W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > public-html@w3.org > September 2009

Re: ISSUE-81 (resource vs representation)

From: Roy T. Fielding <fielding@gbiv.com>
Date: Mon, 28 Sep 2009 10:32:45 -0700
Message-Id: <840BA47D-4E70-4ECB-B4D9-93926402A264@gbiv.com>
Cc: Ian Hickson <ian@hixie.ch>, "public-html@w3.org WG" <public-html@w3.org>
To: Tab Atkins Jr. <jackalmage@gmail.com>
On Sep 28, 2009, at 6:32 AM, Tab Atkins Jr. wrote:
> On Mon, Sep 28, 2009 at 1:56 AM, Roy T. Fielding  
> <fielding@gbiv.com> wrote:
>> The terminology used by the majority of
>> Web developers is that a URI is used to identify a resource for
>> the sake of manipulating its current state.
> I'm a web developer, I have web developer friends, and I've connected
> with lots of other web developers over technology issues.
> The terminology used by the majority of Web developers is that a UR*L*
> is used to identify a thing on the web that you can point a link at.

Yes, I still use URL as well, when not writing a message that is
referring to the identifier standard.  It makes no difference to people
who aren't worried about folks using the Locator terminology as an  
to invent yet another scheme that is supposedly location-independent.
URI is the term TimBL came up with before the IETF decided to rename
it to URL, and the only reason URL seems more familiar to you is
because the NCSA documentation (and all the book authors that only
knew about the Web via their experience using Mosaic and Netscape)
used the term URL because that is what the IETF called it at the time.
We are still referring the same thing, and it isn't "whatever can be
stuck between two quotes on an href attribute."

> The majority of web developers may have seen the term URI before, but
> correctly surmised that it's a synonym of URL in practice.

Yes. This of course has nothing to do with the issue being discussed.

> Any of the other possible terms for that same idea (IRI, HURL, LEIRI,
> etc.) are completely unknown by the majority of web developers, but if
> someone *did* stumble across one of those terms with adequate context
> to understand it, they'd again conclude that it's just a synonym for
> URL in practice.
> URL is the common term for that entire bag of concepts.  The
> distinctions are irrelevant in practice to web developers, though they
> may have some significance to people developing infrastructure.  You
> certainly don't need to be a browser developer to not care about the
> distinctions.

So?  I care about the distinctions because they are important
to server developers.  Either that matters to you or it doesn't.
If you logically combine the opinion of "doesn't matter" for
set X with "does matter" for set Y, then the result is "does matter"
for set X+Y.

Received on Monday, 28 September 2009 17:33:21 UTC

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