W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > uri@w3.org > January 2002

Re: tags

From: Tim Kindberg <timothy@hpl.hp.com>
Date: Wed, 23 Jan 2002 10:44:58 -0800
Message-Id: <>
To: dan@dantobias.com, Patrick Stickler <patrick.stickler@nokia.com>, URN <urn-ietf@lists.netsol.com>, URI <uri@w3.org>, Tim Kindberg <timothy@hpl.hp.com>
At 01:11 PM 1/23/2002 -0500, dan@dantobias.com wrote:
>On 23 Jan 2002 at 9:18, Tim Kindberg wrote:
> > >I don't follow. How do you retrieve a digital resource
> > >"from" a non-digital resource?
> >
> > You read the identifier with a sensor (e.g. a camera, barcode reader, ...)
> > and send the identifier to a resolver, which looks it up and returns the
> > URLs of one or more corresponding resources.
>In that case, the URI of the original offline resource is *not* being
>dereferenced to an online resource that is "at" that URI; the
>paradigm rather seems to be more that of hyperlinks, where various
>online resources, at different URIs, can be "linked from" or
>"associated with" the offline resource.

The paradigm is like hyperlinks; I call them 'physical hyperlinks': instead 
of associating text (in a Web page) with a URI, we associate a physical 
object with a URI. That physical association, like a textual association, 
is significant at a human level but it's irrelevant to what happens in the 
system when the underlying URI gets resolved. The rest of what you say 
isn't clear but doesn't seem to make any important distinctions for me. The 
URI is resolved to a resource in exactly the same ways that any URI is 
resolved to a resource.

>So, if I decide to assign URIs to each comic book in my collection, I
>know that I can't actually retrieve the comic book by typing that
>into a browser (or even scanning it from a bar code I've attached to
>the plastic bag I'm storing the comic in),

I think you're making an artificial distinction by setting up some type of 
Platonic resolution result and comparing it with other possible resolution 
results. It's not mathematically possible to 'know' anything a priori about 
the possible results of resolving an identifier except in some specified 
naming context. I can always construct a naming context that maps a given 
identifier to an (arbitrary) given result, and construct a 'browser' that 
acts as a client to that naming context. The fact that we use browsers of a 
certain type pointed to certain naming contexts is a convention driven by 
the application concerns of the times -- and they may change.



Tim Kindberg

mobile systems and services lab  hewlett-packard laboratories
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Received on Wednesday, 23 January 2002 13:45:16 UTC

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