Re: URI Revised charter proposal

Ronald E. Daniel (
Thu, 6 Jul 1995 10:46:43 -0600

From: "Ronald E. Daniel" <>
Message-Id: <>
Date: Thu, 6 Jul 1995 10:46:43 -0600
In-Reply-To: Leslie Daigle <>
To: Leslie Daigle <>,
Subject: Re: URI Revised charter proposal

On Jul 5,  8:52pm, Leslie Daigle wrote:

> I've attached
> a revised proposal for the URI working group charter.

Thanks for doing this Leslie.

> The most major departure that I have proposed is that the charter outlines
> moving URL and URN documents to standards, and explicitly states that
> other pieces of the URI puzzle (proposed:  URC's and URA's; maybe URP's)
> should be considered by the group and moved as informational or experimental
> documents.

Hmmm. I really think that we should have a standard for URCs, since
they are the means for mapping URNs to URLs and both of those are to
be standardized. Since standardization is the goal, I don't want to
put out a charter saying it is not.

> Thus, I would envision revising this working group's charter in a year
> (when URNs and URLs are sorted out :-)  to propose moving some of those
> on to standards, and evaluate others as informational/experimental.  Or,
> by that time, they may have migrated to new working groups formed to deal
> specifically with that part of the whole Internet puzzle.

>From a technical aspect I think it is OK to say we will concentrate on
URNs this year and experiment with URC, URAs, ... However, since the
IESG has said "no research!", I think it is a bad idea to write the
charter for the group in such a fashion. Larry can probably comment on
this better than I, but my impression is that we should not expect to
revise the charter every year. We have to do it now because the
original charter is basically complete and just about all of us think
that the group has a lot more useful work to do.

It may be that new working groups will be formed to deal with other
pieces of the UR puzzle. However, we should cross that bridge when
we come to it.

> So, specifically, from Ron Daniel's proposed URI-WG charter, I have dropped:
> > Review URC proposals and select one to go forward as a proposed
> > standard. Discussion should be largely complete by the spring
> > '96 IETF, and a "last call" should be issued before the summer '96
> > meeting.

For the reasons above, I oppose dropping this from the charter.
We can certainly argue about timelines.

> ====================================================
> The URI-WG is chartered to define a set of standards for the encoding of
> system-independent resource identification, description, and location
> information for the use of Internet information services.
> The working group is expected to produce a set of documents that specify
> standard representations of Uniform Resource Names (URNs) for resource
> identification, and Uniform Resource Locations (URLs) for resource location.

Re-insert material about standardizing URCs for resource description.
We may also want a line about an informational RFC that lays out the
UR architecture, and another that talks about what is and is
not a URI, thus telling us the sorts of proposals (URAs, URPs, ...)
that are and are not in the purview of this working group.

>   Review the Uniform Resource Agents draft, ca. the Stockholm meeting.
>   Recommend a course of action for that work before Dallas. If the
>   work receives approval of the WG, the draft should be revised in
>   time for Dallas, and the last call for an informational/experimental
>   RFC should be expected in time for the summer '96 IETF.  

In an earlier message, Larry said:

: I don't know why we need to wait to discuss what we're going to do
: with URAs. I think there are three choices:
: a) Drop the topic from the WG
: b) Promote them as 'experimental RFC'
: c) promote them as 'proposed standard' RFC
: I don't think (c) is reasonable, so the question is whether you want
: to do (b) in the WG.

I think that procedural methods are a useful way to identify resources,
so I would oppose (A). Looks like we are converging on (B), although
for different reasons. I suggest we change that part of the charter
to state that the URA draft will be discussed and an informational
or experimental RFC issued.

>   Review the competing URN proposals.  Determine an evaluation process for
>   comparing the merits of each based on a) performance, and b) how well
>   they support the identified URN requirements and compile results of the
>   evalutation for discussion at the Dallas IETF.
>   Determine an interim URN syntax for the purposes of evaluating URN
>   proposals shortly after the Stockholm IETF.

I'm sorry Leslie, but I don't think this last item is possible. Why
should the proponents of the various URN schemes find an interim
solution easier to agree on than a full one? Especially since interim
solutions on the Internet have a way of turning into the one true way?
IMHO, we are better off spending that effort on the evaluation process
you suggest in the previous item.


> [Dallas IETF  -- LLD]
>   Revise the URL document (RFC 1738) and move it to the next step on the
>   standards track, taking into account the comments of the IESG
>   at the time they went to Draft Standard.

Why is this last item after Dallas instead of before? Roy, what sort
of time would you like ot put on this?

Ron Daniel Jr.                email:
Advanced Computing Lab        voice: (505) 665-0597
MS B-287  TA-3  Bldg. 2011      fax: (505) 665-4939
Los Alamos National Lab
Los Alamos, NM,  87545    tautology: "Conformity is very popular"