W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-tag@w3.org > March 2002

Re: cost of new/private URI schemes well known? [was: section 1, intro, for review]

From: Steven Livingstone <s.livingstone@btinternet.com>
Date: Tue, 19 Mar 2002 22:33:58 -0000
Message-ID: <008d01c1cf96$324f8200$8119fea9@bobo>
To: <www-tag@w3.org>
Well, dare i say it, one of the problems i see with URI's is that they are
scalar, but they are being used in non-scalar ways.

The "about:blah" assumes the consuming app knows how to use the "about"
identifier - ie. about is being used to define almost a "protocol/mime"
albeit an application. I guess it's like a cross between a MIME type and a
URI i see. The URI identifies something and the MIME type says how consuming
apps use it. But then URI's have nothing of this information in it - they
are far broader.

If people could define some standard additions to URI's so that, like MIME
types, we know how to handle certain URI's (or at least give a consuming app
some knowledge) then we could do a lot more.

It's great that we have the idea of assigning a URI to two email addresses
so we can effectively address only one, but i have no idea right now how,
for example, a consuming email client would know this identifes a email
address type rather some other application specific type. Why not say
something is WebTV specific in a standard way that is still unique?

I have some ideas on how this could be done - ie. "domain.com/myID:uri" is
not much diferent from "about:blah", but we could at least identify
"microsoft.com:about" from "netscape:about"....

Only thoughts, but as i'm working on my own "deltabis.com/auth:steven_L"
ideas then maybe skewed.


----- Original Message -----
From: "Dan Connolly" <connolly@w3.org>
To: "Paul Prescod" <paul@prescod.net>
Cc: <www-tag@w3.org>
Sent: Tuesday, March 19, 2002 10:14 PM
Subject: cost of new/private URI schemes well known? [was: section 1, intro,
for review]

> On Mon, 2002-03-18 at 20:10, Paul Prescod wrote:
> > Chris Lilley wrote:
> > >
> > > ...
> > >
> > > Okay, but with a flourish I can produce the URI
> > > zip://atm.example.org/06902 or, worse, zip:06902 but just because
> > > these now have URIs does not lessen in any way their proprietary
> > > nature, and the second one is probably not dereferencable either.
> >
> > Okay, but
> >
> >  1. Why would anyone do such a thing? People know that non-HTTP URI
> > schemes have a massive barrier to acceptance.
> Ha!
> er.. ahem...
> Would that it were so.
> As maintainer of an index of URI schemes,
>   http://www.w3.org/Addressing/schemes
> I can tell you, they don't. I can't even
> keep up with all the crazy new URI
> schemes I hear about.
> I went looking into why mozilla parsed
> irc://irc.openprojects.net/rdfig
> as a relative URI, and found that they
> treat new URI schemes potatoe chips: "crunch
> all you want. We'll make more."
> KDE likewise.
> Mozilla has since cleaned up their act a little;
> I know they fixed
> http://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=2110
> I haven't looked into KDE in a while.
> Nor have I checked whether this persists:
>   To the question "how many private URL schemes are there?," the
>   answer was given that there were perhaps 20-40 in use at
>   Microsoft, with 2-3 being added a day; WebTV has 24, with
>   6/year added. Maybe others have similar number of schemes.
>   -- minutes of the
>   Uniform Resource Locator Registration Procedures (urlreg) WG meeting
>   at the 39th IETF Meeting in Munich, Bavaria, Germany, Aug 1997
>   http://www.ietf.org/proceedings/97aug/transit97aug-30.htm
> You might think that these schemes are just private and
> they don't matter. But then try using one in an HTML
> document from the web, say:
> <a href="about:plugins">...</a>
> and you'll quickly realize that it is an interoperability
> issue: nobody else can use about: without bumping
> into mozilla/netscape's use of it.
> Then there's stuff like opaquelocktoken: and DAV:
> that went all the way thru the IETF standards
> process without much consideration of the cost
> of real-estate in the URI scheme list.
> (which, I suppose, is not really all that high,
> in this case...)
> Norm/Stuart/Ian, please let's add something to
> section 2 on naming about the costs of
> new URI schemes. Maybe it doesn't fit
> in the one-page version, but before
> we'er done elaborating, please let's.
> By way of suggested text, see:
>   The danger of too many accesses schemes
> in
>   http://www.w3.org/DesignIssues/Model.html
> --
> Dan Connolly, W3C http://www.w3.org/People/Connolly/
Received on Tuesday, 19 March 2002 17:34:33 UTC

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