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Re: GET should be encouraged, not deprecated, in XForms [was: Issue request for the TAG: XForms]

From: Paul Prescod <paul@prescod.net>
Date: Wed, 23 Jan 2002 11:54:24 -0800
Message-ID: <3C4F14F0.651E2A5E@prescod.net>
To: "David E. Cleary" <davec@progress.com>
CC: Tim Bray <tbray@textuality.com>, www-forms@w3.org
Forms are a user interface mechanism. Submitting XML is an
implementation detail which is very useful and powerful in some
circumstances and not in others.

The requirements document says:

2.3 Migration from HTML 4

XForms should be designed in such a way as to encourage users to make
use of the new capabilities, rather than lingering on existing form
technologies. Likewise, the design should encourage implementors to
deploy user agents that implement XForms.

Some of the most important forms users in the world will not move to
XForms if they do not support GET. This includes Google, Yahoo, eBay
etc. They understand why GET is important and use it appropriately.

> Also, the semantics of GET as defined by HTTP do not fit in with a client
> submitting a form. While GET has certainly been overloaded to work as a form
> submission method in today's world, that seems like a mistake to me. POST
> has the correct semantics and specifically lists submitting forms in the
> specification.

The definition of GET also mentions forms.

"The HTTP protocol does not place any a priori limit on the length of
   a URI. Servers MUST be able to handle the URI of any resource they
   serve, and SHOULD be able to handle URIs of unbounded length if they
   provide GET-based forms that could generate such URIs."

"See section 15.1.3 for security considerations when using GET with

When the Web was invented they went out of their way to make it possible
to use GET with forms. Tim B-L, et. al. understood the system they were
trying to build and built it. People built wonderful applications around
it. Now you want to deprecate a key part of the design. Why?

 Paul Prescod
Received on Wednesday, 23 January 2002 14:56:00 UTC

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