Specification links and BCD

(Eric Shepherd) #1

I was asked in IRC about this and figured I’d check in to see what the latest thinking is on this.

Should we have a spec_url entry in each feature and subfeature? It’s suggested that having this could be very useful, removing the need to do indirection through MDN to reach the spec if you have to get at that.

This is doubly true since we are not very consistent really about including the mdn_url field, which I think we should make mandatory rather than optional, at least for top-level features if not for features and subfeatures both. It can have a special value of some kind (false, perhaps) if there is no page on MDN about the subject (or possibly instead if there isn’t and isn’t expected to be).

I’m personally on the fence about the spec_url field, but definitely think we should consider making the existing mdn_url mandatory.


(Chris Mills) #2

I definitely think the mdn_url should be mandatory, and can see how the spec_url field could be useful. We could just use BCD to generate the spec links, for example. But there may well be places where we’ll want spec links but not compat data. And it would complicate and make the BCD less pure.

(Jean-Yves) #3

Hi all!

  There are two different issues here:

  1) spec_url: I think just having one entry here will not make it.

There are often competing specs, or a feature can be scattered in
multiple specs. I would like to have all the content needed to
generate the spec table in a machine-readable format, but the
simple “spec_url” entry will not be flexible enough. I think we
should actually migrate all the spec data we have in another
repository, keeping the same ids for feature, but with its own
schema and maintenance. That’s a large project though, and far
less useful to the end-user than BCD, so not high in priority.

  2) mdn_url: I have a liminary question here: you say that we are

not consistent about including the “mdn_url” field. I think we
have been pretty consistent in our reviews here.

  Thanks for bringing this subject up!

(Eric Shepherd) #4

I personally do agree that the spec URLs are lower priority by a good margin. I also agree that that information should be tracked separately; perhaps once BCD is done we can look at it. I could see a project to get the spec information into a Github repo, so that we can retire our current InterfaceData, GroupData, etc.

As for the MDN URLs, I have found it to be fairly rare to see it used on sub-features, at least in the stuff I’ve updated in the past. I know there are times I’ve omitted it, not having realized it was an option for subfeatures until recently.