The following contains a fairly comprehensive approach:
---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: John Panzer <[hidden email]>
Date: Jan 30, 2006 9:57 PM
Subject: Re: Browser behaviour
Here's my 'best effort' suggestion that we're looking to implement at AOL:
(1) All links from within feeds go to a resource of type
(2) Header links (<link rel...>) in web pages to to a resource as in #1.
(3) Feed links displayed in web pages, which a user in a web browser
might click on, go to a resource of type "application/xml", which
contains exactly the same XML that would be contained in the Atom feed
resource of type "application/atom+xml", along with a style sheet that
causes said page to be rendered in a browser with subscribe links
(pointing to resource #1). The web UI tries to guide users to subscribe
buttons first, before showing them a raw feed URL.
In other words, the application/xml content is a fallback for when
users, despite our best efforts, end up looking at XML content inside a
web browser. I'd also be happy to make this behaviior browser-dependent
so that we serve application/atom+xml to browsers which will display it
inline with a style sheet, if there are any.
This means that users might possibly end up subscribing to something of
type application/xml if they copy and paste URL #3... but we could also
make this client dependent so that, for example, everything other than
known web browsers get application/atom+xml. Not sure about that as
it's changing the MIME type, but I think it's changing it for a good
reason (working around what I think is a browser problem).