W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > uri@w3.org > April 2001

Re: Tag syntax (was Re: Proposal: 'tag' URIs)

From: Tim Kindberg <timothy@hpl.hp.com>
Date: Sat, 28 Apr 2001 11:07:16 -0700
Message-Id: <>
To: "Sean B. Palmer" <sean@mysterylights.com>
Cc: <uri@w3.org>
At 06:08 PM 4/28/01 +0100, Sean B. Palmer wrote:
>Well, I really like this idea; I liked it when I first saw the TANN
>proposal, and I like it even more now that it has moved onto "tag".
>This is an excellent solution to the Semantic Web identification and
>vancing problem, and I really can't wait to start implementing it,
>which is why I'd like to help as much as possible without getting it
>the way [always a danger] :-) There's an odd balance here of getting
>it done quickly, and getting it done properly... sometimes if one
>dwells upon something too much, it can still end up being "wrong", so
>sometimes it's best to go with the gut instinct. For example,
>cognitively I prefer "tann:" to "tag:" because of the fact that "tag"
>is quite a common word, but I much prefer "tag" to "tann"
>phenomically. It just sounds better... "minting a tag". Also, I'd
>rather give a concept a "tag" than a "tann": "tag" just sounds right
>for the task. It is somewhat unfortunate that the syntactic details of
>new URI schemes are always the hang-up.

Sandro and I debated the name: I'd already named it 'tag' when it was 
pointed out to me that he had a similar idea with tann. I think Sandro and 
I are both comfortable with tag now -- speaking for myself, for the sort of 
reasons you adduce (I'm a bit of a phenomicalist myself :-)).

> > tag://champignon.net;9/fred
> > and
> > http://champignon.net:9/fred
>Well, if people take tags to be synonymous with HTTP URIs, then they
>aren't really understanding the nature of URI schemes. The only thing
>that you can deduce from a URI that you do not know the scheme of is
>what you can tell from the URI RFC, *not* from how it looks compared
>to other URIs; that is a very dangerous practice, IMO. The added value
>that you get with the "//" is that the following piece is an
>"authority component". Coupled with the fact that ";" indicates a
>parameter, you can take tag://champignon.net;9/fred as being comprised
>of the following components:-

We can't legislate against lack of understanding but we can try to avoid 
it, especially if it costs us little or nothing to do so.

>    "tag://champignon.net;9/fred" is a URI
>    "champignon.net;9" is an authority component (ac)
>    "champignon.net" and "9" are parameters of the ac
>Which is correct, is it not?

Yes (to the last two -- I haven't agreed to your syntax!)

>If anyone asked, I'd suggest that the authority component of the
>"tag:" URI scheme is a conceptual registry that is identified by time
>and space, rather than a database of information stored on some
>computer. Of course, this is one of the major advantages of the "tag:"
>URI scheme!

'Conceptual registry' doesn't do it for me. Does anyone know of such URI 
schemes that contain 'real registry' identifiers in their authority 
components -- just for the sake of comparison?



Tim Kindberg

internet & mobile systems lab  hewlett-packard laboratories
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Received on Saturday, 28 April 2001 13:52:26 UTC

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