mnot’s blog

Design depends largely on constraints.” — Charles Eames

Saturday, 8 September 2007

HTTP Standards Syndication Web Web Services


Feed Paging and Archiving (nee Feed History) has finally made it to a standards-track RFC.

For many non-traditional (read: non-blog) applications of Atom, I think archived feeds in particular are going to be vital. I’m already using it in some places which should be seeing the light of day before too long; e.g., sending events to HTTP caches — a problem space that people have been noodling on for a very long time indeed.

I’m also hoping that blog aggregators (especially my tool of choice, Vienna) will incorporate support for archived feeds, so that I don’t have to worry about missing entries if I go offline. There are a lot of interesting UI possibilities there.

That’s not to say that paging doesn’t have a place, but I must say that I’m a bit uncomfortable with how often people seem to prefer it. Yes, archiving does cost more, but it gives you better guarantees. Hopefully, this RFC will make people more aware of the trade-offs.

Many thanks to everyone who provided feedback and suggestions; it’s been a long road.


Andrew said:

The PURL link in that RFC,, redirects to on your site which is a 404.

Sunday, September 9 2007 at 11:32 AM

Che Dong said:

Hi Mark: I found your excellent article on web cache: it benefit for both of web developer and system administrators. I’ve translated your article into Chinese: still under draft. formatting.

It’s my honorer if my translation could be list in the other language version list.


Che Dong

Tuesday, September 11 2007 at 6:35 AM