Re: Submitting input-form data to server

Tim Berners-Lee (
Mon, 6 Sep 93 11:00:25 +0200

Various comments on selected excerpts:

> > mailto:<e-mail address> Form sent as e-mail to
> > specified recipient
> > http:<address> Indicates to return form data as
> > a query string
> > submitform:<address> Indicates to submit the
> > form using the SUBMITFORM
> > method.

> Why not just use POST?

Cool, ie the ACTION url is the url of an object to which
completed form should be POSTEDed. This would allow
the posting to newsgroups too as well as mailing lists
so long as we have an internally consistent semantics for POST

of a notional list to which the form should be added.
This in fact would allow LINK to be used instead of POST
in principle ... nothing breaks if you wnat to store your
form yourself.

> Date: Sun, 5 Sep 93 19:07:58 EDT
> From: (Henning G. Schulzrinne)
> (Clearly, this is marching in the direction of EDI, but that's a
> different topic.)

A different topic? Confucious he say wise man look
far in direction he march. It wise to learn from EDI.

> It would be extremely nice if a set of predefined common attributes
> could be defined so that you don't have to fill in your name, email
> address, phone etc. by hand in every single form that comes along.
> The client would recognize the attributes and supply default values
> from some local configuration file.

==> How about a general solution of defining in HTML+ some
standard entities like &name; and &organisation. which
would in ANY case be expanded in line? A particular
use would be in the default sttings of text fields,
but they could be used anywhere in the document.

Dear &name;,<p>You probably haven't thought about
life insurance since I last wrote to you at &organization;.

This is neat because it is an orthogonal feature to the

As for the actual names for the variables, the usual
unix environment variable are not only
a good clue they may exist. The entity need not have the same
name as the environment variable, and an automatic
mapping might be a security leak.
(Perhaps we should add &ccno; and &ccexpires; or then
again maybe not :-)


PS: By the way I suggest a SUBMIT button have a special rendering to
keep the security people happy: following links can change your
life; submitting forms could end it...