Forums bandwidth issues

Phillip Susi psusi at
Fri Mar 10 15:56:29 GMT 2006

Based on the new message on the forums, it seems there are some 
bandwidth issues with it.  I just thought I'd point out that it looks 
like every page contains embedded CSS rather than linking to an external 
style sheet.  If this one change were made it would lower the bandwidth 
usage by ~15% ( the style sheet makes up ~15,000 bytes of every page ).  
It also looks like there is quite a bit of space used for common things 
that appear on every page, which could be moved to a shared external 
linked document.  These two changes are not very hard to make and could 
cut bandwidth usage by as much as 25%. 

A more difficult change would be to change the pages to be generated in 
XML with a linked XSL style sheet.  The client only needs to download 
the style sheet once, then each page they visit is very small chunk of 
XML data that is transformed to html on the client side.  The server can 
be configured to detect clients that don't understand XSL and perform 
the translation for them, and cache the results.  I think that at this 
point though, most modern web browsers support this.  This could 
potentially cut bandwidth usage by as much as 80%. 

Not only would these things help keep the costs of running the servers 
down, but it makes browsing the forums faster for the users. 

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