Re: HTTP URIs and authority

Xiaoshu Wang writes:

> - The URI identifies the city.
> - The *representation* that people gets back by dereferencing the 
> URI with HTTP protocol is your *impression*. 

I don't think the word impression is really appropriate here.  Let's say 
that I assign resource to the poem that 
is popular with American school children:

        Roses are red,
        Violets are blue,
        Some poems rhyme,
        Some don't.

If you do an HTTP GET to that URI I send you back an HTML page.  The text 
of the poem is more or less centered.  It's set out in some font of my 
choosing, in 25 point italic.  The background is purple.  I don't think 
the most appropriate way to describe that in English is to say that it's 
my impression of the poem.  It's the way I choose to render the poem for 
your perusal.  In fact, it's quite appropriate to say that the HTML page 
is the way that I choose to represent the program. 

Furthermore, I don't think we need to insist that this particular URI is 
only for the poem rendered in those fonts, unless that's what I say the 
URI is for.  If I say that it's for the poem, and in a year or so someone 
comes up with a font I like better, I see no problem with my changing the 
page to use that.  The URI still identifies the poem, since I say it does 
(presuming I've registered  The HTML pages are still 
representations of the poem, they are not my impressions of it.

FWIW:  my impression of the poem is that it's moderately funny.

> - Your *impression* about the city is NOT the *city*. 

Right.  If I offered

then its representation might be:

        Roses are red,
        Violets are blue,
        Some poems rhyme,
        Some don't.
        is funny!


Noah Mendelsohn 
IBM Corporation
One Rogers Street
Cambridge, MA 02142

Received on Tuesday, 23 October 2007 21:31:38 UTC