See minutes online for a more detailed record of the discussions.
The STEM Task Force has conducted a survey among experts on their experience in publishing STEM content. The Survey is now closed; there was a first glance at the results during the call (all this is preliminary, a more systematic evaluation is still to be done).
There were 34 responses (out of 93 asked). Overall, the results are fine, although (at first glance) nothing overly exciting. Most of the responders were “end users”, i.e., researchers who publish in the area. The answers also highlighted some issues with the survey itself, e.g., the questions may not have been as clear as necessary. The bias or the responders was clearly towards CS and Mathematics.
There was a clear tendency towards making the content reusable and using the Web as a primary platform. Beyond MathML, no one additional STEM format came to the fore as major trend (CML was mentioned several times). As for delivery format, HTML was ahead of PDF as a primary format, but publishing in PDF is almost always present as a secondary format (without enthusiasm, just out of necessity).
The next goal is to have a more systematic evaluation of the result with the goal of summarizing in a note. The raw results of the survey will also be put into public, although it has to be strictly anonymized first.
There was already a discussion on identifiers a few weeks ago, that referred to the selectors of the open annotation model as a possible approach for defining fragment identifiers in EPUB-WEB. That meeting was followed by and email discussion with the Web Annotation Working Group (that works on the model), to see if the selectors could be transformed into bona fide fragment identifiers.
The problem that arose during the discussion is the way fragment identifiers are defined (in general). Indeed, fragment identifiers are never defined in isolation; they are defined for a specific media type and registered as such by IANA. In this sense, serializing the selector model in general is not a real option. However, it is possible to do so for specific media types; in the case of EPUB-WEB, HTML is an obvious target.
It has been emphasized that if such a serialization is done, it should be done together with the Web Annotation Working Group to avoid discrepancies. That Working Group has already touched upon this issue (in the context of rangefinder) in their recent F2F meeting.
In the context of EPUB-WEB, CFI has to be evaluated first, though; after all, CFI defines, essentially, a fragment ID for EPUB3 already. Finding out whether CFI works (or not) for EPUB-WEB, if yes, how, if not why, is important before engaging into anything else. This is clearly a topic for the upcoming F2F meeting of the Interest Group.
HTML5 and footnotes
There was a recent email discussion on the possibility of defining a footnote element in HTML5. This was followed by some separate discussion with the experts of the HTML WG. As of now, the situation is that HTML will not have a formal proposal for such an element, so the DPUB IG should pursue ARIA Role approach for defining footnotes. Maybe it will be taken up in the future, though.