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Re: Why Microsoft's authoritative=true won't work and is a bad idea

From: Boris Zbarsky <bzbarsky@MIT.EDU>
Date: Mon, 07 Jul 2008 19:31:03 -0400
Message-ID: <4872A737.4060203@mit.edu>
To: Henrik Nordstrom <henrik@henriknordstrom.net>
CC: HTTP Working Group <ietf-http-wg@w3.org>, "public-html@w3.org" <public-html@w3.org>

Henrik Nordstrom wrote:
>> Excuse me?  "Ignorance"?  Everyone involved knew exactly what they were doing. 
>> There were just no good solutions; the small amount of sniffing added seemed 
>> like the least bad of a set of bad choices.
> 
> I obviously disagree, but that's my opinion.

You're entitled to it, and I should clarify that the above only applies to the 
cases in which I've been able to see the reasoning process that led to the 
decisions (namely Gecko and Webkit).

> 0) The specifications makes sense and unambious to implement

Assuming you meant "unambiguous", I agree.  If you meant something else, what 
did you mean?

>> 5)  At no point in between here and there is a UA required to do something
>>      that would cause its users to stop using it (an obvious non-starter
>>      from a UA point of view).
>> 6)  At no point in between here and there is a server required to do
>>      something that would cause administrators to stop using it (also an
>>      obvious non-starter, I would think).
> 
> Yes, with some reservations for 5 & 6. I do expect UAs and servers to be
> willing to correct bugs, even if correcting those bugs would cause some
> slight interoperability issues with other broken implementations at the
> benefit of enabling correct interoperability with correct
> implementations. Even if this results in some users shifting one way or
> another.

So you're asking people to shoot themselves in the foot for the common good. 
While some may be willing to, in general that's a tough sell if the shooting is 
significant enough.

Put another way, I can't think of a browser that would be willing to, say, 
sacrifice 5% of market share on this issue.  I suspect sacrificing a single user 
is acceptable.  The line is somewhere in between.

>   - Simplicity.

Which is nice if possible, of course.  Are we talking simplicity of 
specification, of implementation, or of deployment?

>   - No second-guessing or non-obvious sideeffects. If something is said
> it is said and should be trusted to be correct.

This is nice to have, yes.

>   - Consistent. As few special cases as possible.

Again, this is nice to have.

-Boris
Received on Monday, 7 July 2008 23:31:52 GMT

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