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Re: Microsoft's "I mean it" content-type parameter

From: Frank Ellermann <nobody@xyzzy.claranet.de>
Date: Sun, 6 Jul 2008 18:00:54 +0200
To: ietf-http-wg@w3.org
Message-ID: <g4qq2u$2bt$1@ger.gmane.org>

Eric Lawrence wrote:

> keep in mind, however, that most folks (even the ultra-web engaged
> on these lists) see but a small fraction of the web, especially 
> considering private address space/intranets, etc.

Yes, but a general philosophical problem with any "do what I mean"
flag applies:

(1) A relevant fraction of the Web got it wrong, using x=y where
    they should have said x=z.
(2) Therefore you couldn't trust that x=y means x=y, introducing
    some "what is x divination".
(3) That annoyed another relevant fraction of the Web who really
    want x=y when they say x=y.
(4) You add an "I mean it" flag for (3), sticking to "divination"
    as default for (1).
(5) In theory protocols, software, and config files are upgraded
    to add those new "I mean it" flags everywhere.  As that is a
    worldwide upgrade stunt you lose a major fraction of the Web
    sticking to (1) or (3) without this flag.
(6) Another major fraction does what you want, among them a part
    of (1) now saying "x=y I mean it" when they clearly want x=z.
(7) SNAFU, your flag made it worse.

Some problems can't be solved in specifications because it's a
problem with folks never reading specifications.

Received on Sunday, 6 July 2008 15:59:12 UTC

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