Use of ";" in relative URLs: procedural issue?

Larry Masinter (masinter@parc.xerox.com)
Mon, 3 Feb 1997 07:26:28 PST


To: uri@bunyip.com
Subject: Use of ";" in relative URLs: procedural issue?
From: Larry Masinter <masinter@parc.xerox.com>
Message-Id: <97Feb3.082628pdt."241"@palimpsest.parc.xerox.com>
Date: Mon, 3 Feb 1997 07:26:28 PST

There is a proposal to change the definition of relative URL
processing from that previously defined in RFC 1808 and
draft-fielding-url-syntax around processing of relative URLs that
start with semicolons:

> Semicolons were introduced to allow elements to be specified by name
> rather than position, for spaces which were best seen as matrices
> rather than trees.  In this case it is only sensible for relative
> URls which start with ";" to take a set of attribute values which
> are different.  This implies

>  1. attributes can only occur once (unless you have a syntax for
>     removing a particular occurrence) and
>  2. a missed value is equivalent to an unspecified value (so you can
>     remove an occurrence by setting its value to empty)
>  3. attributes are unordered

This is quite attractive, and is important for some schemes.  No one
seems to implement this currently, though, so introducing it at this
point seems like we would at least have to start over at "Proposed
Standard", and should only do so if the consensus of the community is
that this is the right thing to do.

So, do you think this is the right thing to do?

Larry