&http-last-modified; (crazy idea of the day)

Daniel W. Connolly (connolly@beach.w3.org)
Fri, 15 Dec 1995 15:07:15 -0500


Message-Id: <199512152007.PAA07047@beach.w3.org>
To: www-html@w3.org
Subject: &http-last-modified; (crazy idea of the day)
Date: Fri, 15 Dec 1995 15:07:15 -0500
From: "Daniel W. Connolly" <connolly@beach.w3.org>


Just a hair-brained idea that I don't want to forget:

Consider:

	200 document follows:
	Last-Modified: Monday, 11-Dec-95 22:04:31 GMT

	<title>Dan's Hair-brained Idea of the Day</title>

	...
	<address>
	&http-last-modified;
	</address>

displays ala:


	Dan's Hair-brained Idea of the Day

	...

	Monday, 11-Dec-95 22:04:31 GMT


Other possibilities:

	200 document follows
	Access-Count: 12312
	Access-Count-Since: Monday, 11-Dec-95 22:04:31 GMT

	...
	This page has been accessed &http-access-count; times
	since &http-access-count-since;.


It's a nifty idea that would save a lot of trouble and automate a lot
of stuff that folks do, and increse cache effectiveness. Access count
would require support from servers, but for example, it should be a
pretty straightforward Apache module:

	(1) add a config directive that listst the documents/directories
	where you want to keep access counts.
	(2) keep a DBM database that maps document->count
	(3) add the Access-Count header for documents in the dbm database.

It ought to take about an hour to hack up client support. Any takers?
I started adding support to grail (see http://www.python.org/ and
search for grail) but I'm having trouble getting at the http headers
from inside the parser. I think I need to pass them from the Reader
object to the Viewer object, and then have the Parser object ask the
viewer.  Hmmm... I wonder how this interacts with caching.

Dan