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Re: Revisiting namespaceDocument-8

From: Norman Walsh <Norman.Walsh@Sun.COM>
Date: Tue, 28 Jun 2005 10:18:14 -0400
To: www-tag@w3.org
Message-id: <87k6kebm55.fsf@nwalsh.com>
/ noah_mendelsohn@us.ibm.com was heard to say:
| Now the questions about namespaces:  is a namespace an information 
| resource and therefore the sort of thing that can respond with a 200? 
| Certainly it's abstract in a way that the poet is not.  It has no mass and 
| won't knock you over if you run into it.   Web Arch characterizes an 
| information resource as  one for which  "all of their essential 
| characteristics can be conveyed in a message"[1] What are the essential 
| characteristics of a namespace, and can they be completely conveyed? 

I expect there's a gray area somewhere between cars, which we seem to
have agreement are not information resources and poems which we seem
to have agreement are information resources.

I'm comfortable saying that a namespace name is an information
resource. Namespaces are a mechanism for disambiguating local names
and I think anything you could want to express about them, you could
express in a message.

I think if we went looking, we could probably find poets and
philosophers willing to argue that there were ineffable,
non-information qualities about poems. I don't think the web
architecture would be improved by doing so. By the same token, I don't
think the architecture is harmed by saying that a namespace name is an
information resource.

| Obviously, the last thing I'd advocate is a full reopening of 
| httpRange-14, but I do think it's worth convincing ourselves that the 
| resolution we've adopted can be applied consistently and conveniently to 
| the important case of namespaces and their descriptions.   If we stick 
| with our resolution of httpRange-14, then I think we need to be prepared 
| to set out what the information is that "comprises a namespace", so that 
| we can show that it can be "conveyed", or else we need to suggest use of 
| two URI's and a 303 for each namespace.

I put my stake in the sand above. :-)

                                        Be seeing you,
                                          norm

-- 
Norman.Walsh@Sun.COM / XML Standards Architect / Sun Microsystems, Inc.
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Received on Tuesday, 28 June 2005 14:18:19 GMT

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