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RE: webDAV - web authoring or flexible two-way web interface ?

From: Lisa Dusseault <lisa@xythos.com>
Date: Mon, 5 Mar 2001 18:16:48 -0800
To: <sconnelly@ordsvy.gof.uk>, "WebDAV WG" <w3c-dist-auth@w3.org>
Message-ID: <HPELJFCBPHIPBEJDHKGKGEOGCAAA.lisa@xythos.com>
I've looked at applications like this in the past.  Since WebDAV can have a
list of properties and values for every resource, one can treat a directory
full of resources much the same as a table in a database.  I don't really
understand the architecture of your database, but you could map it to web
resources like this:
 - give every unique id a unique URL
 - Allow users to PROPPATCH that unique URL with new point/line/area data
 - Allow users to PROPFIND those items?? SEARCH??

You can still build your dynamic web pages exactly the way they work now.
WebDAV is intended to interact nicely with dynamic web pages; the hard part
is to "get" the source of the dynamic web page, to edit that source rather
than the finished output.  Different web servers do this in different ways,
I believe.

I'm not sure what benefit WebDAV would bring you in this scenario, though.
It doesn't sound like you need to edit the source of the dynamic web pages,
it sounds like you need to make changes to the databaase only.  Do users
need to be able to browse the list of IDs with a client like Windows
Explorer?  Probably not.  Do they need to be able to lock a unique id/entry
before editing it?  Maybe WebDAV would help there...

Overall, it sounds like HTML forms are simpler for solving your problem than
WebDAV, unless there are features of WebdAV that help you out in other ways.
There are also umpteen products for connecting databases to the web in much
the manner you describe -- they may even help automatically build the HTML
forms to some extent.  These products do not need nor use WebDAV in general.

lisa

> -----Original Message-----
> From: w3c-dist-auth-request@w3.org
> [mailto:w3c-dist-auth-request@w3.org]On Behalf Of Jim Whitehead
> Sent: Monday, March 05, 2001 1:59 PM
> To: WebDAV WG
> Subject: FW: webDAV - web authoring or flexible two-way web interface ?
>
>
> Accidentally caught by the spam filter.  I've added Stuart to the accept2
> list, so future emails will get sent through to the list.
>
> - Jim
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Connelly, Stuart [mailto:sconnelly@ordsvy.gov.uk]
> Sent: Monday, March 05, 2001 6:38 AM
> To: 'w3c-dist-auth@w3.org'
> Subject: [Moderator Action] webDAV - web authoring or flexible two-way
> web interface ?
>
>
>
> Can I use this forum to ask a dumb question? Already have....
>
> Say I have a large database of geographic features;
> points/lines/areas.  All
> features have a unique id.  The supply of data to read access clients is
> based on a cgi script executing a query and then returning
> dynamic content.
> (e.g. All objects in a given rectangle).
>
> Now I want to give clients the ability to update this database
> via the web.
> One method would be to define lock/transaction interfaces that embed
> information within HTTP POST messages. (I think this is termed
> RPC-via-POST?).
>
> Perhaps another method would be to use the WebDAV extensions. But reading
> the WebDAV information on the web it isn't clear if WebDAV can be used for
> dynamic web pages - it all seems geared-up for editing of text pages. Am I
> barking up the wrong tree in looking at WebDAV?
>
> Out of my depth but not drowning yet,
>
> Stuart Connelly
>
Received on Monday, 5 March 2001 21:17:59 GMT

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