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Re: [CT] Using robots.txt to flag an adapting site

From: Sean Owen <srowen@google.com>
Date: Sat, 29 Sep 2007 10:06:00 -0400
Message-ID: <e920a71c0709290706t6570d625k2f042a3e96c1e950@mail.gmail.com>
To: "Jo Rabin" <jrabin@mtld.mobi>
Cc: public-bpwg-ct@w3.org, public-powderwg@w3.org, BPWG <member-bpwg@w3.org>, "Rotan Hanrahan" <rotan.hanrahan@mobileaware.com>

On 9/29/07, Jo Rabin <jrabin@mtld.mobi> wrote:
> I "don't disagree" with use of the link header. However I am not sure it
> has as much flexibility as one would like. The semantics are also a
> little cloudy in my view - is it really appropriate to infer from the
> fact that there is link specifying an alternate with media handheld,
> that this version is not itself suitable for handheld? I might
> conceivably have versions for desktop, iPhone, series 60 and DDC, for
> instance.

It gets better -- really, the suggestion is to put the link to the
handheld version *in the handheld version.* The idea is that if a
transcoder is about to transcode a page talking about a handheld
alternate, it should merely get out of the way and redirect to that
target. Hence it becomes a means for a mobile page to say "hands off."

An HTTP header is possible though the advantage of <link> is that can
be authored into the page. Also it does have the desired effect on
GWT.


> A plea not to ignore the work of the POWDER group here who as I
> understand it have been chartered to replace robots.txt and who I know
> have a way of describing parts of site by URI matching. Various POWDER
> documents have been elevated recently, and I expect you'll find them a
> jolly good read.

I had also missed Rotan's point entirely about robots.txt being
site-wide mechanism, which is valuable. And now I agree with this
point, that this becomes close to a special case of POWDER, and a
lovely first application?
Received on Saturday, 29 September 2007 14:06:16 GMT

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