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Specification Update 20 Nov 2016

We’ve got a lot done recently! Let’s go through all of the latest changes.

First off, the message intents draft was replaced with message-tags[spec]. The new draft message-tags cap and semantics are more useful than intents, allowing features to be implemented by clients themselves (similar to CTCP) and also codifying some of the existing meta around clients/servers parsing all well-formed tags.

If you’ve missed it, the Strict Transport Security (STS) draft [link] is also on the site, and some testnets have support for it as draft/sts. The aim of STS is to allow clients to automatically upgrade their plaintext connections to TLS and to subsequently prevent downgrade attacks.

On a related note, the SNI draft [link] is also now on the site, and should help servers present the right certificate to connecting clients.

It was clarified that all message tag / capability / batch names must be handled as opaque identifiers [pr]. This was already assumed by most, but is a useful clarification to make for implementors.

Draft capability names now use the draft/ prefix to denote their status, and to improve transition if specs change before being merged in proper [pr].

IRCv3.2 Metadata has been deprecated [pr]. The new version of Metadata will extend the rate-limiting and notification capabilities of this spec, letting it be implemented in a much more efficient way by the larger IRC servers.

And for proposals, an rfc7700 casemapping PR has been submitted, which would allow nicknames and channel names to contain Unicode characters. As well, an extended message length PR has been submitted, which would allow servers to accept and send larger IRC messages.