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RE: "information resource"

From: <Patrick.Stickler@nokia.com>
Date: Thu, 9 Sep 2004 13:51:56 +0300
Message-ID: <1E4A0AC134884349A21955574A90A7A50ADCB5@trebe051.ntc.nokia.com>
To: <skw@hp.com>, <michael@neonym.net>
Cc: <www-tag@w3.org>

> -----Original Message-----
> From: ext Stuart Williams [mailto:skw@hp.com]
> Sent: 09 September, 2004 13:09
> To: Stickler Patrick (Nokia-TP-MSW/Tampere); michael@neonym.net
> Cc: www-tag@w3.org
> Subject: RE: "information resource"
> > The fact that both I and TimBL come to different conclusions 
> > based on the same document indicates that there is a problem 
> > with the definition of "information resource".
> I think that the document takes no position on whether or not an HTTP
> URI such as the one you cite may or may not be used to denote/identify
> an actual dog.

Per the literal reading, no. My concern was about the potential
for reading additional meaning into AWWW based on the choice
of words for the term "information resource", beyond its actual

My proposal is, and has been, that either the distinction/term
is not needed, or that a different term (label) be associated
with that distinction/definition.

The use of the words "information resource" can be construed
as implicitly supporting TimBL's position rather than taking
a neutral stance pending resolution of httpRange-14.

My explicit proposal would be to replace the words "information resource"
with either "web resource" or "web accessible resource" which IMO
would coincide more precisely with the actual definition and not
potentially imply any position relating to httpRange-14.

> > And I would like to explore what I think is the source of 
> > this confusion and conflict.
> <exploration culled_for_now/>
>  > The TAG needs to make a decision on this issue.
>  >
>  > Either "resources" (a) can be anything that can be named, including
>  > abstract concepts, astrological bodies, persons, etc. and URIs
>  > can denote anything or (b) they must be constrained to things that
>  > correspond to "bodies of information" which can be expressed in a
>  > digital form accessible via the web, and URIs can denote only such
>  > bodies of information.
> AWWW has taken a position on that. AWWW says:
> "We do not limit the scope of what might be a resource. The term 
> "resource" is used in a general sense for whatever might be 
> identified 
> by a URI."
> [1] http://www.w3.org/TR/webarch/#id-resources

I appreciate the literal wording of AWWW on this matter. I'm concerned
simply with implicit meaning or potential interpretations which
extend beyond the literal wording.

This particular post to which you are replying is as much a response
to TimBL's interpretation of the term "information resource" per AWWW
as to the potential for confusion about the meaning of this term.

>  > The latest draft of AWWW still attempts to accomodate both
>  > views, leaving far too much to interpretation -- and
>  > perpetuating the present chaos by allowing those holding view (a)
>  > and those holding view (b) to both reference the same document
>  > as supposedly supporting their view/interpretation and use the same
>  > terms as defined by that document -- yet *still* in actuality
>  > disagree about critically fundamental aspects of web architecture.
> AFAICT tell AWWWW clearly takes position (a) above. Can you show me 
> something in the document that advances position (b)?

The choice of the words "information resource" as the label for the
term used to differentiate web accessible resources from resources
in general.

>  > The interchanges in this very thread illustrate this continuing
>  > ambiguity in AWWW and the very real conflicts of interpretation.
>  >
>  > AWWW should resolve these conflicts of view/interpretation, not
>  > perpetuate them by distilling the wording until either 
> interpretation
>  > is possible.
>  >
>  > Continuing to accomodate the "resource = body of information" view,
>  > however implicitly hidden in clever wording, is simply going to
>  > perpetuate the confusion and prolong the pain...
> Should I interpret that to mean a "body of information" in your view 
> cannot be a resource (...of any kind)?

No. Anything can be a resource. I am opposed to any constraints by
the web architecture on the nature of resources denoted by URIs and
for which representations are made web accessible.

My view, in a nutshell:

Anything can be a resource.
Any resource can be denoted by a URI.
Any resource can have web accessible representations.
A web resource is a resource with web accessible representations.
A representation is a resource.
A representation can be denoted by a distinct URI.
A representation is the atomic primitive of the web.
A representation corresponds to a binary data stream.
The representation of a representation is a bit-equal copy of itself.

The web architecture faciliates interaction with representations of resources.
The semantic web architecture facilitates interaction with descriptions of resources.
The intersection of the web and semantic web architectures are a shared set of URIs.

Received on Thursday, 9 September 2004 10:52:16 UTC

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