Re: Format Negociation in Practice [Was: Versioning HTML at the server]

Earl Hood (
Wed, 19 Oct 1994 06:19:58 +0100

> :) 1. Marked Sections
> :) -------------------
> [.. desc deleted ..]

After further thought, marked section will not work. Basically,
what is need is an "if-else" construct, or conditional text.
Mark sections do not have the ability to say "if this condition
is meant, do this; else do this instead". All they do is include
or exclude data.

> :) 3. New HTML elements
> :) ---------------------
> [.. desc deleted ..]
> This is much closer to what I would like to see happen.
> But perhaps the *server* could negotiate and decide on some aspect of
> *what* to send before that, that would definitely speed things up.
> I would suggest some form of client-server negotiation prior to delivery
> so that the client and server are doing some of the job and allowing the
> best use of net and system.

I'm reluctant to on solutions that require extra work on the servers
part. Reason is that servers already have much work to do handle
multiple http connections at a given instance (plus handle CGI).
Adding more task for servers to do will just bog things down.

Also, servers provide other data than just HTML, why should servers
have to treat HTML special over other media types it might provide?
Media types should be self-sufficient and not require special server
processing. However, if HTML and HTTP are not meant to be mutual
exclusive ...

> :) 4. The CONCUR construct
> :) ------------------------
> [.. desc deleted ..]
> I'd say: Keep away from CONCUR. I got this advice from quite a few
> SGML experts (for real).

Thank God.