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Re: The OpenURL - A Distinguished URI?

From: Tim Bray <tbray@textuality.com>
Date: Thu, 04 Sep 2003 11:16:22 -0700
Message-ID: <3F578176.3060306@textuality.com>
To: Eamonn Neylon <eneylon@manifestsolutions.com>
Cc: "Williams, Stuart" <skw@hp.com>, "'Hammond, Tony (ELSLON)'" <T.Hammond@elsevier.com>, www-tag@w3.org, uri@w3.org

Eamonn Neylon wrote:

>  If a querystring is recognised as claiming
> that it is OpenURL Framework compliant (by virtue of its self-identifying
> nature) then it may be processed to retrieve (ContextObject) metadata
> components either in by-value or by-reference form.

I'd be real nervous about automatically concluding that a querystring is 
OopenURL compliant based on syntax in the querystring.  Sorry, I haven't 
read this stuff in a while so if there is a 100%-unambiguous way of 
ascertaining whether a URI's syntax is intended to be OpenURL-governed, 
that would be a really good thing.

> There are then two uses of URIs possible within the OpenURL Framework:

I thought one of the nice things about this kind of general framework is 
precisely that it doesn't inherently constrain the kinds of things you 
can use it for.

>  The identifier application is
> causing lots of headaches as many resources that the existing users of
> OpenURL want to talk about are not available on the web (i.e. do not have
> URI representations).

Heh, you're not the only group wrestling with that one.  It's generally 
the case that with URIs the only way to find out if there's a 
representation is to ask for one.  And just because there isn't one 
there today doesn't mean there won't be one available tomorrow.

> The only thing that might be perceived as threatening about the OpenURL
> (Framework) is its legacy name - but we couldn't come up with anything
> better!

I would have been happier with a name that reflected the reality that 
this is mostly aimed at standardizing syntax & semantics in the query 
string, but whatever.

Cheers, Tim Bray
         (ongoing fragmented essay: http://www.tbray.org/ongoing/)
Received on Thursday, 4 September 2003 14:16:23 UTC

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