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Subject: Second draft of simplified top-level ABNF

Joseph and I took advantage of another Sunday in Berkeley to get a working session in on the ABNF for XDI Core. See the newest entry (labelled Drummond Reed and Joseph Boyle 2014-10-26) on the XdiAbnf/Discussion page.

The basic action item was very simple: revise the previous simplified ABNF that we developed in August to reflect the decision about the removal of value nodes.

That didn't take very long. The rest of the work was on refactoring the ABNF to use rule names that are much more semantically precise, which is good not just for the ABNF but for the XDI Core spec and any other XDI spec that will need to reference these rule names. Specific examples:
  • Supergraph and subgraph were replaced by rooted-address and common-address.
  • We added a new rule for arc-address that includes all the atomic XDI arc types.
Joseph also continued work on the ABNF for the next layers down, i.e., the rules that will define the valid character sequences for the different arc-address types.

We also had a long discussion about cross-references, e.g., =(mailto:john@example.com). Joseph and I agreed they were still needed for URIs and for relative XDI names, but we were not sure we still needed them to encapsulate other XDI addresses. That's important because if we DON'T need to do that, we can avoid recursion in cross-references, which would be a big win.

Joseph is going to send a message exploring that question in more detail.


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