Re: Registration of media type application/calendar+xml

Dave CROCKER <dhc@dcrocker.net> Fri, 10 September 2010 18:36 UTC

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Date: Fri, 10 Sep 2010 11:36:34 -0700
From: Dave CROCKER <dhc@dcrocker.net>
Organization: Brandenburg InternetWorking
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Subject: Re: Registration of media type application/calendar+xml
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Cc: ietf-types@iana.org, Steven Lees <Steven.Lees@microsoft.com>, Douglass Mike <douglm@rpi.edu>, IETF@IETF.ORG
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On 9/9/2010 8:38 PM, Ned Freed wrote:
>> This was a bad idea when it was first proposed (if I recall correctly) around
>> ten years ago, and it's still a bad idea.
>
> I strongly disagree.
>
>> Whenever you define an alternate representation of something, there will
>> inevitably be skew between the original representation and the alternate
>> representation.
>
> This is demonstrably false.


We need to distinguish between alternate syntactic forms, versus alternate 
semantic environments.  Translating between versions of the former do not need 
to lose information.  Translating between versions of the latter almost 
certainly do.  Losing information is about differences in semantics.

As I understand the calendar+xml, it is "merely" a syntactic alternative.  To 
the extent that it requires information loss when being re-encoded, yes that 
should be fixed.  But it's not likely to be difficult and the existence of two 
syntactic forms is not inherently problematic.  (We have lots of examples on the 
net of doing this quite nicely, at different layers of Internet architecture.)

As for the more abstract discussion about whether it's good or bad to have an 
xml version, I'll strongly suggest that it is best conducted in a real bar bof 
with real alcohol.  (I'll be supporting its existence, FWIW.)  The xml version 
is an important fact of life.  Let's not pretend otherwise.

It is not the job of the MIME registration process to make political statements 
that give preferential treatment to facts of life that some might like more than 
other facts of life...

Register the damn thing.  The registration form appears to satisfy registration 
requirements.

If there are specific problems with the associated spec, pursue them 
independently and concretely, please.

d/
-- 

   Dave Crocker
   Brandenburg InternetWorking
   bbiw.net