[Spec] <META> in the response header is too vague

Sean Conner sean at conman.org
Mon Feb 22 01:27:48 GMT 2021


It was thus said that the Great Solene Rapenne once stated:
> From the specification in "3.1 Response headers" it seems there are no
> current limitation to what could be used in META:
> 
> <STATUS><SPACE><META><CR><LF> 
> 
> > <META> is a UTF-8 encoded string of maximum length 1024 bytes,
> > whose meaning is <STATUS> dependent.
> 
> There is currently only the content type in it and possibiliy the lang
> metadata added for text/gemini types.
> 
> Maybe I missed something about it in the spec, but it's really vague,
> 
> - Is it ok to add many data in the response and up to the client to do
>   something with them?

  I'm not sure if "okay" is the right answer, but the MIME type (per the
spec) is defined in RFC-2045 (not RFC-2046 as stated---it's a typo) and
there, a consumer should be able to deal with parameters it doesn't
understand (read: ignore).

> - Should clients be strict and error in case of unknown fields?

  No.  Too hard to maintain strictness when new MIME types and parameters
are added.

> - What is planned for? It has 1024 bytes and doesn't use much, it seems to
>   be ready for something else "just in case".

  Nothing but parameters.  

  -spc


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