Re: [W3C Web Crypto WG] about extensions to Web Crypto specification

On Wed, Aug 6, 2014 at 3:18 AM, GALINDO Virginie <> wrote:

> Dear all,
> We have to find a mechanism for extending our Web Crypto API
> specification, in order to integrate in the future some new algorithms, or
> algorithm flavors. This corresponds to the bug 25618
> .
> Here are ideas and requirements that were mentioned during the conference
> calls and the bugzilla discussions. Those statements are high level, and
> are here to try to identify requirements and principles on this extension
> mechanism. Note that this discussion is not only about adding new curves,
> but should also be applicable to next generation of algorithm. So lets try
> to be generic, in a first step.
> 1 Extension can be used to add new algorithm (or new flavor of algorithm)
> to the Web Crypto API

Not sure what you mean by "new flavor". Perhaps you can elaborate.

> 2 Extension is a separate document from the main specification, which must
> contain complete description of the new (flavor of) algorithm (reference,
> registration, dictionary, operations, and if is it part of 'recommended
> algorithms' or not)

With the exception of "recommended algorithms", agreed. "recommend
algorithms" is not something I see being something that makes it to/through
CR/CFI. It's merely a 'footnote' in the absence of profiles, meant to
guide/prioritize implementation.

Put differently, if every algorithm (in today's spec) was a separate spec -
as it should have been from the start - we wouldn't be discussing
recommended algorithms, I don't think.

> 3 Extension existence requires to have hook in the main Web Crypto API
> spec to declare new key format (please add any other impact)

Hasn't been an identified use case, but presumably, yes. Although I think
any algorithms that required specific formats seems sketchy :)

> 4 Extension can be in a form of a wiki, or a Note or a Recommendation
> (please state your preferred scenario)

Extensions change the API. They MUST be formal documents entered into the
W3C process, same as every other platform API is presumed to go.

> 5 The integration of new (flavor of) algorithm requires to go though W3C
> IP call for exclusion or not (in that case only the Recommendation scenario
> would work)


> 6 The new (flavor of) algorithm will requires identifier and short name
> that need to be registered (in IETF or W3C)

No. A spec is sufficient, much in the same way a spec is sufficient to
declare that window.performance implements the PerformanceTiming interface.

> This is a strawman proposal expecting your challenge, criticism and
> alternatives...
> Go !
> Regards,
> Virginie
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Received on Wednesday, 6 August 2014 21:22:58 UTC