Re: content negotiation anti-principle

Gavin wrote off-list, and I'm replying (with his permission) on...

Also, apologies, but my mail client (Hotmail!) doesn't allow me to change 
the message ID I'm replying to, so this message is likely to start a new 
thread.  :(

>From: Gavin Thomas Nicol <>
>representation. That is actually the part that is really missing... being
>able to say that foo.jpg *MUST* be a JPEG image.
>There's two ways to look at a solution: remove negotiation, or fix the 
>where is causes pain. Despite appearances, I'm actually in the latter camp.
>One way to fix the problems would be to expose negotiation to the higher

  I replied previously [1] to a similar statement.  It's my feeling that 
bringing up negotiation into the markup would actually raise the cost to an 
author in the general case.

  While I am for client-side negotiation in UAs that support it (and getting 
them to support it is another issue!), I feel that putting too much 
infrastructural meaning in the markup layer to handle more specific server 
negotiation is a middle ground that may offer the worst of both worlds.

  That sounded stronger than I intended.  What I mean is, I think there is a 
chance for server-side negotiation to be cheaper (causing more usage of it), 
without significantly impacting the existing web.

  Changing the markup as a primary means of addressing the problems with 
server-side negotiation seems to be forcing the world to change its 
authoring habits, and still places the burden of decision on the server.   
That doesn't seem like a success, to me.

  Can you help me understand better?


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Received on Thursday, 9 January 2003 11:36:15 UTC