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Content Negotiation of XHTML Modules

From: Robin Lionheart <lionheart@robinlionheart.com>
Date: Fri, 26 Jan 2001 16:08:18 -0500
Message-ID: <034401c087dc$1e793a30$a078add1@RobinsNest>
To: <www-html@w3.org>
Now that XHTML Basic is standardized, we may begin to see the introduction
of user agents which support only the modules in XHTML Basic, not all the
features of XHTML 1.0. The MIME types "text/html" and
"application/xhtml+xml" could refer to any combination of those modules.

XHTML Basic user agents should be able to communicate to web servers that
they understand the Structure, Text, Hypertext, List, Basic Forms, Basic
Tables, Image, Object, Metainformation, Link, and Base Modules.

It seems to me that neglected "Accept-Features:" HTTP header could be used
for this purpose. RFC 2295, which defines "Accept-Features:", uses the media
features 'tables' and 'frames' in its examples. It would not be a big leap
to associate the 'tables' media feature with the Tables Module, and the
'frames' media feature with the Frames Module.

Along similar lines, 'applets' could stand for the Applet Module, 'objects'
for the Object Module, 'scripting' for the Scripting Module, and so forth.
Or perhaps it would be better to use a standard prefix and name media
features like 'xhtml-basic-tables', 'xhtml-tables', &c.

Thus we could yet enjoy a future when web servers determine browser
capabilities without user-agent sniffers and databases.
Received on Friday, 26 January 2001 16:08:36 GMT

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