[standards-jig] Avatars

David 'TheRaven' Chisnall theraven at sucs.org
Tue May 6 17:08:48 UTC 2003

I'm not sure I like the idea of using a client-specific namespace for 
experimental JEPs, since it would destroy the interoperability between 
clients (for example if I set an avatar in gabber:x:avatar, and then 
someone else requests it in jajc:x:avatar, this is no good).  
The idea of having an experimental namespace 
jabber:experimental:x:avatar, for example seems better, since it would 
allow all client developers to implement compatible experimental 
features, but with a clear indication that they are experimental.  

It would probably be a good idea to have a standard deprecation 
procedure as well, for example a feature remains deprecated for 6 months 
after being superceded after which use should be treated as a bug.

Thomas Muldowney wrote:

>I can appreciate that client authors want to do things for there users,
>but I think we need to spell out the "correct" process by which you can
>use an experimental JEP.  What it will probably boil down to is, using a
>namespace significant to your client like:  gabber:x:avatar or
>http://gabber.jabberstudio.org/protocol/avatar, and a willingness to
>move to the standardized versions when they appear.
>As to why the JEP was published, that's the correct process for a JEP. 
>You publish a version you want discussed, it is labelled appropiately
>(experimental), and discussion begins.  At a certain point it is final
>called, and sent to the council.  Then it moves on from there.  I don't
>see anything wrong with how the JEP was treated.  Heck, back then it was
>even faster to get voted on, and I'm pretty sure the JEP was voted away
>rather quickly after introduction.  So, it probably boils down to a
>labelling issue, and the helpful hints I mentioned above for
>About creating a new JEP for the "new" avatar work, I still don't see
>why that's necessary.  Most of the information is still valid or needs
>minor touch ups.  Then we add in the pubsub explanations.  Plus, the old
>revisions are all maintained by the CVS.  We aren't losing it, we are
>making a new revision of the exact JEP.
>More thoughts?
>On Tue, 2003-05-06 at 11:24, Rachel Blackman wrote:
>>> I see the 'but I have implemented it already' argument frequently. On
>>>the one hand we have people who say: "if it's experimental and you
>>>implement: sorry for you". On the other hand we have client developers
>>>who feel ignored because their implementation doesn't count. There are
>>>also some political issues which I don't want to get into.
>>> If the client developers wouldn't have used the jabber:x:avatar
>>>namespace in their implementations, it would be no problem to totally
>>>rewrite this JEP. They could have used 'myclientname:x:avatar' for as
>>>long as the JEP was not 'draft'. If the JEP would then be totally
>>>rewritten, at least their implementation doesn't break down.
>>To play devil's advocate for a moment here, look at it from the other side.
>>You have client authors who, in many cases, are dealing with people coming
>>from the AIM, Yahoo, etc. world.  While programs like Exodus are quite
>>technically sound, if I tried to get my MSN-using parents onto Jabber
>>they'd not be able to wrap their heads around it.  They want something that
>>looks like MSN or AIM.  They'd do much better with, say, Rival Messenger.
>>And avatars are a big feature users always ask for; as soon as one client
>>implements them, users hear about it and begin asking for it.  I know my
>>choice not to support sending avatars using JEP-0008 in Trillian is not
>>going to be a popular one; I'm already expecting lots of unhappy 'but
>>JAJC/Rival/GAIM/whatever does avatars!' comments, and I don't honestly
>>think 'it's a deferred and deprecated experimental standard, there'll be a
>>new avatar system coming soon' is going to entirely cut it with the users.
>>I'll cope, but... :)
>>The avatar JEP has been available for close to two years, having been
>>initially put up September 14, 2001.  That is two years in which time
>>client authors looking to get people from the legacy IM networks onto
>>Jabber have been trying to implement features; avatars, formatted text and
>>file transfer are the three big ones AIM sorts will be asking for.
>>To finish the devil's advocate soapbox... if the avatar JEP was never
>>intended to last or be implemented in that form, and if it's considered
>>'bad' to implement the experimental protocol extensions... then why was the
>>avatar JEP published and left out there for two years in the first place? :)
>>Experimental JEPs are useful because they provide discussion on
>>implementation.  However, leaving a JEP for a widely-desirable feature in
>>'experimental' for two years and then yanking it and saying 'well, they
>>should have known better than to implement it'... it's not going to be a
>>popular move to begin with.
>>Just my $0.02. :)
>>>Somehow, we need to make it even more clear to developers to not put code
>>>based on experimental JEPs in software meant for widespread use. I can
>>>imagine a big red warning at the top of JEPs. Maybe it is a good idea to
>>>have early implementers use a different namespace as long as the JEP is
>>>not in, say, Call for Experience phase, or even draft.
>>The differing namespace almost makes sense.  Call it 'jabber:jep:<jep>'
>>while it's experimental; when the protocol is finalized, they move it to
>>the normal namespace. :)
>Standards-JIG mailing list
>Standards-JIG at jabber.org

More information about the Standards mailing list