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RE: Fwd: Splitting vs. Interpreting

From: Williams, Stuart (HP Labs, Bristol) <skw@hp.com>
Date: Thu, 18 Jun 2009 17:16:08 +0000
To: "Sean B. Palmer" <sean@miscoranda.com>
CC: Xiaoshu Wang <wangxiao@musc.edu>, "david@dbooth.org" <david@dbooth.org>, "www-tag@w3.org" <www-tag@w3.org>
Message-ID: <233101CD2D78D64E8C6691E90030E5C832D269E097@GVW1120EXC.americas.hpqcorp.net>
Hello Sean,

> -----Original Message-----
> From: sean.b.palmer@googlemail.com 
> [mailto:sean.b.palmer@googlemail.com] On Behalf Of Sean B. Palmer
> Sent: 18 June 2009 17:41
> To: Williams, Stuart (HP Labs, Bristol)
> Cc: Xiaoshu Wang; david@dbooth.org; www-tag@w3.org
> Subject: Re: Fwd: Splitting vs. Interpreting
> On Thu, Jun 18, 2009 at 4:57 PM, Williams, Stuart (HP Labs, 
> Bristol) wrote:
> > Well... http://www.w3.org/TR/webarch is pretty clear in its one and only
> > diagram that what is obtained from the web are awww:representation of
> > a resource as opposed to the resource itself.
> But it doesn't say that representation and resource are disjoint.
> You could make a URI that denotes "the first representation obtained
> per RFC 2616 from this URI", and as far as I know that would be
> consistent with AWWW. Of course it would be very peculiar.

Yes... but would that be the same URI as the one that was used to obtain that first representation? I don't think so. 
Also would representations of resource 'denoted' by that URI be byte wise identical to the original representation?

I was trying to respond to Pat's final para:

	I agree the two roles are distinct, but one and the same thing might be 
	both the shared thing and the topic of the content represented in that 
	shared thing. And in this case, we *can* know what the URi denotes. In 
	fact, this is how referents are attached to things in daily life, by explicit 
	ostention. I pass you a book, and I say "read this, you will enjoy it". 
	My referential word "this" is attached to the actual book by the causal 
	nexus of my utterance being linked to the act of passing the actual book. 
	What http-range-14 says is just like this, in a Web setting. If you toss a 
	URI at me and I pass you back a 200-coded reply, I am in effect saying 
	"This entity involved in the this transaction, here and now, is what you 
	are asking about; it is the thing that the name you just used refers to".

I was/am inclined to object a little, suggesting what is in fact being said by the 200-reply is:

	"This entity involved in the this transaction, here and now, is a representation of you 
	are asking about; it conveys a view of the thing that the name you just used refers to".

But I've also tried to take Pat's 'saying' as written and wonder then about the consequences.

	- that the referent can change with time. (which of course is possible with un-cool URIs anyway).
        ie. the association of the name with the particular entity is only of the moment.

	- that the referent is an immutable resource with a single invariant representation (type rather than token[*])
	  which is literally the resource.

Of course Pat might also tell me that what he, as the user of the name, was referring to is quite different from whatever I might have 'baptised' with the name - and that nothing can prevent the same name being used to refer to different things in different usages.

[*] webarch is not clear about whether representations are 'types' that categorise sets of messages (events with temporal/spatial/network extent) or the individual messages themselves, 'tokens', which although byte equivalent occupy a different extent.

> (You might want to consider whether it would need to return a 303.)


> -- 
> Sean B. Palmer, http://inamidst.com/sbp/

Received on Thursday, 18 June 2009 17:17:18 UTC

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