W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > uri@w3.org > April 2010

Re: backronym proposal: Universal Resource Linker

From: Ian Hickson <ian@hixie.ch>
Date: Sun, 18 Apr 2010 20:13:31 +0000 (UTC)
To: Dan Brickley <danbri@danbri.org>
Cc: uri@w3.org, Tim Berners-Lee <timbl@w3.org>
Message-ID: <Pine.LNX.4.64.1004182013110.751@ps20323.dreamhostps.com>
On Sun, 18 Apr 2010, Dan Brickley wrote:
> I'll keep this short. The official term for Web identifiers, URI, isn't 
> widely known or understood. The I18N-friendly variant IRI confuses many 
> (are we all supposed to migrate to use it; or just in our specs?), while 
> the most widely used, understood and (for many) easiest to pronounce, 
> 'URL' (for Uniform Resource Locator) has been relegated to 'archaic 
> form' status. At the slightest provocation this community dissapears 
> down the rathole of URI-versus-URN, and until this all settles down we 
> are left with an uncomfortable disconnect between how those in-the-know 
> talk about Web identifiers, and those many others who merely use it.
> As of yesterday, I've been asked "but what is a URI?" one too many 
> times. I propose a simple-minded fix: restore 'URL' as the most general 
> term for Web identifiers, and re-interpret 'URL' as "Universal Resource 
> Linker". Most people won't care, but if they investigate, they'll find 
> out about the re-naming. This approach avoids URN vs URI kinds of 
> distinction, scores 2 out of 3 for use of intelligible words, and is 
> equally appropriate to classic browser/HTML, SemWeb and other technical 
> uses. What's not to like? The Web is all about links, and urls are how 
> we make them...

I think that would be a fantastic idea.

Ian Hickson               U+1047E                )\._.,--....,'``.    fL
http://ln.hixie.ch/       U+263A                /,   _.. \   _\  ;`._ ,.
Things that are impossible just take longer.   `._.-(,_..'--(,_..'`-.;.'
Received on Sunday, 18 April 2010 20:14:00 UTC

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