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making progress on httpRange-14 -- yet another suggestion

From: Henry S. Thompson <ht@inf.ed.ac.uk>
Date: Tue, 03 May 2005 20:16:21 +0100
To: www-tag@w3.org
Message-ID: <f5b4qdkunlm.fsf@erasmus.inf.ed.ac.uk>

One challenge in permathread-based discussions like this is to try to
get beyond the brute facts of disagreement to the _reasons_ for the
disagreement, particularly when the infrastructure of terminology and
technology background is as complex as it is in this case.

So wrt the second of my proposed dimensions [1], Differentiation, that
there is disagreement is clear: some parties to this discussion (want
to) use ordinary http: URIs as names for concepts, abstractions,
properties, etc., i.e. things which are not information resources, and
other parties think this is a bad idea, that ordinary http: URIs
should be reserved for things you can retrieve.  Fine, we all knew
that.  Now, the hard part -- _why_ does this disagreement arise?

What have we got so far in this regard:

Dan Connolly says [2]

 "Folks that use hashless [ordinary http:] URIs for things other than
  information resources are making things more difficult either for
  themselves or for others."

OK -- why/how does this make things more difficult. . .?

Harry Halpin says [3]

 "The Semantic Web makes as its central claim that a URI is a global
  identifier that can be shared across various boundaries. It is as
  yet unclear when mixing the SemWeb and the OFWeb exactly how to
  maintain that notion of identity."

OK -- why do we need or want to maintain that notion of identity
across the SemWeb/OFWeb boundary?  What potential damage is there for
one or the other?

>From the other position, Roy Fielding says [4]

 "There is no way that a system can determine whether a user has
  supplied a URI for the purpose of direct, ontologically unambiguous
  identification of a resource, or of simple indirect identification
  via whatever URI seems most useful at the time.  That is a problem
  of reference that will not be solved by changing the syntax of the
  identifiers."

OK -- _why_ won't "[Signalling by e.g.] changing the syntax of the
identifiers [solve the problem]"?

I think Roy Fielding's other contribution [5] is intended to provide
argumentation wrt _why_ internal Signalling can't work, but I haven't
understood it yet . . .

ht

[1] http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/www-tag/2005Apr/0086.html
[2] http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/www-tag/2005Apr/0094.html
[3] http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/www-tag/2005Apr/0097.html
[4] http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/www-tag/2005May/0002.html
[5] http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/www-tag/2005May/thread.html
-- 
 Henry S. Thompson, HCRC Language Technology Group, University of Edinburgh
                     Half-time member of W3C Team
    2 Buccleuch Place, Edinburgh EH8 9LW, SCOTLAND -- (44) 131 650-4440
            Fax: (44) 131 650-4587, e-mail: ht@inf.ed.ac.uk
                   URL: http://www.ltg.ed.ac.uk/~ht/
[mail really from me _always_ has this .sig -- mail without it is forged spam]
Received on Tuesday, 3 May 2005 19:16:30 GMT

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