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Re: Revisiting Authoritative Metadata (was: The failure of Appendix C as a transition technique)

From: Martin J. Dürst <duerst@it.aoyama.ac.jp>
Date: Fri, 22 Feb 2013 18:42:51 +0900
Message-ID: <51273D9B.7060508@it.aoyama.ac.jp>
To: Robin Berjon <robin@w3.org>
CC: Larry Masinter <masinter@adobe.com>, Henri Sivonen <hsivonen@iki.fi>, "www-tag@w3.org List" <www-tag@w3.org>
On 2013/02/22 18:31, Robin Berjon wrote:
> On 22/02/2013 10:29 , "Martin J. Dürst" wrote:
>> In that scenario, how would you get a browser to display any format with
>> such a magic number,... as plain text? Many formats, HTML and XHTML
>> included, are at the same time plain text.
>
> Obviously, for legacy reason we're stuck with media types forever. But
> this doesn't mean we should propagate that to new formats, or claim that
> it was a good idea.

I don't want to claim they are an extremely good idea, but given the 
requirement I gave above, I don't see anything better. And in my 
question above, I didn't specifically include backwards compatibility 
issues. So I'll ask it again, with some clarifications:

If you/we were able to redesign the Web (or let's go a bit further and 
say "all of computer infrastructure"), then how would you get a browser 
to display any format with such a magic number,... as plain text? Many 
formats, HTML and XHTML included, are at the same time plain text.

The only solution I can imagine at the moment is to have explicit binary 
magic numbers for everything, including plain text, and to explicitly 
change this magic number on the sending side. But somehow, that goes 
against by long-time experience with the advantages of using plain-text 
based formats for a wide range of things from marked-up text to 
programming languages to protocols.

But maybe you have a better idea?

Regards,   Martin.
Received on Friday, 22 February 2013 09:43:30 GMT

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