WebDAV property registration

I've read the minutes and rough notes from the discussion at the IETF.
Apparently some people feel that properties will usually be meaningful only
in the context of a specific protocol, or in the context of a whole family
of other properties.  I don't agree with the conclusion.

One argument summarized by (but not necc. endorsed by) Jim  W is 

>2) There was also concern that DAV properties may not exist independently of
>other protocol elements, and hence registering just properties may not be
>enough.  For example, it is possible to define a long-time-duration RPC
>mechanism using properties. For example, client A stores a request in a
>property, then waits.  Next, client B retrieves the request from the
>property, executes the request, then stores the result back in the property.
>Later, client A goes back to retrieve the result.  In such a case,
>registering the property isn't sufficient, since what is really going on is
>a protocol.

This is, frankly, an abombination.  Has't Yaron lectured to us often and
forcefully about the evil of writing to properties for side-effect?  yes,
what's going on is a protocol, and yes, in such a case you could not
understand the property without the protocol.  but the fact that one can
misuse WebDAV in this way is no argument against a registry for the common
and reasonable case where one is not abusing it.

I see no reason not to have a registry of properties.  It can't hurt.  At
worst, it will be useless.  At best it will be very helpful.

I disagree that Dublin Core properties must be taken in an all or none
fashion to be of any use at all.  note that DAV already defines
dav:displayname, which is remarkable similar to the Dublin Core title

The property registry is a no lose situation.  In the worst possible case,
the information stored there is useless (Well I suppose in the truly worst
case, the information stored there is treacherously misleading, and
exploited by crackers or terrorists.)  In the best case, it gives us a
place to share useful common definitions.  

If there's no better forum for this registry, why not allow it to go forward?

sorry if Ive missed the point.


Received on Tuesday, 23 March 1999 02:13:19 UTC