Re: change "URL" to "web address" throughout the HTML 5 spec (Issue-56 urls-webarch)

Replay of IRC comments in email as encouraged:

On Aug 20, 2009, at 17:58, Dan Connolly wrote:

> Please take out the "willful violation" note and replace the
> term URL by web address (or another of your choosing;
> "hypertext reference" met with approval of several interested
> people ).

FWIW, my most preferred term is "URL", but my second most preferred  
term is "Web address". I think hypertext reference, IRI [reference],  
URI [reference], LEIRI [reference], etc. would all be worse here.

> For reference, the term URL is defined in an IETF standard this way:
>   ... The
>   term "Uniform Resource Locator" (URL) refers to the subset of URIs
>   that, in addition to identifying a resource, provide a means of
>   locating the resource by describing its primary access mechanism
>   (e.g., its network "location").
>    --
> and URIs are defined as absolute URIs, so strings such as
> "../xyz" are not URIs (they're URI references) and hence
> they're not URLs. The definition of "web address" does
> include them, meanwhile.

Trying to kill a wildly successful term like URL (as opposed to  
updating the spec to match the success) is on terminology level  
similar to trying to kill a wildly successful format like HTML on the  
technology level instead of updating it. People who can read a "URL"  
on the side of a bus and type it to an address bar and people who  
author links with "URLs" far outnumber RFC lawyers. (Fortunately,  
though, trying to kill a term from the specs isn't as bad as trying to  
kill a format.)

"../xyz" is a "relative URL", and "" is an  
"absolute URL" in common usage.

Henri Sivonen

Received on Friday, 21 August 2009 15:20:01 UTC