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RE: Resources and URIs

From: <Patrick.Stickler@nokia.com>
Date: Tue, 29 Apr 2003 14:12:42 +0300
Message-ID: <A03E60B17132A84F9B4BB5EEDE57957B5FBBA9@trebe006.europe.nokia.com>
To: <cowan@mercury.ccil.org>
Cc: <phayes@ai.uwf.edu>, <gk@ninebynine.org>, <uri@w3.org>

> -----Original Message-----
> From: ext John Cowan [mailto:cowan@mercury.ccil.org]
> Sent: 29 April, 2003 14:02
> To: Stickler Patrick (NMP/Tampere)
> Cc: phayes@ai.uwf.edu; gk@ninebynine.org; uri@w3.org
> Subject: Re: Resources and URIs
> Patrick.Stickler@nokia.com scripsit:
> > And how, pray tell, do you deal with multiple representations?
> A fair criticism, and on reflection I see that the TM 
> distinction doesn't
> really address thing vs. representation at all.
> Instead, it distinguishes "electronic thing" from 
> "non-electronic thing",
> which is also an important distinction.  I got into this on xml-dev,
> enquiring "What is the URI for the W3C?  If the W3C doesn't know that,
> it doesn't know much.  :-)"
> Someone said that TBL's answer to this was 
> "http://www.w3.org/Consortium/",
> In that case, said I, what is the URI of the document titled "About
> the W3C"?  No answer.  

Not in the least presuming that I am even worthy of untying Tim's
sandals, I can try to offer one ;-)

If Tim says that http://www.w3.org/Consortium/ denotes the W3C,
then that's (probably) what it denotes.

If you do an HTTP GET on that URI, and you get a document titled
"About the W3C" then that is a "representation" of the W3C and
is some other, distinct resource. Ideally, the HTTP server should 
tell you the URI of that other resource in its response header,
but not all servers are so well behaved.

It may be that you are not told what URI denotes what you have
gotten from the HTTP server, but that doesn't mean that either
(a) it has no known URI to denote it, or (b) that the URI given
to the server is overloaded to denote both the W3C and the document
(which would be very bad indeed).

Ultimately, if you want to talk about both the W3C and the
document titled "About the W3C", you will need a distinct
URI for each (at least insofar as RDF is concerned ;-)

> I began to feel like the village atheist saying
> "And who created God?"


> TM does at least deal with *this* problem.
> > (and BTW, I started with ISO TMs and XTM long before I got into RDF,
> > and was wooed by RDF precisely because of issues such as this, so
> > I'm not a "blind RDF fart who just won't take the time to consider
> > TMs seriously" ;-)
> Okay, okay.  One never knows how much knowledge to presume when
> jumping headlong into a discussion with both feet first.

Quite so. Though I do it all the time myself regardless ;-)


Received on Tuesday, 29 April 2003 07:12:50 UTC

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