Re: Kickoff application manifest work

On Tue, 25 Jun 2013 16:49:09 +0400, Anne van Kesteren <>  

> On Mon, Jun 24, 2013 at 11:50 PM, Jonas Sicking <> wrote:
>> All of this information can of course be duplicated in each HTML page  
>> that an application consists of. But that's a lot of information  
>> duplication. It would definitely put some hard requirements on that
>> generation of HTML pages is always done using code of some sort.

(It is in principle possible to copy by hand, although it is a pretty good  
way to make a powerful footgun…)

It also makes it very difficult for several applications to share a page  
as a component unless the design becomes crazy-complex. While such sharing  
may introduce security risks, it seems that simply prohibiting it outright  
for everything isn't the right place to impose the restrictions.

>> Either make files or server side scripts.
> I wonder if we should do something similar to <script>/<style>. That
> you can do either.

It is a minor increase in complication, but in principle I liked the  

> Requiring an external file seems kinda onerous too, though maybe it's
> not so bad.

In practice I think it is not at all bad. Even a manifest as simplistic as  
appcache seems to work ok in an external file, and as Jonas said, being  
able to have app metadata in an easily spidered format isn't a bad thing.

(Bad joke: You could always use a .mht archive to have everything in the  
same file...)

>> We could also enable pages to signal this information through an API to  
>> the UA. That way they author can put the information in a central
>> location himself.

And it doesn't seem like a particularly simple solution in practice

> But that also means that the metadata can't be found
>> through spidering.
> True, although it seems spiders are becoming ever closer to full-blown  
> browsers.

The great big ones, sure. But being friendly to people who have small  
custom spiders (e.g. that really only crawl for app manifests or whatever)  
seems important to me.

Allowing for open "App stores" seems like a use case for this - it should  
be possible to effectively make systems for curating a collection of apps  
semi-automatically, without requiring a full browser infrastructure under  
the hood.

(I realise this is as really a business philosophy point rather than a  
truly technical one, but it has technical implications)



Charles McCathie Nevile - Consultant (web standards) CTO Office, Yandex         Find more at

Received on Tuesday, 25 June 2013 13:48:05 UTC