[web-devel] On the state of Haskell web frameworks

Gregory Collins greg at gregorycollins.net
Tue Mar 16 02:59:01 EDT 2010

Curt Sampson <cjs at starling-software.com> writes:

> Let's say on my server I store a lot of static content in gzip'd form.
> In this case, I certainly want to be handling the transfer-encoding
> myself, because I don't want to uncompress my compressed copy to send
> it to the server, only so that the server can compress it again as it
> sends it.

I think you're confusing content-encoding and transfer-encoding
here. Servers shouldn't be arbitrarily mucking around with your

>> Another example: we treat responses differently based on whether you
>> explicitly set a content length or not. If the connection is HTTP/1.0,
>> and you don't set a content length, we have to set "Connection: close"
>> in the response headers and close the socket when we're finished
>> sending the response....
> Another approach would be to have interface library buffer the response
> as it's being generated and, when it's complete, calculate the content
> length and pass it on to the web server. In the case of a web server
> doing a lot of relatively small requests, this would probably be
> considerably more efficient. But of course you still need to the ability
> to send out the response as it's being generated for large responses
> that quickly produce some data, but take a relatively long time to
> produce all of the data.

This breaks "being able to stream in O(1) space", so it's out. Concrete
examples: comet, internet radio, etc.

>> How much of that sort of logic goes into the interface layer?
> I'm not sure what you mean by "interface layer," but I feel that, as
> much as possible, that sort of logic should be in standalone libraries
> that go between the "standard" web server interface and the user
> application.

By "interface layer" for the purposes of this conversation I mean
roughly the level of abstraction that Hack/WAI/WSGI/Rack/Java Servlets
are inhabiting.

Gregory Collins <greg at gregorycollins.net>

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