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Fall back strategy for manifest

From: Marcos Caceres <w3c@marcosc.com>
Date: Mon, 27 Jan 2014 19:33:27 +0000
To: www-tag@w3.org
Message-ID: <A098F3129DB145B4BDA2DB91BEC98027@marcosc.com>
Hi TAG, 
I'm currently working on standardizing this manifest thingy [1] that allows devs to define metadata for their Web apps using JSON. Example metadata includes the application's name and icons, plus the supported orientations and other little things for now. 

The problem I'm having is that HTML already provides this capability through <meta> and <link> elements. So, ignoring the fact that I'm (mostly unnecessarily) redefining stuff that is already in HTML, the question I have is: what would be a web friendly way to handle when both the manifest and the HTML define metadata about the web application? 

The options, I guess, are:

1. Manifest wins: if valid metadata is provided in the manifest, ignore what is in the HTML. Otherwise, fall back to the HTML.  
2. HTML wins: ignore anything in the manifest that is already in the HTML document. Use the manifest to fill the gaps.   
3. Manifest and HTML should be combined - take the union of both and, in case of conflict, use that with either the stuff in the manifest winning or the stuff in the HTML winning.
4. Don't redefine stuff that is in HTML. 
5. ??? 

I'm currently specifying 1. So, for example, if there are valid icons found in the manifest, then those are used and the ones in the HTML document are ignored. However, if the application's name is not in the manifest (or it was an invalid type), the user agent falls back to HTML.  

Any guidance would be appreciated. 
  
[1] http://manifest.sysapps.org/

-- 
Marcos Caceres
Received on Monday, 27 January 2014 19:33:28 UTC

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