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RE: ETags?

From: Jim Whitehead <ejw@soe.ucsc.edu>
Date: Wed, 19 Jan 2005 15:56:23 -0800
Message-Id: <200501192356.j0JNuPw4019406@services.cse.ucsc.edu>
To: "'WebDAV WG\)'" <w3c-dist-auth@w3.org>

With all due respect to the engineer from Day spending a couple of enjoyable
hours procrastinating on the DAV list today, I disagree.

I pressed for this language because:

- a statement about dead properties in this situation without a similar
statement about live properties begs the question of how live properties
should behave,
- not making a statement about live properties here is ambiguous, and could
reasonably be interpreted in multiple contradictory ways (silence = intended
assent, silence = intended prohibition), and leads to implementors trying to
read spec writers' minds,
- the additional language makes it clear that servers have this additional
design freedom, if they so desire.

The comment about testability is a red herring here, since the requirement
is at the design level. Given a specific live property, it is certainly
possible to test whether it has a different value for different bindings.

I'll point to the long discussions we've had on this issue as evidence that
lack of specification language on this issue does not lead to experienced
engineers drawing the same conclusion about the behavior of live properties
across multiple bindings.

> I don't like meaningless SHOULDs.  How is an implementation 
> supposed to test compliance with such a requirement?  I would 
> prefer that the specification say nothing about the value of 
> a live property, since live properties are (by definition) 
> not controlled by the client and thus not subject to 
> interoperability constraints aside from whatever may be in 
> their definition. 

- Jim
Received on Wednesday, 19 January 2005 23:56:27 GMT

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