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RE: URI: Name or Network Location?

From: Jon Hanna <jon@hackcraft.net>
Date: Fri, 23 Jan 2004 11:17:55 +0000
Message-ID: <1074856675.401102e36d29c@82.195.128.192>
To: "www-rdf-interest@w3.org" <www-rdf-interest@w3.org>

A URI is a location from the point of view of the system (considering the
browser, DNS, webserver etc. as a single system - lets all doodle nice clouds
and label them "Web" :) that returns me data - indeed more than a location it's
a series of directions (find IP, connect on given port, find
file/script/application/library call, process query, scroll to fragment, turn
left at the lights).

I don't do any of that (most of the time), I just type something in the address
bar or follow a link - what I am doing is much more comparable to giving any
identifier (username, Personal Public Service Number, ISBN, etc.) into some
system and getting something (dependant upon both the identifier and the
system) back, or possibly whatever that system's equivalent to a 404 is. So,
even when dereferencing, a URI seems more like a name than a location.

Indeed to a book shop's database an ISBN is a location; or at least a marker of
a location. So the difference between "name" and "location" quite often depends
on context even outside of the web. But unless you have to personally negotiate
from A to B you are using a name; only the retrieval system is using a
location.

-- 
Jon Hanna
<http://www.hackcraft.net/>
*Thought provoking quote goes here*
Received on Friday, 23 January 2004 06:17:57 GMT

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