RE: A More Aggressive Approach to Caching

From: James Gwertzman <>
Date: Tue, 17 Dec 1996 15:49:49 -0800

I can list the concerns of the high-end corporate sites to whom I've

Hits alone are not enough. They want to build relationships with individual
customers, tailoring their message to specific users based on user profile
data, demographics, etc. Building web sites is all about driving off-line
sales for most companies, and to justify their investment they want to have
as much control as possible over the marketing messages or campaigns that
they conduct. This means remembering what products you already own, and
showing you product updates, tips & tricks, announcements, errata, etc.
This also means providing different users with different marketing
material. Even the advertising-based sites are no longer interested in just
hits - some sites also want to know the types of users that are viewing
each ad or clicking through. Click-throughs are typically not a problem
with caching, however, since the "click-though" page is usually a script of
some sort and legitimately has expires=date. Sites like,
that are currently sending down expires=date on apparently static pages,
are most likely simply staging in their roll-out of more personalized
information. The first step is to get the site running from interpreted
scripts instead of static HTML (the .asp moniker at the end of the URL),
and then dynamic elements can be introduced over time. Most sites need to
first evaluate the performance hit of running from interpreted code before
they completely commit to running everything dynamic.

-----Original Message-----
From: Manar Hussain []
Sent: Tuesday, December 17, 1996 1:45 PM
Subject: Re: A More Aggressive Approach to Caching

>Last night I came up with another way of dealing with "cache unfriendly"
>The cache could keep track of what sort of hit rates it gets for each
>server hostname. In situations where bandwidth is scarce, the
>sites could be given lower priority or "quality of service."

I think this is a very valid tactic to have in hand - BUT I would be very
dissappointed if such actions were taken without significant attempts at
bringing "offenders" into the debate and taking on board their concerns. I
trust my faith that this would be so is well-placed.

Received on Tue Dec 17 1996 - 15:59:35 MST

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