Re: Content negotiation

Eric W. Sink (
Tue, 7 Nov 1995 11:17:54 -6

> We have dozens of browsers in our "browser-negotiation" database.


> Including items listing the features that we believe Microsoft's browser
> supports. However until someone proposes a way to tell me via the headers
> that this browser supports '<p align=center>' and that this browser
> supports tables but not percentage widths, and this one supports tables
> within tables but not with forms in them; I'm going to have to keep doing
> browser-based presentation.

Why? Most content providers seem to live in one of a couple of
worlds. Either they want their info to be viewable by a wide variety
of people, or they want their info to be as cool as possible under
one browser. What is it about your world that makes it a hybrid of
the two?

> What really gets me
> though is trying to figure out whether I need to send a RealAudio file, a
> WAV file, an AU file or an AIFF file. Why the !@#$% aren't the major
> browser manufacturors sending that helper-application information?

Because no one wants to send 1K of Accept headers on every request.
I'm not trying to defend the choice, but I think that's the !@#$%
reason. Why not just send an AU file every time?

Content negotiation via the User-Agent field is irresponsible.

Eric W. Sink