Re: field "METHOD" in "<FORM>"

Tony Sanders <>
Message-id: <9310251542.AA01090@austin.BSDI.COM>
Subject: Re: field "METHOD" in "<FORM>" 
In-Reply-To: ts's message of Mon, 25 Oct 93 06:56:08 BST.
Organization: Berkeley Software Design, Inc.
Date: Mon, 25 Oct 1993 10:42:20 -0500
From: Tony Sanders <>
>  I want to update a database, and to do it I need a new field "METHOD" in
> the tag "<FORM>". Example :
>   - <FORM METHOD="DELETE" ACTION="table name"> to delete a row
How about:
    <FORM ACTION="http://server/database">
    <SELECT NAME="action"><OPTION>update<OPTION>create<OPTION>delete</SELECT>
We should strive for a design where the method is implicit in the users
actions (e.g., when selecting a hypertext the GET method is implicit,
however shift-right_button might imply HEAD instead) and not hardcoded in
the link.

This (a database interface) does bring up another issue.  Let's say I have
a database where one of the elements is a large piece of text (e.g., a
bug report).  You cannot currently represent this with forms.  Why?
Because when you try and put the "VALUE" in <INPUT SIZE="64,30"
VALUE="...50K of text..."> I'll bet just about every parser we have is
going to break.  The "easy" way around this is to define a new input tag
that is a container
   <h2>Bug report contents</h2>
   <TXTIN SIZE="64,30">
   default text in container
I'll leave it to the SGML folks to solve this problem (which I believe
is important).  Attributes in SGML are next to useless.  Note that you
could it like this:
   <INPUT><VALUE>...</VALUE><LABEL>press here</LABEL></INPUT>
That way, browsers that don't understand INPUT would still show
the textual content and get an idea about what was going on.