W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > ietf-http-wg-old@w3.org > May to August 1995

Re: Byte ranges -- formal spec proposal

From: Brian Behlendorf <brian@organic.com>
Date: Thu, 18 May 1995 12:42:12 -0700 (PDT)
To: David - Morris <dwm@shell.portal.com>
Cc: John Franks <john@math.nwu.edu>, luotonen@netscape.com, http-wg%cuckoo.hpl.hp.com@hplb.hpl.hp.com
Message-Id: <Pine.3.89.9505181237.q15253-0100000@eat.organic.com>
On Thu, 18 May 1995, David - Morris wrote:
> On Thu, 18 May 1995, John Franks wrote:
> > Two issues have been raised that I would like to hear more discussion
> > on:
> > 
> > Should byteranges be 0 based or 1 based.  My initial view was that
> 
> It really depends on who is providing the values. Only a subset of
> programmers think of the first object in an ordered set as being
> the 0th object. People think of '1' (one) as the first object. If
> there is any expectation that people will enter the values, one
> is the correct choice.

Well, we do have to settle on a standard though, since we're going to 
rely proxy servers to reassemble full documents from byte ranges.  At 
least that was my interpretation of Ari's proposal - the proxy needs to 
know if "1-end" means the complete document or not.

Now we get into some other subtleties - can we really reconstruct a 
document from its fragments?  This seems to be the biggest selling point 
of standardizing this whole thing - not only can a proxy that has
byterange 50-100 of a document serve up a request for byterange 60-80, 
but if a proxy had 50-100 and 90-120, it could conceivably service a 
request for 80-110 (*only* if the last-modified times matched though).  
Okay, so doing this for byteranges isn't a big leap conceptually, but 
what about for the other fragments proposed?  Can we do a similar 
composition for lines, for paragraphs, for words?  Will "paragraph 3" 
promise to be everything up to "paragraph 4"?  I guess this is a quality 
of implementation issue.

Something in the back of my head is screaming "Hytime". 

	Brian

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Received on Thursday, 18 May 1995 12:44:22 EDT

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