pens, voice, gestures, and assistive technologies. These technologies are increasingly being developed using W3C standards, including voice and multimodal standards, and are being deployed both in clients and in the network, especially for mobile applications. This session will feature several demonstrations to give you an insight into the latest advancements in these areas.

Moderator: Scott McGlashan (HP; co-Chair, Voice Browser Working Group)


  • Ewald Anderl, Kirusa: Mobile multimodal games
  • Mikko Honkala, HUT: Voice enabling XForms
  • Gerald McCobb, IBM: Mobile multimodal for enterprise
  • Scott McGlashan, HP: VoiceXML and video
  • Dave Raggett, Canon/W3C: Voice enabling web browsers with XSLT and SSML

Panel: Participants will discuss emerging issues, including why many mobile applications use network components and custom clients rather than web browsers.

18:00 Adjourn

The evening reception starts at 19:00 (7pm) in the Grand Ballroom.

Send your reviews and comments on Technical Plenary

Those who attended this Technical Plenary meeting are kindly requested to complete the post-Meeting Survey, to help us make next year's Tech Plenary even stronger.

The deadline for responding is midnight Eastern US time, 18 March 2005.

Many thanks to the Program Committee ...

Paul Downey (BT), Web Services Addressing and Description Working Groups
Jon Gunderson (DRES), Chair, User Agent Guidelines Working Group
Rhys Lewis (Volantis), Chair, Device Independence Working Group
Scott McGlashan (HP), co-Chair, Voice Browser Working Group
Addison Phillips (webMethods), Chair, Internationalization Core Working Group
Rich Salz (DataPower), XKMS and Web Services Addressing Working Groups
Wendy Chisholm (W3C), Team Contact, WAI ERT and WCAG Working Groups
Dominique Hazaël-Massieux (W3C), Quality Assurance Activity Lead
Susan Lesch (W3C), Communications Team
Steve Bratt (W3C), Chief Operating Officer, TPPC Chair

... and thanks to all Moderators, Panelists and Participants.

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Steve Bratt