EPUB 3 Working Group Telco — Minutes

Date: 2022-12-08

See also the Agenda and the IRC Log


Present: David Hall, Wendy Reid, Toshiaki Koike, Dave Cramer, Masakazu Kitahara, Matthew Chan, Brady Duga, Shinya Takami (高見真也), Matt Garrish, Murata Makoto



Chair: Wendy Reid, Dave Cramer

Scribe(s): Matthew Chan


1. Testing Updates.

Wendy Reid: thanks to everyone who submitted test results this week.
… we have a lot more clarity on how well features are supported.
… the biggest relief is that the fallback situation is not as bad as we thought.
… we don’t have full support for record linking, changes to dir attribute in package.
… its a new feature, so that’s tricky.
… and it applies mostly to RS implementations using languages like arabic, hewbrew.

Brady Duga: we’re launched in Arabic speaking countries, but most of that is left to the system to decide which direction.
… we display those titles in the store, but we don’t support this setting on these elements.

Wendy Reid: epub css classes didn’t make it.

Brady Duga: i’ll try to get to that test today.
… is today the cut off?.

Wendy Reid: no, but it would be good to get results in. We want to be making decisions about these features.
… the ones with the dashed outline around them are at risk of being under implemented.
… but none of them make us scared to mark them as under-implemented.

Brady Duga: the ones i was worried about were the MO ones. It’s optional, but they are MUSTs..
… poorly implemented because most of these contain floating text.

Wendy Reid: i had a hard time with our new renderer, but the android tests are incoming, and I think they will pass.

Brady Duga: we don’t support floating text, but we would pass if they were fxl books.

Wendy Reid: one of them is fxl.

Brady Duga: it would be weird to mark these at risk.
… since MO is pretty well supported.

Wendy Reid: we’re waiting on more test results from Kobo, and I reached out to Lars re. Colibrio.
… i have a feeling Colibrio has good support.
… re. dir attribute we think its only a matter of time/native RS coverage.
… other tests, like linked records, can get marked under-implemented without devastating consequences.

Dave Cramer: no additional comments.

Shinya Takami (高見真也): ditto.

Wendy Reid: it would be good to have more tests, if only for publishers to be able to see coverage on certain features.
… it was also eye opening as an implementor to see what did and didn’t work.
… also found bugs in epubcheck using these test.

Dave Cramer: testing is good.

Wendy Reid: i also fixed the tests which were not supposed to have epubcheck errors but did anyway.

Dave Cramer: one of the errors was id values that started with numbers.
… in the package document tests.

Murata Makoto: this was a holdover from XHTML, a long time ago.

Wendy Reid: for epubcheck, the error message for ids starting with numbers wasn’t super clear.
… the error text was something about a colon.
… ‘check that your id does not start with non-alphanumeric’ might be clearer.

Matt Garrish: not sure where it comes from, but epubcheck can overwrite that.

2. consider specifying how EPUB interacts with the MIME sniffing standard (issue epub-specs#2491)

See github issue epub-specs#2491.

Dave Cramer: this was pointed out by Romain that as part of the HTML it says you have to determine what kind of resource it is because HTTP headers might be wrong.
… browsers realized that they might have to figure out what resources really are.
… every browser did that differently, which resulted in interop issues.
… so a algorithm was written in a spec.
… epub doesn’t currently say how this should happen.
… but it doesn’t seem like there’s a problem we need to solve here.
… it might be good to clean this up, but adding normative language about this now would delay going to PR.
… we would need tests, could invalidate implementations.
… leaning towards leaving it for now.

Brady Duga: agree. There’s not a problem..
… it is specified what should happen, because we have UA, and UAs are supposed to used MIMESNIFF per HTML.
… one of the inputs to the algorithm is ‘specified MIME type’, so question is should that be the value from the manifest?.
… and it seems that that value will get ignored anyway, that’s no why it’s there.
… that manifest value is there for fallbacks.

Dave Cramer: given the varieties of approaches that can be taken (e.g. HTTP server, etc.), and do we have to mess with that?.
… feels like we should not go there unless we’re solving an actual interop problem.

Matt Garrish: don’t like the idea of pointing out that there is no standard for this until we come up with a solution.

Dave Cramer: i’ve been working on epub for a decade and I didn’t realize the MIMESNIFF was an issue until it was raised.
… my inclination is not to make any changes now.

Matt Garrish: defer it.

Dave Cramer: if someone can come up with a test that behaves different in different RS, or finds an example in the real world, definitely bring it up in the next round.

Proposed resolution: Defer issue 2491 until evidence of an issue is found. (Wendy Reid)

Brady Duga: +1.

Dave Cramer: +1.

Shinya Takami (高見真也): +1.

Wendy Reid: +1.

Matthew Chan: +1.

Matt Garrish: +1.

Toshiaki Koike: +1.

David Hall: +1.

Resolution #1: Defer issue 2491 until evidence of an issue is found.

Dave Cramer: Makoto: +1.

3. What do we do after EPUB 3.3 (living standard, ISO)?.

Murata Makoto: +present.

Wendy Reid: this is about a decisions we have to make as a WG. Do we turn spec into a living standard?.
… we could publish changes to epub without all the overhead of this initial process. Aimed at addressing errata, clarifications, etc..
… if we needed to publish a new version that would be a different process.
… we would need a maintenance working group to do living standard.
… this group might work on bringing our family of specs to ISO thru PAS process.

Murata Makoto: my motivation is to have ISO standard and W3C standards in sync as far as epub is concerned.
… ISO has an older version of epub. JIS has version 1.0, meanwhile ISO has epub 3.1 (i think).
… if we don’t submit 3.3 and ally 1.1 to ISO, then some parts of the world will continue to think these old ISO versions are authoritative.
… to avoid confusion, i think it is very important to submit epub 3.3. and ally 1.1 to be published as ISO standard via PAS.
… PAS is a very light weight standard, mgarrish will not have to do anything.
… the ISO will attach a cover page. Like how WCAG 2.0 was published as ISO standard.
… if ISO members vote to change something, W3C has right to withdraw the submission.
… so I am quite sure that nobody will try to change epub at that stage. They would rather raise such issues now.
… if we announce our intention from the beginning, I am quite sure ISO will not try to change anything.
… if this submission is not made, then I will have a real problem. There are already concerns about differences between a11y 1.0 and 1.1. It is not possible to create epub that conforms to both without some tricks.
… important for JIS.
… and important for countries that do not have national standards too.

Wendy Reid: Cristina also mentioned that it would be easier for EU if 3.3 were ISO standard.
… audiobooks is also a living standard, but only a single errata change has been made in two years.

Dave Cramer: say we publish 3.3 as REC, and there was an ISO version, how easy would it be to re-publish ISO if there were change under living standard?.

Murata Makoto: for Unicode as an example, ISO publish new version every 2 or 3 years, and they can also do amendments to handle errata.

Matt Garrish: a benefit of living standard is that we don’t have a backup of errata issues until we do a new version.
… we can clarify things more quickly.
… it would be a huge benefit for the standard.

Wendy Reid: there’s also an element where it teeters on the edge of errata vs feature change, but that’s still lighter weight than the whole CR/PR/REC process.
… still allows us to balance the necessity of making changes.

Matt Garrish: are there levels of changes that you are allowed to make under living standard before you are required to get approval again?.

Wendy Reid: yes, there are 4 levels of change.
… 1 and 2 are basically errata. 3 is making your change, followed by AC approval process. 4 is full-on version number change.
… the errata types are easy to do under living standard.

Matt Garrish: a lot tends to be errata. No expected major feature changes at this point.

Wendy Reid: mgarrish is there anything you need us to consider?.

Murata Makoto: I would like a decision on whether to go ahead with PAS process, though maybe not today.

Wendy Reid: this will be the last meeting for 2022. Next wg meeting will be 1st week of Jan.
… tentatively we will vote to go to PR then, and i will also throw in vote whether to go to ISO.
… we will have more information then.
… is that okay, in terms of notice?.

Murata Makoto: i can contact the iso secretariat for an informal conversation.

Dave Cramer: makes sense to decide after we go to PR.

4. end of the year.

Wendy Reid: okay, this is the last meeting of the year, we’ll reconvene next year when we vote for going to PR.
… if you have test results, please submit them now.
… tests should be finalized now.
… have a lovely holiday everyone! Good work!.

Dave Cramer: thanks to wendyreid and mgarrish!.

Murata Makoto: thanks everyone!.
… and epubcheck implementors.

Wendy Reid: latest version is out now, so please test that too if you haven’t.

Dave Cramer: it will be harder to change after its integrated in ingest pipelines.
… Happy holidays everyone!.

Dave Cramer: RRSAgent: bye.

5. Resolutions