Problem with mail URLs - was Re: Second round...

Rob Raisch (raisch@internet.com)
Tue, 10 Jan 1995 15:48:06 -0500


Message-Id: <199501102047.AA10965@ahhh.internet.com>
From: "Rob Raisch" <raisch@internet.com>
To: ietf-lists@proper.com (Paul Hoffman),
Date:          Tue, 10 Jan 1995 15:48:06 -0500
Subject:       Problem with mail URLs - was Re: Second round...

I have a concern I'd like to air.  Actually, it's more of a nagging feeling of
unease than a concern.  But here goes...

There is a question in my mind regarding the purpose to which we would like to
put URLs.  The crux of this question is that mailto: and mailserver: do not, I
believe, describe means which can be used to retrieve network resources.  

I have always understood a URL to be composed of three important parts:

	- How we will retrieve the stated resource  -- (http, gopher, etc.)
	- From where we will retrieve a resource -- (host:port)
	- What resource we will retrieve -- (opaque URL specific info)


Rather than a prescription which can be used to retrieve network accessible
resources, these URLs provide a means of initiating a process, which can,
perhaps, initiate the retrieval of a network accessible resource -- through a
channel external to the browser, but is not necessarily required to.  We seem
to already have a method of initiating processes such as these, the CGI API, no?

Now, is it just me or does this grate on others as well?  I don't think that we
really understand what we did when we defined the mailto: URL, and guess I am
concerned how this will affect our understanding and the ultimate deployment of
URNs. 


Comments?

		</rr>