[whatwg] Proposal for local-storage file management

Ian Fette (イアンフェッティ) ifette at google.com
Thu Aug 27 17:10:01 PDT 2009

Things missing from Arun's File proposal as is, off the top of my head:
a) a directory structure (someone would have to build one on top of it...
not critical, but not ideal)
b) Ability to store it not in localStorage in some hidden directory, but on
the part of the filesystem the user is familiar with (e.g. if I edit a
picture, I don't want to store it in localStorage tucked away under "local
settings\user data\...", I want to save it in /home/ifette/photos/blah.jpg).
Don't make the browser a silo.
c) ability to map in a directory and make sense of that. I want Picasa /
Flickr / Facebook to be able to see "oh look, there's a new file in
/home/ifette/photos/ - let's act on that.")
d) Ability to read/update parts of the file. Could be used similar to blob
builder for building up a form post that I then send off. Or could be used
to manage an offline mail database, assuming I don't want to shove my mail
into a sqlite database. For this it's desirable that I be able to
efficiently fseek(), fread(), and fwrite() segments of the file.

2009/8/27 Jonas Sicking <jonas at sicking.cc>

> 2009/8/27 Ian Fette (イアンフェッティ) <ifette at google.com>:
> > I would much rather have a well thought-out local filesystem proposal,
> than
> > continued creep of the existing File and Local Storage proposal. These
> > proposals are both designed from the perspective of "I want to take some
> > existing data and either put it into the cloud or make it available
> > offline". They don't really handle the use case of "I want to create new
> > data and save it to the local filesystem", or "I want to modify existing
> > data on the filesystem", or "I want to maintain a virtual filesystem for
> my
> > application, and potentially map in the existing filesystem" (e.g. if I'm
> > flickr and I want to be able to read the user's "My Photos" folder, send
> > those up, but also make thumbnails that I want to save locally and don't
> > care if they get uploaded, maintain an index file with image metadata /
> > thumbnails / ... locally, save off some intermediate files, ...
> > For this, I would really like to see us take another look
> > at http://dev.w3.org/2006/webapi/fileio/fileIO.htm (I don't think this
> spec
> > is exactly what we need, but I like the general approach of "origins get
> a
> > virtual filesystem tucked away that they can use, they can
> > fread/fwrite/fseek, and optionally if they want to interact with the host
> FS
> > they can request that and then get some sub-set of that (e.g. "my
> documents"
> > or "my photos") mapped in.
> > -Ian
> If we added the ability to create File objects, which could then be
> stored in localStorage (and WebSQL or whatever will replace it), then
> wouldn't we basically have the functionality you seek?
> What's the difference between sticking a File in the "foo/bar/bin"
> property on the localStorage object, vs. sicking a File object in the
> "foo/bar/bin" directory in some FileSystem object?
> Note that the latest HTML5 drafts allow for storing File objects in
> localStorage.
> / Jonas
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