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RE: Opacity and mailto: in conflict

From: Massimo Marchiori <massimo@w3.org>
Date: Mon, 22 Sep 2003 19:43:42 +0200
To: "Norman Walsh" <Norman.Walsh@Sun.COM>, "Tim Bray" <tbray@textuality.com>
Cc: <www-tag@w3.org>

> | Not in the slightest.  It is perfectly OK for software to look at the
> | URI scheme and act on that basis, the semantics of URI schemes are
> | well-documented.  The problem is looking into the opaque part, i.e.
> | assuming that http://www.tbray.org/ongoing/Biz is a directory, or that
> | http://example.com/foo.html yields HTML when dereferenced.  Does the
> | spec need to be clearer on what's OK and what's not? -Tim
> Yes, if that's what we mean, I think we need to be clearer about what
> part of the URI is opaque. What you're saying is that the scheme part
> is NOT opaque, but everything else is. Adopting that position begs a
> couple of questions:
> - - If the scheme specification explicitly identifies other parts of the URI,
>   does that make those parts transparent as well? For example, suppose that
>   mailto: says that the string that follows it is an email address. Does
>   that mean I can infer that any-damn-fool@nwalsh.com is an email address
>   if I'm presented with this URI: mailto:any-damn-fool@nwalsh.com ?
> - - Does the HTTP spec constrain the range of HTTP URIs to things that are
>   documents (or information resources or whatever we're calling bags of bits
>   the end of a wire these days)?

Boy, Norm known how to reopen can of worms... ;)
Like anything in the TAG work, the problem is to what level of detail (-> mathematical
formalization) you want to go. 
Keeping the usual tag compromise-style so far, I'd say Tim answer is well sufficient, 
and so the answer to the first question is "yes", and I would rephrase the second one to
the same kind of question (do you note the change of wording between the first 
and second q's...? ;) to:
  Does that mean I can infer that http://any-damn-fool-thing-here is an information resource?
To which I would again answer: yes.

Going deeper into this open more the can of worms, forcing you to a more elaborate 
formalization and nitpicking.

Received on Monday, 22 September 2003 13:45:19 UTC

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