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Subject: Metadata Discovery Coordination Group, an Introduction

Discussions about URI metadata discovery have been going on in many places
for the past couple of years. This has been reaching its boiling point with
the recent discussions between the W3C TAG, XRI TC, POWDER WG, the OpenID /
Yadis, OAuth, Portable Contacts, XRDS-Simple, and OpenSocial communities,
and various IETF I-Ds published on related topics.

Web Discovery is likely to consist of two parts, the *retrieval* and
*format* of a metadata document linked to a resource identified by a URI.
There are multiple proposals for the metadata document format, with XRDS and
POWDER as two notable examples. Discussions regarding metadata format should
and will remain where they are currently being held.

However, there is great recognizable value in a single (simple) mechanism
for *retrieval* of metadata for resources identified with a URI. From the
most basic use case of identifying which API is supported by a given
endpoint, to a more complex trusted identity resolution, the requirements
seems to be significantly overlapping.

For many of these communities, time is running out and most are getting
ready to put the final touches and ship specifications that already have
running code. We have a rare (but narrow) opportunity to quickly go through
the current proposals and at least set the tone for current and future
discovery solutions.

I am not ignoring the political complications of trying to reach consensus
among so many entities and communities but I truly believe from the many
hours of conversations I had the past 2 months that we are mostly all on the
same page. All I think we now need is a room, and hence this new list:

This is not a working group, nor does this group have any deliverables or
will produce specifications. It is designed as a coordination venue for the
various efforts going on to discuss their proposals and progress. It is also
for soliciting feedback and confirming assumptions about discovery

Given the complexities behind IPR policies and the significant differences,
this list does not have an IPR policy. This means that discussions held here
are not covered, and if produce anything other than normative references to
existing standards (which is clearly the intention), will need to be
resolved if adopted elsewhere.

Web discovery has been my top priority for the past year and I am excited to
finally reach the point where a critical mass is formed to finally address
it. Please join the discussion at


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