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RFC2821bis-02 Issue 24: ABNF overhaul

2007-04-22 13:17:32

--On Sunday, 22 April, 2007 20:54 +0200 Frank Ellermann
<nobody(_at_)xyzzy(_dot_)claranet(_dot_)de> wrote:
Yes.  We need it to convert all now still pseudo-ABNF lines
 MAIL FROM:<reverse-path> [SP <mail-parameters> ] <CRLF>

into proper ABNF like

 mail    = "MAIL FROM:" <reverse-path> [SP <mail-parameters> ]

after an introduction in the direction of

 command = hello / mail / rcpt / data / rset / quit ; etc.

We need to make a decision as to where to draw the line on this,
if at all.

Pro: Clearly, a complete ABNF cleanup, to make the set closed
and consistent and, ideally, to eliminate and formalize as many
of the comments as possible would be a nice thing.

Con: The odds of being able to do this in a reasonable amount of
time and to do so without introducing new errors --either within
2821bis or between 2821bis and 2822[bis?] are, based on prior
experience, not high.  It is already clear to many people that I
can't do it and get it right so this would probably require
freezing the document, handing the source off to someone else
and having him or her make the changes, and then having everyone
do an in-depth check.  That is more or less what was done the
last time (during DRUMS) except that the "in-depth check" part
obviously failed to meet people's criteria today.

It is not clear how many of the current idiosyncrasies --as
distinct from outright errors, which we are fixing-- are
impeding consistent and interoperable implementations.  My
guess, based on the empirical evidence, is "very, very, few". 

So I will leave it up to Tony and Lisa to figure out how to find
the right balance here, but my guess is that it represents an
order of magnitude change in the amount of work we otherwise
still need to get done to produce a document that can be


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