Announce: Future web infrastructure WS at WWW7

From: Jim Whitehead (
Date: Thu 19 Feb 1998 - 12:21:58 CST


One significant motivator for work on the Open Hypermedia Protocol has been the desire to develop a better hypermedia infrastructure than that provided by the current World Wide Web. As work on OHP has progressed, similar exploratory work on future infrastructure technology has taken place within the Web community. The WWW7 workshop on global hypermedia infrastructure provides a forum where researchers from both the Hypermedia and Web communities can gather and discuss differing approaches for evolving Web infrastructure.

I anticipate strong participation from the Web community (one workshop organizer is Henrik Nielsen, who was a key designer of HTTP, and is a leader of the W3C's next-generation HTTP project), and it is my hope that members of the OHP working group will be able to attend as well. I feel very strongly that interaction between these two groups will lead to a strengthening of both.

The call for participation can be found at:

It is also given below.

Please feel free to contact me, or any of the organizers, for more information on this workshop.

"Towards a New Generation of HTTP"
A workshop on global hypermedia infrastructure Held in Conjunction with the 7th Int'l WWW Conference April 14th, 1998 - Brisbane, Australia

ABSTRACT Current Web infrastructure, based on HTML, URIs, and HTTP has created a dynamic, vibrant global hypermedia information space. As groups rush to add diverse facilities such as document management and printing, both locally and globally the extensibility limitations of the current infrastructure are exposed. The inertia of the installed base makes the key technical question how to gracefully evolve the web to include these and other next-generation services. This workshop provides a timely opportunity to collect researchers and practitioners from the Web and Hypermedia communities to broadly consider the future infrastructure of the global hypermedia information space.

DESCRIPTION The Web community has a broad agenda for the future evolution of Web infrastructure. Today's infrastructure, based on the triad of HTML, URIs, and HTTP, has created the main platform for a large and diverse set of applications providing mission critical services for a dramatically growing Web community. But, the existing infrastructure is starting to show its limitations, a victim of its success. The growing complexity of often undefined or even unintended (or even conflicting) interactions between extensions has become a threat to the future evolution of the Web.

Over the next year or so there will be significant, concrete progress on assessing the limitations of HTTP/1.x and designing extensions to address them. Some of these areas include performance engineering, support for extensibility, distributed authoring and versioning, asynchronous notification, distributed object interfaces, tuning for embedded Web devices, and realtime multimedia support.

This workshop offers a timely opportunity to collect researchers and practitioners from the Web and Hypermedia communities to broadly consider the future infrastructure of the global hypermedia information space. With over 1.8 million web servers fielded on the Internet, there is tremendous inertia in the existing Web infrastructure. Adoption of new Web infrastructure will be slow, and its effects long-lasting. New infrastructure must be significantly better in all critical aspects, meeting the needs of a broad spectrum of users, while resolving existing problems of the current infrastructure and providing a solid, yet extensible foundation for future growth.

There are many visions for the future web infrastructure being developed today:

We believe the HTTP-NG development process is beginning to coalesce and the WWW7 conference in April 1998 is an ideal point to discuss technical and political influences on the future of HTTP. WWW7 offers a unique, neutral forum to discuss these issues within the Web community, a forum distinct from existing next generation development and standardization processes.

PARTICIPATING IN THE WORKSHOP This workshop solicits participation from individuals who wish to discuss the future infrastructure of the World Wide Web. Specifically, Web and Hypertext practitioners and researchers are invited to participate.

Participants must submit either a 2-4 page position paper or a full-length paper on an issue directly related to the next generation hypermedia infrastructure.

Topics of interest include, but are not restricted to:

Submission Deadline: March 26, 1998
Acceptance: Rolling acceptance, notification will be mailed within a week Final Submissions: April 8, 1998

Please submit your paper via email to the workshop organizers at <> in either HTML 3.2 or Adobe PDF format by March 26, 1998. Acceptance notification will be made on a rolling basis within a week of your submission.

RELATED PAPERS Workshop participants will find the following materials to be helpful background for the workshop.

W3C's HyperText Transfer Protocol Overview

W3C's HyperText Transfer Protocol - Next Generation Overview

W3C's Protocol Extension Protocol for HTTP Overview

IETF WebDAV Working Group

Open Hypermedia Protocol

W3C Note on Network Performance Effects of HTTP/1.1, CSS1, and PNG


Workshop Committee

WORKSHOP REGISTRATION Information on the WWW7 conference can be found at:

Information on this workshop can be found at:

Information on registering for the workshop once you have been accepted can be found at:

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