Very well stated!!!
The ASCII-requirement is (apart from being a compact, generic, free,
non-complex, document format) indirectly forcing people to really
make diagrams simple, i.e. not put too much crap (complexity) in one
After having had to read documents from other organisations people
often cite as "SDO's", I am personally convinced that the good sides
of using ASCII completely outweights the potential negative aspects.
I suspect most people prefer reading documents that contain
diagrams, but anything that limits the complexity of a diagram -
especially for documents most often read on a computer screen - is
a feature, rather than a bug.
If a diagram is included to communicate (rather than obscure)
an idea, then readers should be able to correlate descriptive text
to the diagram - either because the diagram is simple enough that
it is not necessary to keep referring to it, or because the entire
description can be viewed while looking at the diagram.
Sometimes language limitations are a good thing, when they
are tied to specific ways of presenting information.
Ietf mailing list