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Re: resources and URIs

From: Jonathan Borden <jonathan@openhealth.org>
Date: Mon, 21 Jul 2003 13:15:43 -0400
Message-ID: <013901c34fab$bada81b0$b6f5d3ce@svhs.local>
To: "Tim Bray" <tbray@textuality.com>, "pat hayes" <phayes@ihmc.us>
Cc: "pat hayes" <phayes@ihmc.us>, "Michael Mealling" <michael@neonym.net>, <www-tag@w3.org>

pat hayes wrote:
> >pat hayes wrote:
> >
> >>Well, I think that to deny it would be a dangerous step. although
> >>foolish might be better. Look, to deny this would be to say that
> >>things don't exist until they are given a URI... ah, but now I read
> >>on ....
> >
> >They don't exist on the Web till they have a URI.  What's
> >controversial about that?
> Well, maybe nothing.  What does 'exist on the Web' mean? What is the
> difference between "exists" and "exists on the Web" ? Are these
> related in any way? I guess I find it odd to talk of something being
> brought into (any kind of) existence by something that happens on the
> Web.
> I take existence to mean actual existence, right? Being something in
> the actual world, as in "Sherlock Holmes does not exist".

"Sherlock Holmes" 'exists on the Web' http://www.sherlockian.net/ without
existing in the physical world. If you would prefer to say that a 'concept'
does not exist, then we can alternatively say that a resource _is not part
of_ the Web until it is given a URI. Alternatively: A "thing" is not a
member of the class of "WebResources" unless the thing is identified by a

The world we are talking about here is defined by URI coordinates. In the
same fashion we might define criteria for a thing to exist in the physical
world e.g. as occupying a certain volume/location in x,y,z,t space etc. I
think we can make a strong analogy between existence on the Web and
existence in the physical world as long as we get our coordinates right.

This is all wordsmithing, but in the context of defining architectural
principles, it is important to get the base definitions correct.

Received on Monday, 21 July 2003 13:15:52 UTC

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