Re: [apps-discuss] Concise Binary Object Representation (CBOR)

Paul Hoffman <> Wed, 22 May 2013 16:01 UTC

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Date: Wed, 22 May 2013 09:00:55 -0700
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Subject: Re: [apps-discuss] Concise Binary Object Representation (CBOR)
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On May 22, 2013, at 8:47 AM, James M Snell <> wrote:

> At first read it looks interesting, and can definitely see that a lot
> of thought was put into the design. There have, however, been a number
> of previous attempts at alternative compact binary representations (or
> at least discussions) that did not seem to really go anywhere.

We did ours differently than others: we started with an ordered set of design goals and stuck to them. That means that our early arguments about changes / bikeshedcolors had something we could compare against, and it make coming up with a solution much more tractable.

> What is
> the current implementation status of this? Are there implementations
> available or any existing plans to use this new format in a specific
> app or spec?

Both Carsten and I did versions (in Ruby and Python) to make sure the spec made sense and the examples worked. At least one other member of this list has apparently done a version in JavaScript. 

> I'm largely just curious about the context and motivation
> behind this...

There are many contexts. It might be useful in CORE and other constrained-environment work. It might be useful for the next protocols that need a compact binary representation and the WG doesn't want to fight over the specific features. If the design goals fit your needs (and we actually met them...), then it's useful to have it be widely available.

--Paul Hoffman