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Initial Feedback on Web Arch W-D

From: Hammond, Tony (ELSLON) <T.Hammond@elsevier.com>
Date: Thu, 11 Dec 2003 10:56:52 -0000
Message-ID: <54A600C436EA694581B93E4BD4D4788A06B73E49@elslonexc004.eslo.co.uk>
To: "'public-webarch-comments@w3.org'" <public-webarch-comments@w3.org>


Listed below some initial feedback on the Web Arch W-D.


Tony Hammond
Advanced Technology Group, Elsevier
32 Jamestone Road, London NW1 7BY, UK


A - General Comments:

* Sect 4 is entitled 'Data Formats', and Sect 1, 3rd bullet has 'Formats'.
Would suggest that both should be changed to 'Representation' in keeping
with the 3 bases articulated in the Abstract (identification, interaction,
representation). This shift in gears from representation to data formats is
potentially confusing. Maybe within the section one could talk of data
formats (as a more concrete realization of the abstraction
'representation'), but I think the section (and bullet) are better labeled
at the more generic/abstract level.

* Almost all the Story examples seem to make use of HTTP URIs. Any chance of
sneaking in some other URI schemes just here and there just to reinforce
that the fact that this is a democrarcy not a monarchy? Perhaps even just a
mailto, or urn, or something more exotic? 

* Sect 5 - Term Index. Maybe missing some terms? Would be useful to see
'Web' (and 'WWW', 'World Wide Web'), 'URI' (as a 'see Unifo...'
cross-reference), 'Data Format', 'Media Type' (maybe).

* Sect 6 - References. Still minded to have a division between normative and
informative refs. Otherwise seems rather haphazard like the Web itself. Cf.
the [IETFXML] entry: 'This IETF Internet Draft is available at .... If this
document is no longer available, refer to...' And BTW, my understanding is
that I-Ds should ony be referenced as a work in progress. Same with [IRI]
entry below.


B - Specific Comments:

* Sect 2.4, 3rd para, 1st sentence, 'While the Web architecture...' - change
'is costly' to 'can be costly'?

* Sect 2.4, 3rd para, 3rd sentence, 'Introducing a new URI scheme...' -
change 'requires' to 'may require'?

* Sect 2.4, last para, last sentence - 'When an agent does not handle a new
URI scheme, it cannot retrieve a representation.' This seems prejudicial, as
if the only intersting operations are retrieval. An agent can already make
use of the identitiy afforded by a URI and comparison of URIs in
applications such as merging of RDF graphs or of merging Topic Maps which
identify resources by means of URIs.

(Rationale for the above comments is that there may be an underlying
assumption here that new URI schemes introduce new dereference mechanisms -
and consequent need for agents to support the same. This is not necesarily
the case, cf the "info" URI scheme


which explicitly excludes dereference.)

* Sect 2.4.1, 2nd para, 3rd bullet, 'One should not expect...' - suggest
change from 'will do anything useful with URIs of this scheme' to something
like 'will do anything with URIs of this scheme beyond comparison' or some
other wording.

(There is the problem here that unregistered scheme URIs may not be
authoritatively compared. OTOH if we have a registered scheme URI and an
unregistered scheme URI *using the same scheme* - can we authoritatively
compare them? Anyway, the point I am trying to bring out in this comment is
that URI identity/comparison is in and of itself a powerful utility, beyond

* Sect 3, last para ('Note') before Sect 3.1. I would strongly query the
sentence 'Informally, a resource is "on the Web" when it has a URI and an
agent can use the URI to retrieve a representation of it ...'. I would
rather say that a resource is "on the Web" when it is referenced by means of
a URI. That would seem to me to be a full and sufficient condition. A
resource referenced by a URI participates within the Web information space
and assertions can be made about that resource.

* Sect 3.6.2, 1st para. Should clarify here that 'URI persistence' actualy
refers to persistence of the referenced resource, not to the URI. (That
point is made in the [Cool] reference entry but should be made here and not
in the refrence section.)

* Sect 4.1. Suggest to interchange 1st and 2nd paras to reflect order in
section title.

* Sect 4.5.5, 1st para, 2nd sentence. 'A qualified name is a pair consisting
of a URI,..., and a local name...' Surely the qualified name itself consists
of a 'prefix' which represents the URI (i.e. is a URI placeholder), and a
local name? 


C - Typos, etc:

* Sect 1.2, 1st sentence - 'apply to across', strike word 'to'?

* Sect 2.3.1, last sentence - 'arises a URI' - missing word 'when' ->
'arises when a URI'?

* Sect 4.2.2, 'Story', last sentence - 'choose' not 'chose' (wrong tense)?

* Sect 4.2.2, penultimate para, last sentence - 'W3C constrains the set
possible changes' - missing word 'of' -> 'set of possible'?

* Sect 4.3, 1st para, 4th sentence, 'Experience shows that the allowing
authors' - strike word 'the'?

* Sect 4.4, last para, 2nd sntence, 'Users of the hypertext links' - strike
word 'the'?

* Sect 4.5.8, 1st para, last sentence, 'provides a interoperable starting
point' - change word 'a' to 'an'?

Received on Thursday, 11 December 2003 06:57:19 UTC

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