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Re: My action item on Moby Dec, issue 14, etc

From: Tim Bray <tbray@textuality.com>
Date: Thu, 19 Sep 2002 09:15:28 -0700
Message-ID: <3D89F820.8000000@textuality.com>
To: Norman Walsh <Norman.Walsh@Sun.COM>
Cc: www-tag@w3.org

Norman Walsh wrote:

> The error, I think, is that you've brought representations into the
> picture. The important part about "Absolute URI references are
> unambiguous: Each absolute URI reference unambiguously identifies one
> resource." isn't the consistency of the representations you can
> dereference, it's the fact that they're fully qualified and globally
> unique. That's why we can paint them on billboards, write them on
> busses, and flash them in commercials.

OK, I think that what you're saying is that a resource is simply that 
which is identified by a URI.  I agree with this and think it's 
consistent with the 2396 definition too.  Given this, our "principle" is 
a tautology and not in the slightest worth saying.

Spin it another way: the URI, and the representations you can (maybe) 
get with it, are all there is.  There is no point in arguing about the 
fundamental nature of what the URI identifies and what the 
representations represent, because (a) you can never know, and (b) it 
doesn't matter.

Furthermore, in the context of using URIs to build KR systems a la RDF, 
the notion that you can banish ambiguity by architectural fiat is simply 
wrong and dangerous to the future of the semantic web. -Tim
Received on Thursday, 19 September 2002 12:15:30 UTC

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