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"information resource"

From: <Patrick.Stickler@nokia.com>
Date: Wed, 1 Sep 2004 14:53:10 +0300
Message-ID: <1E4A0AC134884349A21955574A90A7A50A1C84@trebe051.ntc.nokia.com>
To: <public-webarch-comments@w3.org>

Regarding the August 16 version of "Architecture of the World Wide Web"


In section 3.1 it states:

"The term Information Resource refers to resources that convey information.
 Any resource that has a representation is an information resource."

While I understand the desire to introduce a term which enables people
to speak directly about resources which are web-accessible, it seems to
me that this particular term will provide more confusion than utility.

Since *any* resource *can* (potentially) have a representation, the
membership of the class of "information resources" is a reflection of
the management, over time, of those resources, not any intrinsic 
characteristic of the resources themselves.

I may have a dog, which is denoted by a URI, and if I choose to publish
representations of that dog via that URI, that in no way changes the
nature of that dog. And I have a hard time thinking of that dog as
an "information resource", just because someone can dereference its
URI to get some representation of the dog.

Likewise, membership in this class of "information resources" will
be transient. At one time, there may be a URI denoted resource that
has no representation. Then it does, at which time it becomes an
"information resource". Later, the representations are no longer
accessible, at which time it ceases to be an "information resource";
insofar as the definition provided is concerned.

I expect that most folks will percieve membership in the class of
"information resources" to reflect an intrisic characteristic of
the resource itself, rather than simply a condition of its management
(or management of representations of that resource, depending on 
how you look at it).

Why not simply talk about the "web accessibility" of a given resource,
and clearly note the potentially transient and management-based
nature of that accessibility.

Positing a class of "information resources", as defined, is more
likely to cause confusion than clarity. This seems to be a case of
"less is more". Just leave the term out.




Patrick Stickler
Nokia, Finland
Received on Wednesday, 1 September 2004 11:53:33 UTC

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