RE: Valid representations, canonical representations, and what the SW needs from the Web...

> From: []On Behalf Of
> Sent: Sunday, February 02, 2003 1:44 PM
> To:;
> Cc:
> Subject: RE: Valid representations, canonical representations, and what
> the SW needs from the Web...
> ...
> Though it does raise the obvious question: since this standardized
> functionality exists, why do we need RDDL? Or rather, why does a
> RDDL instance need to be treated as a *representation* of an XML
> Namespace, rather than just a body of metadata describing various
> characteristics of the namespace resource and relations to other
> resources?

I'm still not sure that I follow you that a RDDL document can't be a
representation of a namespace. If a textual description of a namespace can't
be used as a representation, what else? Or are you saying that there
actually *isn't* a valid representation for a namespace?

> Why not just do a PROPFIND on the XML Namespace to get the same
> knowledge that would be defined in a RDDL instance, which would
> then not blurr and distort the conceptual relationship between
> resource and representation, since I'm presuming that whatever is
> returned by PROPFIND is not considered to (necessarily) be a
> representation of the resource.

It's definitively metadata about the resource. However, WebDAV currently is
weak in distinguishing between resource metadata and representation metadata
(a similar problem exists with HTTP headers, so this is by inheritance).

> Granted, typical browser users are not used to thinking about
> metadata, but that doesn't mean they would not understand and
> welcome a means to ask a server "Tell me about this thing"
> rather than "Show me this thing".

Well, they can do that right now.

What's not really possible right now is to have metadata for a resource
(PROPFIND succeeds) with no representation (GET/HEAD fail), because that's
not really compatible with the underlying model (PROPFIND for non-collection
resources basically being an extended HEAD method with XML marshalling).


<green/>bytes GmbH -- -- tel:+492512807760

Received on Sunday, 2 February 2003 08:17:44 UTC