Re: [URN] Re: URI documents

Roy T. Fielding (
Wed, 07 Jan 1998 08:57:23 -0800

To: Larry Masinter <>
Subject: Re: [URN] Re: URI documents 
In-reply-to: Your message of "Wed, 07 Jan 1998 00:03:46 PST."
Date: Wed, 07 Jan 1998 08:57:23 -0800
From: "Roy T. Fielding" <>
Message-ID:  <>

>If we attempted to remove any indication that the URI document did
>anything more than specify the syntax of URIs and how that syntax
>should be processed by URI-processing software, with any semantic
>interpretation of the *meaning*, do you think we could get beyond
>the current impasse?

It depends on what would be removed.  I don't want to remove any
information which has been proven necessary for people implementing
parsers in URI-enabled applications.  That covers just about everything
in the current document, since we already went through 12 iterations
of removing things that were not needed and adding those that people
have requested.

If the URN group does not want fragments to be in the syntax, then
a URN is not a URI.  I don't think there is even a tiny bit of logic
to support the conclusion that a URN would not use fragments, but I
can't stop people from shooting themselves in the foot.

Stripping the URL specification such that it is as meaningless as the
URN specification is not an option --- we know what is and is not
generic syntax and semantics simply by looking at the parsers which
implement these things in current practice.  If a URN is not a URI,
then we should define the URL specification to represent the complete
scope of locators, and simply ignore URN.