Features outside of the Kolab format

Bernhard Reiter bernhard at intevation.de
Mon Nov 5 18:22:21 CET 2007

On Thursday 01 November 2007 08:45, Gunnar Wrobel wrote:
> The downside:
>  The Kolab format is limited.

This can also be considered a strength.
To my eyes iCalendar has too many variants, 
keeping something simple and straight raises the chances 
to get it implemented in a good way.

> Many clients by now offer features beyond what is specified within the
> Kolab format.

As the clients are different, they will always have some features that do not 
fully match. Kolab tries to find one (out of several possible) common 

> What do developers do in case a Kolab client offers additional
> features that are not being described within the Kolab format?
>  They implement it.
> This leads to the interesting situation that all the Outlook
> connectors implement any groupware object attributes that lie outside
> of the format specs in their own special way and are incapable of
> understanding each other concerning those attributes. 

As far as I have understood there is the technical difficulty, 
that any Outlook plugin can add attributes to the internal Outlook message 
object. So the full set of possible attributes is not known.
For many users those plugins need to work, so one easy way is to save the 
message object somehow in a windows specific way.

> I think it would be good if the Kolab format development process would
> better accommodate for the fact that clients progress and offer
> features beyond the boundaries of the format specifications.

I agree, but I could also say: It already does. 
The main problem with format changes is client 
and server implementation support and most current clients 
seem to be conservative. 

The process is to convince a significant number of people with a proposal
to change the format over this list. 


Managing Director - Owner: www.intevation.net       (Free Software Company)
Germany Coordinator: fsfeurope.org. Coordinator: www.Kolab-Konsortium.com.
Intevation GmbH, Osnabrück, DE; Amtsgericht Osnabrück, HRB 18998
Geschäftsführer Frank Koormann, Bernhard Reiter, Dr. Jan-Oliver Wagner
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