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Re: "information resource"

From: Stuart Williams <skw@hp.com>
Date: Thu, 09 Sep 2004 15:19:11 +0100
Message-ID: <4140665F.5010008@hp.com>
To: Patrick.Stickler@nokia.com
CC: michael@neonym.net, www-tag@w3.org

Hello Patrick,

Patrick.Stickler@nokia.com wrote:

>>-----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
Ok... so it is not what the document actually says that troubles you, 
but the potential for folks to read more deeply than intended into the 
concept currently labelled "information resource". Is that a fair summary?

>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.
So... would a different label for the concept, assuming we find one that 
met with general approval, address your original comment [1] to your 
satisfaction? ie. the concept stays, but we give it a different label . 
I think that you are saying here and below that it would - although it's 
clear that you would prefer that no distinction were made.

>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.
Apart from the choice of label for the concept we have currently 
labelled "information resource"... is there anything else that you have 
found in the document that could be construed as an implicit 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.
This again suggests, well more than suggests, that a change in label 
could address the comment to your satisfaction.


>> > 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 
>>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.
A natural problem with natural language...

>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.
I understand that, and TimBL has been challenged by others to support 
his interpretation by reference to the document itself. There may be a 
separate thread to be had on that topic (and I suspect you can find 
several ready made such threads in this archive :-)) but the topic in 
hand on this thread is or should be about what if anything needs to 
change in the document to satisfactorally address your comment.

>> > 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.
So again, a different term label has potential to address your comment?

>> > 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 
>> > 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.
I guess its is good that AWWW doesn't seek to place any then, repeating 
the quotation above:

"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 
by a URI."

>My view, in a nutshell:
<skipped> might respond in a separate thread</skipped>

Received on Thursday, 9 September 2004 14:20:01 UTC

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