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Community & Business Groups

W3C Forum

W3C Forum Now Historical

We instituted the W3C Forum in 2011 so that people could discuss ideas prior to proposing a Community Group and for some announcements. In practice, the W3C Forum has not been used very much, and the staff makes announcements via the Community Council blog. Therefore, we are making this blog historical.

Those who wish to build support for a new idea are encouraged to propose a Community Group (or Business Group), which is announced via a post on the main Community Group blog. People are encouraged to provide feedback in the form of comments to those blog posts.

Questions? Write to the W3C Community Council.

Simplified join pages now live

Hello! In response to some feedback on the usability of the Community Group join pages, we have simplified them. You may need to refresh a page (to clear your cache) before you see the update.

The previous design involved two steps: confirming an affiliation and pushing a button, then agreeing to the CLA and pressing another button. We had chosen this design to ensure that people were attentive to the important step of confirming affiliation.

Several people let us know that the two phases were confusing, so we have simplified it to just one: there are still two checkboxes, but a single button to submit the join form.

We hope you will find this an improvement!


Kicking off

Many thanks to those who have signed up to the XDMDL group. This post gives some details about how I propose to run the group.


I have set up a Confluence Wiki at Material for this group is in the XDMDL space (click on the link at the left had side of the dashboard).

Guests can browse most of the material on the wiki, except for details of group members and joining instructions for the calls. They cannot add, edit or delete anything.

If members of the XDMDL group send me their email addresses, I can send you a log-in for the wiki. Take a moment to look at the Help space (left hand side of the dashboard) which gives some more information about how I have organised the wiki.

The wiki is running a slightly old version of Confluence. When I have a couple of days to spare, I will try and upgrade to the most recent version. In the meantime, I have not been able to configure the email functionality – so do not expect the wiki to keep you updated yet.

I propose that we should work on the draft using Word files using Tracked Changes. I have posted the first instalment of the draft to the wiki (see It is a largish file, as I have embedded fonts – but we can discuss how we want to do this on the calls. It may be that, with the most recent version of Confluence, drafting on the wiki itself might be practical.


I propose to have weekly calls on Fridays at 1500 GMT, 1600 CET. Because UK summer time is out-of sync with US summer time, that makes it 1100 EDT for the time being – but it will soon go back to 1000 EDT again.

Our first call will be this Friday, 20 March. I propose to take half the call discussing the kick-off, and half making a start running through my straw-man proposal for XDMDL. I suspect that it will take a further two calls to complete discussion of the straw man, after which people can get out their torches.

Joining instructions have been circulate on the public email reflector and are available to members of the group on the wiki.

Email reflector

Our main email reflector is Please use this if your want to communicate with the rest of the group, and particularly if you do not yet have a login to the wiki.

Looking forward to seeing you on Friday.

Deployment plan for new Community and Business Group site – 12 February


We plan to deploy the new Community and Business Group site on Thursday, 12 February 2015 at 10am ET.

We announced [1] the beta site on 29 September 2014 to test a list of features [2] and have made changes based on feedback. We have also
improved the performance of the “current groups” and “reports” pages.

We expect the deployment to require less than one hour. During deployment, people:

* CAN join and leave existing groups.
* CAN propose new groups (but they won’t be created until after deployment).
* CANNOT create or modify blog posts.

After deployment, if you see issues, please write to

Note: We do not expect to maintain the beta server indefinitely, so those URIs are not permanent.

Ian Jacobs


Can’t validate w3c compatibility


I’m new to W3org and hope to get some information.

I tried to validate a single page from my blog, but the validator reports just an error. I never geht this error before:

Sorry, I am unable to validate this document because on line 474 it contained one or more bytes that I cannot interpret as utf-8 (in other words, the bytes found are not valid values in the specified Character Encoding). Please check both the content of the file and the character encoding indication.

The error was: utf8 “\xF6” does not map to Unicode

This is the URL:

Can anybody give me a short information why i’m getting this error message? I can’t find anything wrong in the code.




Platform costs, platform restrictions no longer needed – the project “mosaic”


Finding people, selling things, finding exactly the courses I want – without internet platforms:

Knowledge exchange, finding people and groups with same interests, booking flights and beds, offering services, further education, and so on – all that without platforms, logins, costs, but straight forward and exactly the way I want it, while having all data much more under my control.


Example one:

Everybody, who wants to find other people for a knowledge exchange about a topic, can compose an internet document that contains the relevant data in the form of xml, microformat or composed in a different well-defined way (what language to use for that is to decide, see below). Let’s show the mechanism using xml. Relevant data to find compatible people are: the topic, the languages I’m able to speak, the way I’d like to communicate, maybe the place where I live:

<topic>energy autonomy of buildings</topic>
<description>I now several solutions to build buildings as energy producing units, but many questions are still open. I’d like to find out, which of them are going to be solved in the next three years and especially, which of them will not be solved as soon, so we can put more energy towards them</description>
<languages>german, french, english</languages>
<ways_of_communication>phone, email, web chat, meeting</ways_of_communication>

Finally, I place this document somewhere on the internet, where the search engines will find it.

Now we assume that the existing search services or new specialized search services indexes this document using the xml tags. So everybody can find this document be searching for a word in the topic-field, combined with a language in the language-field and a given area of places (maybe Europe – the search engine knows, which coordinates are within Europe). So other people interested in the same topic, matching my given languages and my given place can find and contact me.

Example two:

The same system works for selling beds in a hostel. You would issue an internet document for every free bed, containing all relevant information, including the exact geographical coordinates, price and a direct link allowing to book this exact bed using your own shop-system on your web site. (Here you could check if the bed really is free, in case the index of the used search engine wasn’t up-to-date.)


In fact: finding people and offering rooms in a hostel works without a platform. The same system works for offering services, further education and any thing you might imagine.

So, this could really be the internet 3.1 because of those points:

  • Nobody ever will really «see» those internet files like normally we see internet files through our browsers.

  • Those files will only be read by search engines and appear as search results in a layout, that is built by the search engine: In case of a search for knowledge exchange on top those who match all criteria, then those, that match best the topic I look for and the languages but not the way of communication and so on. Better search engines will give me a button to change the order using other criteria first. In case of a hostel bed, I would see only the beds within the given geographic field, in order of prices – including a small preview of a photo, if available, and with a button to change the order. (This is, why the idea’s name is «mosaic»: everybody issues a small piece, that is composed to a big image by a search engine.)

  • The internet is used as a database. Each database entry is one file everywhere in the internet.

  • The search engines are the query handlers to this integral, total-data database.

  • The peer to peer quality of the internet is «really realized», not controlled by platforms.


  • getting rid of restrictions and cost of platforms for user and costs for sellers

  • realizing democratic principles

  • getting maximal control of the own data

  • connecting people with similar interests or buyers and compatible sellers and vice versa and so on, independently of the fact, if a fitting platform exists or not.

To Do / Next Steps

  • defining the tag system / the language (xml or microformat or …): must be clear, determinate and extensible – contact w3 consortium

  • short feasibility study

  • coding an open source search engine specialized in indexing documents using that tag system

  • go live with a first purpose – maybe sell and buy, maybe finding people, maybe …

  • or: find out about other steps


  • What about the rating of hostels, products and so on? – Maybe, the specialized search engines can provide form for feedback and generate special files as rating entries to this all inclusive database that can be read by all search engines

  • What about rapidly changing content like free seats in a plane? – Maybe the search engines can check if the indexed files have been changed since, while composing an answer to a request.

  • There will be many more problems but also many ways to solve them.


  • This database can be a mail system, if you encrypt the content of the massage and give a kind of sign allowing the receiver to recognize the file as a mail for them.

  • Even complex social media interaction as it is performed now by Facebook®, Xing® and so on, can be realized within this total database, building a file for each message/post and using encryption, if the content is for some people only.

  • As not everybody is able to compose such internet files by hand and not everybody has a server to upload them, there will be services providing forms specialized on a type of entry (like type «knowledge exchange») including the service to upload the immediately generated file to the internet. (Maybe the specialized search engines will allow a searcher to transform a search into a file, if no matches are found: If you cannot find others, you can give others the opportunity to find you.)

November the 5th, 2014, Christof Arn
version 1.0

PS: I’d like to talk about this idea – and even more, to realize it. If this is not the appropriate place to do so, please let me know – if this is the right place, let me know what you think about this idea.

Beta Launch of new Community and Business Group site


W3C first launched the Community and Business Group site in August 2011. Today we launched a beta site to enhance the Community and Business Group experience for all.

For detailed information about the beta, including improvements to the
site and what we want to test, please see our blog post on the CG/BG beta.

We invite your comments on the beta through 31 October. Please write to, mailing list of the Community Council, which helps promote Community and Business Groups and ensure that they function smoothly.

After the beta, we plan to continue to improve Community and Business Groups, by implementing a number of anticipated changes.

We look forward to your feedback!

Ian Jacobs, Head of W3C Communications

Beta-testing the New Community and Business Group Site

Note: This was the post originally at for our July 2014 announcement. We do not anticipate maintaining the beta server and so we have copied the original post here for archival purposes.

Welcome to the beta test of the new Community and Business Group site. The address of the beta site is

The data on this site is for experimental purposes only. We invite you to propose and join groups and test various parts of the system; see the list of primary tests below. Carrying out the tests we describe below will have no affect on W3C’s production Community Group site. Email notifications are sent to the Team (and not Advisory Committee Representatives). Please note, however, that if you make changes to your W3C account (which is not directly part of the beta), those changes will have an affect on production systems.

We welcome your feedback on the beta, bug reports, and suggestion on (archive).

We welcome beta comments through 31 October 2014. We would expect to launch the revised site in November then proceed to next steps for Community and Business Groups.

What’s new

The changes in the beta reflect several years experience with user interactions with the site, as well as moving toward a more contemporary design and implementation.

  • New, responsive design.
  • Clearer user interface for joining groups.
  • New documentation for the program, better integrated in context.
  • Improved performance for lists of groups and reports.
  • Group descriptions can include markup.
  • New sort-by-name feature on participants page for each group.
  • When a group is proposed, the link that we send to the community is to the (persistent) announcement, rather than to a temporary anchor on the proposed groups page.

Primary tests

Propose a group

  • Who may do this during the beta: Anyone with a W3C account.
  • Do this from the home page (for recently created groups) or any of the current groups page (or proposed or past).

Support a group

Join a group

  • Who may do this during the beta: Anyone with a W3C account.
  • Do this from the home page (for recently created groups) or any of the current groups.

Nominate a chair

  • Who may do this during the beta: Group participants and Team.
  • Do this on the group’s participant page.
  • See how to nominate a chair.

Publish an initial draft of a report

  • Who may do this during the beta: Group Chairs (who are logged in).
  • You need a URI and a title. You can make up the URI, for example or something else. Please create a new URI for each test.
  • Links to the UI for publishing are found on each group’s home page.

Publish a final report

  • Who may do this during the beta: Group Chairs (who are logged in).
  • You need a previously published draft, a URI, and a title. You can make up the URI, for example or something else. Please create a new URI for each test.
  • Do this from the group’s home page.

Make a Final Specification Commitment

  • Who may do this during the beta: Group participants.
  • This is only possible after the Chair has published a final report.
  • Links to do this are on the group’s home page and in the blog post announcing the final report.

Write a blog post in the W3C Forum

  • Who may do this during the beta: Anyone with a W3C account.
  • Note: There is no significant difference between the production W3C Forum and the beta W3C Forum.

Leave a group

  • Who may do this during the beta: Group participants.
  • Do this from the group home page.

Detailed notes on the beta

  • When you join a group, to simplify our beta setup, we are not automatically propagating to our database the usual permissions we give group participants to edit in their group blog. Blog editing will be no different from the current production site, so we did not think it important to test in beta.
  • Rather than require usual AC Reps to approve requests to join a group, in the beta the team will play the AC Rep role for all Members.
  • We are not creating mailing lists or wikis for newly created beta groups.
  • Mails triggered by user interactions that usually go to team-community-process or public-council or w3c-archive will be sent instead to individuals on the Team. Also, we will not send email to AC Representatives.


I just joined the group but am not in the list of participants.

When you join a group, there is an approximately 2-minute delay before the information about your joining is available to all parts of the system.

I just joined the group and cannot leave.

When you join a group, there is an approximately 2-minute delay before the information about your joining is available to all parts of the system.

Where are the Community Groups I am used to seeing?

The list of groups in the beta is not the same as the real list of Community and Business Groups. If you find a group that looks real in the beta, it is because we have copied the data from the live site to be able to evaluate the beta site under “real world” conditions.

Does this beta involve any legal commitments (e.g,. by joining groups)?


What’s next for Community and Business Groups after the beta?

We anticipate a number of other improvements to CGs and BGs such as “copyright-only” groups and a simplified join process for non-Members. We do not yet have a schedule for their completion. We invite people to join the Community Council for discussions about Community and Business Groups.

One Web Two Systems

There is certainly an analogy here to the advent of personal computing in mid 1980s.

What if IBM, the champion of computing, had not opened a personal computer division alongside its core mainframe business? How long would it have taken before the mainstream got to document their work using a computer? Today, how many more years will it be before ordinary people get to use the Web to mechanise their work processes?

Do forum/W3C staff members disagree with any of the following statements about mechanisation, and if so, why?

Currently online processes are restricted to website owners.

Online banking demonstrates that a web page can be set up as a control panel for services previously provided by a physical teller. Web energy, for want of a better term, automates selections. This energy is only available to owners who have redesigned their processes so that their web site developers can energise them.

A web operating system can support diverse online processes.

Another way to organise the Web is to provide a web operating system for anyone, just as pioneers did for personal computing. At its core a public web page is used as a template control panel. Individuals open it to load their own file or register a new one. At session end, the  web page variables set by the owner are automatically converted to a specially punctuated but easy to read text file which can be stored in a location of choice.

Processes can be structured to match code that automates them.

Anyone can simply use the panel to break down any process into namesets that identify what needs to be worked on. Each has a name and a set of key/value couplets that require their values defined (the work). As each nameset acquires a unique identity, new namesets can be added to an existing nameset’s “Link” couplet. The name at the top of a nameset hierarchy represents the whole process.

Web pages can be made to work as machines.

Sliding panels overcome the diversity of names and couplets. On selection,  names and values slide into focus, names unlock related sets of values, values reveal action options, options call external code modules and a sliding trail tracks past selections for fast navigation.

A web operating system can support online collaboration.

Unlike applications based on paperwork owners can collaborate by directly coupling their nameset files via complementary key/value couplets. Access to nameset files can be arranged privately, or via a new type of search if namesets to be shared publicly are embedded in websites and tagged with grouping identities.

A web operating system can link in multimedia output options.
Visualization libraries  can use nameset couplets to output bilaterally linked multimedia displays, such as animated 3D objects, to explain, instruct and monitor. For backward compatibility  traditional documents, drawings and diagrams can also be output and files and filing systems converted to private or shared namesets.

Finally, W3C, champion of the Web, should branch out of its comfort zone and develop interoperable technologies to support mechanisation as well as websites.

Web Service Extension


This is my first post here, i hope it’s in the right place.

I have to add an extension to a web service. In another way, i have to deal with the low level source code of a web service to be able to modify the binding wsdl  -> business code and to generate a service description with other tags.

Is there any framework or  library to manipulate the low level source code of a web service?