At 2:20 PM -0400 8/23/08, John C Klensin wrote:
--On Saturday, 23 August, 2008 14:55 +0200 Frank Ellermann
John C Klensin wrote:
My hope is that we can discuss and figure out whether
the community likes and will accept the general idea.
What *is* the general idea ? If it's "attaching" one
or more figures / images to an RFC I'm fine with it.
That is it. No intention to solve all possible problems, just
what appears to us to be a large and growing subset in which
pretty-printed figures, images, and the like would significantly
add to RFC comprehensibility without having to reopen the debate
about alternate base formats, searchability, etc., etc.
While it is easy to agree with the "no intention to solve all
possible problems", the proposed solution is much more difficult than
is needed, and is also prone to problems in the long term.
From the draft, the problem to be solved is:
Documents in the RFC series normally use only plain-text ASCII
characters and a fixed-width font. However, there is sometimes a
need to supplement the ASCII text with graphics or picture images.
Given that problem statement, a simple solution would be for RFCs to
be able to reference art files archived by the RFC Editor using
format-neutral URLs. Initially, those art files could be GIFs, PNGs,
or PDFs. Years from now, when there are no commonly-available readers
for a particular image type that was used earlier, the RFC Editor of
the time can convert the old images to newer ones.
An example of a format-neutral URL might be
This proposal takes no changes from the current format for Internet
Drafts or RFCs. It does require that the RFC Editor add some tools
and maintain URLs in a consistent manner, but that is what they are
paid to do. It also avoids the problems that have been listed so far.
--Paul Hoffman, Director
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