[OSGeo-Standards] Was: "file" formats. Is: GeoWeb

Rushforth, Peter Peter.Rushforth at NRCan-RNCan.gc.ca
Fri Jul 12 11:20:32 PDT 2013


> Interesting comment "WMTS is not RESTful yet because of other 
> reasons". 
> There is a presentation on the OGC website that documents Why 
> WMTS is RESTful. This presentation was provided as part of 
> the approval process for WMTS.

Not to be lazy, but could you provide a link, please?  

In reviewing the WMTS spec just now, in section 10 "WMTS using RESTful",
there is a discussion of REST, although it is not clear to me that
hypertext has had (enough) influence.  The spec seems to be driving the URL
structure.  To that extent it misinforms the reader about what
constitutes REST.  So there is a chicken and egg problem here,
we write specs which describe REST in incomplete / inaccurate terms, and these
specs come to define REST.

> This inability to agree on what a RESTful service is (or the 
> interface) has plagued REST work in the OGC for years. 

See above comment.

Also, agreement is not really necessary, as the origin of the term 
comes from a definitive doctoral dissertation.  I'm no scholar
but I believe academics who have Ph.D.s take these things pretty
seriously.  Anyway, the definition from that work is available 
for all to read on the web.

Language is elastic, yes.  However, what needs to be considered
is more important than definition of terms.

The more important fact is that the architecture described by
the term is by-passed by OGC specifications, despite (mis-) use of the term. 

> This 
> is why the OGC Architecture Board suggests a pragmatic 
> approach - implement REST interfaces for several existing OGC 
> standards (WFS, WPS, WCS etc) and find out what in practice 
> (not in the abstract) a RESTful OGC web service is and then 
> document the best practice and guidance for future work.

Perhaps just avoiding the term REST altogether would be pragmatic. 
Focus on architecture, and accept that alternative architectures,
informed by the actual operating Web, could be useful, not to say
a dramatic departure from existing practice.

> Also, GeoPackage defines rules for a container of geo-content 
> (binary).  
> These rules (requirements) define the internal format for 
> storage on a device. The geometry elements are in line with 
> OGC/ISO Simple Features and ISO 19107.

These are important functions for OGC.  Don't stop!  But also
consider the bigger picture.


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