DR 13-0014 "PML: omissions and inconsistencies in the specification of attributes"

Francis Cave francis at franciscave.com
Tue Nov 21 01:55:36 CET 2017

Hi Aarti


The minutes of the Geneva meeting include the following:


DR 13-0014 “PML: omissions and inconsistencies in the specification of


New questions for MS experts re animMotion:


1. Does the ptsTypes attribute always contain a list of ptsTypes whose
length is determined by the number of segments in the path?


2. Can the ptsTypes attribute contain an empty list, “”?


New question for MS experts re cmd:


3. Please confirm that if @cmd is omitted or has an empty string value,
regardless of the value of @type, the element has no effect and is
equivalent to the element being omitted, and that no other interpretation
makes sense.


Assigned to Aarti.


I have now done what I should have done in Geneva, which is to read the
implementer notes in [MSOI29500].pdf. 


This is what they have to say about @ptsTypes on element §19.5.4 animMotion:


d. The standard states that the ptsTypes attribute specifies the types of
points in the path attribute. 


In Office, the ptsTypes attribute additionally describes what the motion
path should look like around the current point. This attribute has no effect
on the playing of the animation. It is only used when the motion path is
edited in Office. 


Each character in this string sequentially maps to a point defined in the
path string. If there are more entries than points, the extra entries are
ignored. If there are fewer entries than points, the extra points are to be
treated as follows: If the action after the point is a Line To, then the
point is treated as an ‘F’ (corner line). Otherwise, the point will be
treated as an ‘f’ (corner curve).


I think we should therefore reconsider the questions to the PowerPoint team
experts, since the final paragraph of the implementer note implies that the
answer to Q1 is clearly “yes”, and the answer to Q2 is clearly “yes” as


There are no implementer notes on @cmd on element §19.5.28 cmd, so Q3 is
still worth asking.


Regarding @ptsTypes on animMotion, I suggest that we replace Q1 and Q2 with
a new question: can the PowerPoint team see any reason for not tightening
the schema so that the string value of @ptsTypes is constrained to match the
following pattern: “[AFTSafts]*” ?


Kind regards,




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