W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > uri@w3.org > June 2004

Re: RFC2396bis wording, opinions?

From: Tim Berners-Lee <timbl@w3.org>
Date: Thu, 3 Jun 2004 11:55:46 -0400
Message-Id: <79C5E3F8-B576-11D8-950D-000A9580D8C0@w3.org>
Cc: "'Roy T. Fielding'" <fielding@gbiv.com>, uri@w3.org, "'Pat Hayes'" <phayes@ai.uwf.edu>, "'Dan Connolly'" <connolly@w3.org>
To: Larry Masinter <LMM@acm.org>


On May 29, 2004, at 13:21, Larry Masinter wrote:

> Roy's latest:
>
>      Resource
>>        This document doesn't limit the scope of what might be a 
>> resource;
>>        rather, the term "resource" is used in a general sense for 
>> whatever
>>        might be assigned a URI for the sake of later identification.
>
> I'm unhappy with 'assigned', because the notion of 'assignment'
> of a URI as if it were an act, performed by some authority.

- Well, in most cases I can think of it is.
- When someone publishes a document in HTTP space,
- When someone writes an RDF document published in HTTP space, they 
assign meaning to the URIs which are local identifiers within that 
document.
- When someone mints a uuid and decides to use it for a software 
interface, there is an assignment, if you like, by that person.


> Perhaps some URIs are assigned, (URNs) but for many schemes, there is 
> no
> process of 'assignment'. No one 'assigns' the meaning of a
> 'data' URI, or an HTTP URI with a query parameter.

On the contrary, the owner of a user of the space does assign a meaning 
to an entire space of URIs and for example when publishing an (HTTP GET 
action)  HTML form which points generically into that space. From then 
on, the users of the form share an expectation of what those URIs 
identify as a function of the parameters.

'data' is a case in which the assignment for all URIs is done by the 
scheme definition. Similary, hash URIs.

>  I think
> rather than URIs are _used_, and that they _have_ meaning which
> comes solely from the meaning assigned by interpretation by rules of
> the URI scheme, and not from some other out-of-band communication
> or knowledge.

More or less true.  More: yes, the scheme defines everything.
Less:  actually, the HTTP protocol itself doesn't define that one 
expects to get the same (in some sense) thing when clicking on 
something one has bookmarked. The expectation of persistence is set out 
of band - it may be implicit or mentioned in the document, etc.

>  Bringing in 'assignment' makes it seem like it's
> possible to assign some meaning that is different than the one
> that is naturally derived from the interpretation by the scheme,

I hope not.  The ability to assign for URIs come though the way the 
scheme works.

> without any communication channel for sending that meaning.
>
> So I don't like this as much.

I think one go on removing more and more text, but the current text

    Resource
        This document doesn't limit the scope of what might be a
        'resource'; rather, the term 'resource' is used for whatever it
        is that a Uniform Resource Identifier identifies; each URI scheme
        defines the range of things that are identified by
        URIs using that scheme. Commonly, URIs are used to identify
        Internet accessible objects or services; for example, an 
electronic
        document, an image, a service (e.g., "today's weather report for
        Los Angeles"), a collection of other resources. However,
        a resource need not be accessible via the Internet; URIs might
        be used to identify human beings, corporations, bound books in a
        library, and even abstract concepts.

is good for me.

Tim
Received on Thursday, 3 June 2004 11:55:50 UTC

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