W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > uri@w3.org > April 2003

Re: Resources and URIs

From: Dan Brickley <danbri@w3.org>
Date: Wed, 23 Apr 2003 05:19:05 -0400
To: "Roy T. Fielding" <fielding@apache.org>
Cc: Tim Bray <tbray@textuality.com>, uri@w3c.org
Message-ID: <20030423091905.GU9281@tux.w3.org>

* Roy T. Fielding <fielding@apache.org> [2003-04-22 16:01-0700]
> >I have a suggested wording change, because while I have been largely 
> >unimpressed by the philosophical jargon being thrown around here 
> >recently, I do agree that the current definition "A resource can be 
> >anything that has identity" offers significant room for improvement; 
> >among other things it deserves to be called out and not sequestered in 
> >a <dd>.
> Huh?  <dl> is a definition list in HTML.  All I want is a definition of
> the "R" in URI, and the existing one is sufficient without excluding
> anything that might be in the class of resources identified by URI.
> >Here you go:
> Thank you for proposing some real text!  However, please note that the
> definition of resource in 2396 extends beyond the scope of the Web and
> into all of the possible things that Internet protocols might identify.
> I cannot use a subset of examples to define the concept because then
> people use the examples to declare those outside the set to not be
> resources.

"all of the possible things that Internet protocols might identify"
again leaves open the teaser/hint that there might somewhere be something
(some thing) that is out of scope for 2396's notion of "resource". Why 
not save everyone the trouble of wondering what kinds of things might fall
beyond even this broad scope, and say once and for all up front and in 
capital letters that 2396's "resource" encompasses "all things". Full stop. No 
confusing qualifiers like "possible", or complicating riders like "that can 
be identified", "that can be imagined", "that Internet protocols 
might identify". Such qualifiers, even if meant as additional explanation, 
are too easily read as specifying a restriction on the class of 2396-happy
things which might "count" as resources. 

Are there any things that are not 2396 resources? It seems not. Does a
thing only become a 2396 resource when used/named as such? Not on my 
reading of the spec and these threads. Couldn't we just say something 
like "For the purposes of this specification, the term 'resource' can 
be understood as synonymous with 'thing' or 'entity'. There are no 
things that aren't 'resources' in this sense"...

Received on Wednesday, 23 April 2003 05:19:12 UTC

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