Minutes of the UR-NG BOF held 20 July, 1995

Jim Conklin (conklin@info.cren.net)
Fri, 21 Jul 1995 10:17:14 +0100

Message-Id: <199507210816.EAA23572@info.cren.net>
Date: Fri, 21 Jul 1995 10:17:14 +0100
To: uri@bunyip.com
From: conklin@info.cren.net (Jim Conklin)
Subject: Minutes of the UR-NG BOF held 20 July, 1995
Cc: Larry Masinter <masinter@parc.xerox.com>

  Here are my impressions of what went on at the UR-NG BOF, to
supplement Larry's messages for those of you who weren't present.  I
tried sending them out previously but mis-addressed them.  Apologies.

  John Klensin began the meeting by polling the group on its familiarity
with the finger and mail RFCs and the draft proposals for finger and
mailserver URL specifications.  Based on the (lack of) response from the
group assembled, John determined that those present were not adequately
informed to recommend acceptance of these drafts and stated that he'd
gather special, temporary groups of knowledgeable people for review of
these two proposals.
  Klensin went on to state that the URI chair (Larry Masinter) had
failed to provide him with requested information, which constituted
grounds for dismissal, and that the WG was being disbanded.  Larry
objected to this, explaining that he had not been able to provide the
requested document at the time it was requested because he was in the
process of actively revising it and the only copy he had was marked with
revisions.  He stated that he had promised to provide it to John as soon
as possible.  He then handed Klensin a copy of the document.
  John then opened the floor for proposals for future activities related
to uniform resource identifiers, etc.
  Chris Weider proposed splitting the WG activities into two parts, one
going to the IRTF, the other to a new IETF WG.  Discussion ensued.
  Massinter proposed the following as future Working Group activities
that should be considered.  They are documented in detail in his mail of
this afternoon to the WG.
    A.  Finish URI work on URLs
    B.  URC syntax and structure
    C.  Information resolution
    D.  URI status & relationsips of current proposals (modified in
           the meeting from Larry's initial version)
    E.  Bibliographic resource description(s)

  Chris suggested that Larry's areas A and B (and C, I think) were
parallel to his ideas about what should be done by IETF, and that he had
some concerns about E.  (I didn't catch his comments about D, and I'm
not sure I heard him correctly on C.)

  Larry suggested that the URC syntax group should cover the
registration mechanism in its activities.  Chris agreed.  Larry (I
think) proposed that, in B, the syntax should be done first, followed by
defining the mechanism for registration, and that the group not look at
[extensions?], which is a "rathole".  Masinter agreed.

  Moore questioned whether IETF should be doing E at all.  Someone
suggested that there's an enormous benefit from an greement on a general
outline of a solution for resource description.  [Discussion]

  Alvestrand focussed on the sequencing of these groups.  Group A needs
to follow B.  C can't proceed until after syntax defined.  [Massinter: C
has to define syntax.]  E should be started after B has concluded
[Massinter disagrees].  [discussion]  Moore questions the benefit of E,
others disagree.  Ron [?]: A start on the activities of group E exists
within the SGML WG.   Craig Sumerhill indicated that there are severar
people from the library community who feel strongly that E is needed now
and would be interested in working on it.

  Massinter called for interest in working on A.  [Harald Alvestrand
noted that an alternative procedure for vetting URLs could be simply
that "URL standards must be standards-track".  This seemed popular.]
Weider suggested that A, B, and C are non-controversial and can proceed.
Need chairs and critical mass of people, however.  There were a couple
of volunteers, more probably needed.  Moore: issues with human-
readability presumption of URCs, would like "syntax" changed to [?].

  Group C:  Massinter feels that his proposed charter and milestones are
too vague to be adequate.  Weider exoects to get generic syntax, interim
report, and protocol for speaking to a URN as issues that they can
resolve by Dec'95.  He proposes narrowing the charter of C to these
issues, and putting the others off to a later group.  And that current
URN resolution proposals go straight to experimental.  [GET REVISIONS O
B E CO-CHAIR?]  Need to create real charter and milestones.

  Group D:  Short term.  Descriptive document of current situation.  Is
it really useful?  Lots of interest in seeing the document written
[Massinter], but does it need a WG?  Perhaps best done by a small group
of individuals, then proposed to Area Directors as Informational RFC.
Craig Summerhill noted that CNI is working on a similar document,
suggested possible joint authorship; Avrum[? a co-author] disagreed; no
resolution at the meeting.  Strike URAs from the goals for this group;
they're really a separate issue.

Group E:  Stu Weibel (OCLC) volunteered to chair this group.

Ron raised the concern about the need to address the caching and
replication issue, and how to handle this.  In the IRTF?  Keith noted
that he and Roxanne tried to write a charter and discovered that more
research needs to be done first, thereby lending credance to the idea of
making this an IRTF project.  Seconded by others, with the suggestion
that research already in progress can help this move along in a timely
fashion.  Weider indicated that he won't be satisfied with the IRTF
groups he's proposing unless they're open and/or include considerable

  Klensin expressed his appreciation, especially to Larry, for not
having been crucified (yet) and asked that we send whatever additional
input we might care to provide to him or to Harald Alvastrand.