Re: Logging content sugestions
This is a response to a posting that I did not see any response to.
On Thu, 14 Mar 1996, Gerald L. Despain wrote:
> 1. In the extended log format it would be useful to allow a directive to specify the
> identity of the site for which the log was produced. This would facilitate the
> prepartion of analysis reports on aggregations of logs from different web sites.
I think that including general information in the preamble of the log is
a good idea.
> 4. It would be useful to allow logging of various forms of user or session id,
> including the ideas as defined in the working draft on session-id. In general, there
> are the following kinds of "id" that may be available and logged:
> Persists only for a single session. No other user information associated with the id.
Is this the session id? It would be appropriate.
> Persists between sessions. Allows recognition of when the same person returns to the
> site. No other user information associated with the id.
> Persists between sessions. Allows the identification of the individual
> in external databases, such as a customer database.
1. I think that user-id and customer-id can be combined into one. If you
need a specific id for the customer database, that should fall outside of the
log. customer-id usually fall as an inside company id and should be kept as
If you need to grab a specific customer-id, I suggest a secure link. Either
have a log-in page or extend the cookie mechanism in order to let the client
system define a user-id and customer-id cookie for that site. Any which
way, I think you should keep the customer-id out of the log.
2. How are we defining a user-id. A random number is not guaranteed to
be unique so ones has to be provided. Is that id supposed to be site
unique or global.
> Persists only for a single session. Associates some demographic information with the
> user. Does not allow for identification of any personal identification such as name
> or address.
> Persists between sessions. Associates some demographic information with the user.
> Does not allow for identification of any personal identification such as name or
I believe that the information provided by *-user-id can be maintained by
the site outside of the log. The deomgraphic information can be stored
externally and tied to the user-id. When the log is exported, the
user-id can be replaced by or augmented with the demographic
information. The idea is for the site to ask "if the user would like to
give demographic info" once for an unknown user-id and not do it under
Magnus Mengelbier tel. Sweden + (0)40-29 39 12
Mathematical Statistics e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
Lund University, Sweden email@example.com