Comments on RFC 580 -
Machine Readable Protocols
I fully support the requirement for machine-readable protocol documents. In my situation, the line-printer is a much more reliable device than the copying machine.
However, I object to the phrase "preferably as nls files" in RFC 580. My objection is based on the lack of conversion mechanisms INTO NLS, not to the retrieval process or NLS itself.
Most sites have their own text editors and RUNOFF's (or their equivalents). Most large protocol documents are prepared at least partially by secretarial help. Those persons should be able to prepare the documents in the home machine (or wherever) in languages with which they are familiar. There should be a general program (preferably clever, but at least generally available and predictable) for converting nicely formatted text to NLS files.
Perhaps the program which receives mail for the journal will do the trick; if so it needs further documentation beyond the mail-oriented RFC 543, and its existence and usage need to be publicised.
RECEIVED AT NIC NOVEMBER 14, 1973.