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Content-type suggested BNF changes

1991-12-15 16:33:05
This is offered with the intent of a somewhat cleaner syntax for Content-type
and should not disrupt quad-x's progress.  To the extent that it causes
any heartburn, please assume that the suggestion will be removed.  The
existing quad-x syntax works.

But I try to avoid quotation marks and quad-x seems to force their occurrence
more than I think is necessary.  I've gotten particularly sensitive to
quotation marks, since they are not only ugly, but 822 parsers tend to
mis-handle them.  Sigh.

In any event, I note that a significant number of attribute/value
examples seem to have a value list, rather than a single value.  Further,
there are some special characters that are special in order to keep
the lexical analyzer context independent, rather than because the
specific field's syntax requires it.  (This is in keeping with the
design of 822 and 733, before it.)

I had originally not liked the use of ";" as the attribute/value
list separator, but it turns out to make the following possible.


parameter: := attribute "=" 1#value-phrase

value-phrase := *( "/" / "." / value)

where 'value' retains its current definition.

I am, however, not remembering why tspecials has "?" as a special.

So this change would allow parameters, such as:

Access-type: file=/a/b/c;,;...

without any bothersome quotation marks.



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