Content negotiation draft 04 submitted

We have just submitted version 04 of the transparent content
negotiation draft to the internet drafts editor.  I have made .txt,
.html, and versions with changebars available at


Our tentative planning is to submit this draft, or a revision thereof,
to the to the IESG as a Proposed Standard after discussion at the
December IETF.


        HTTP allows one to put multiple versions of the same
        information under a single URL.  Transparent content
        negotiation is a mechanism, layered on top of HTTP, for
        automatically selecting the best version when the URL is
        accessed.  This enables the smooth deployment of new web data
        formats and markup tags.

        Design goals for transparent content negotiation include: low
        overhead on the request message size, downwards compatibility,
        extensibility, enabling the rapid introduction of new areas of
        negotiation, scalability, low cost for minimal support, end
        user control, and good cacheability.

Revision History

   Major functional changes with respect to version 03 are:

    - The model for the caching of variant lists has been changed
      extensively. (The previous version had a problem with downwards

    - The definition of the Negotiate header has been changed to
      include a `trans' keyword.

    - The form `ftag=<N-M>', with N-M a range of numeric values, was
      added to the feature expressions and feature predicates.

  Major changes in the presentation are:

    - Feature tag registration is now covered in a separate draft

    - Some new explanatory material was added

    - Some existing text has been improved

Happy reading!


Received on Thursday, 21 November 1996 16:53:45 UTC