Re: Remote UI BoF at IETF63
Since his name was taken in vain (vein?), Dave will proffer his own answer's
to Harald's questions. (OK, I'll admit it. I'd be offering this response
even if Harald hadn't referenced me.)
- What expertise do you see that the IETF has (and other groups do not
have) that makes it the right body to work on this set of issues?
This is an effort to specify an open, platform-independent method of
maintaining remote display objects, called widgets. The application-level
object-maintenance protocol that is described in
<http://www.ietf.org/internet-drafts/draft-stirbu-lrdp-00.txt> is very nicely
This means that the real work of pursuing such a service covers the
network-based mechanics of connectivity, reliability, security, and so on.
That's a set of activities about which the IETF has better experience than
- What importance to the Internet does this work have that makes it a
correct use of IETF resources?
(I'm still working on my understanding of where this work fits, among a range
of higher- and lower-level work, as well as work that might be called
"competing" work. Therefore my response here is quite tentative.)
Existing open and deployed work has a focus either on the micro-behaviors of
drawing graphics, or the macro-behavior of pure presentation.
The current work navigates space in between these two, creating and
maintaining remote, user-visible "objects". Hence it combines lessons learned
from html, xml and object-oriented programming, into a specification of an
object-oriented display and input environment, with presentation controlled by
Other comparable work is proprietary.
I must admit that I, like Dave, find the concept fascinating, and that
existing protocols like the X Windows protocol may not be the right fit
for your requirements, but the IETF is an organization that has
traditionally run very far and fast away from any mention of the words
"user interface", so it seems like a bit of a strange fit....
Although formally valid, use of the term "user interface" for this work is
entirely unnecessary. At the least it is too broad. In fact it has pretty
much nothing to do with human factors, cognitive science, or usability.
On looking at the proffered draft document, calling the proposal something
mundane like "remote widget exchange service" would be more precise and, I
suspect, far more helpful.
dcrocker a t ...
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