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RE: ETags Re: The range of the HTTP dereference function

From: Larry Masinter <LMM@acm.org>
Date: Sun, 31 Mar 2002 11:35:37 -0800
To: "'Jeff Bone'" <jbone@jump.net>
Cc: "Jeffrey Mogul" <mogul@pa.dec.com>, <www-tag@w3.org>
Message-ID: <000201c1d8eb$3c47b0d0$6ace8642@larrypad>
> But ETags don't really fully solve the problem, do they?  
(reference to preprint of Jeff Mogul's www2002 paper).

ETags don't fully solve "the" problem, but they solve
"a" problem. That they can't reliably be used with
range requests, compression, delta encoding, etc. is
a controllable problem: don't do it.

"Doctor, Doctor, it hurts when I use etags with
 range requests, compression, and delta encoding."

Jeff makes a useful analysis and lays out a direction
for a solution, but I'm not sure there's a compelling
case for it being "worth it" to add another layer of
tags. It might be simpler to just disallow late-stage
ETags and use the ETag header for what Jeff wants to
call Instance Tags.

I started to not include "www-tag" on my reply,
but I think there's a meta issue for the TAG:

I think Jeff's paper (and Bala's book, for that matter)
call attention to the fact that HTTP isn't "done".
While there's a lot of attention on "XML protocol"
and dealing with the problems using HTTP for things
other than the classical web, since HTTP-NG, there's
been no current charatered activity working through
the HTTP-for-web issues. (This is out of scope for
WEBI and OPES, I think.)

Larry
-- 
http://larry.masinter.net
Received on Sunday, 31 March 2002 14:36:18 GMT

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