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Re: Some TAG review of "Cool URIs for the Semantic Web"

From: John Cowan <cowan@ccil.org>
Date: Thu, 20 Sep 2007 12:39:10 -0400
To: Pat Hayes <phayes@ihmc.us>
Cc: Tim Berners-Lee <timbl@w3.org>, Technical Architecture Group WG <www-tag@w3.org>, Susie Stephens <susie.stephens@gmail.com>
Message-ID: <20070920163910.GL26549@mercury.ccil.org>

Pat Hayes scripsit:

> In addition, that final sentence really is ridiculous. "We call all 
> these things resources."  All WHAT things? It sounds rather as though 
> you are saying 'We call everything resources.' If that really is what 
> you mean, I suggest it would be extremely helpful if you would 
> actually say this, directly. (If it sounds ridiculous; well, I rest 
> my case.) I would note that there are already many humble words that 
> can be used for this purpose, such as 'thing' and 'entity'.  

In the Topic Maps tradition, the equivalent term is "subject" (topic
maps are a generalization of the subject indexes at the back of books),
and it is defined thus:

	A subject is anything that can be spoken about or conceived
	of by a human being. In the most generic sense, a subject is
	anything whatsoever, regardless of whether it exists or has any
	other specific characteristics, about which anything whatsoever
	may be asserted by any means whatsoever. In particular, it is
	anything on which the author of a topic map chooses to discourse.

I think that, with the parochialisms removed, that sentence does very
well as the definition of "resource" as well.

Newbies always ask:                             John Cowan
  "Elements or attributes?                      http://www.ccil.org/~cowan
Which will serve me best?"                      cowan@ccil.org
  Those who know roar like lions;
  Wise hackers smile like tigers.                   --a tanka, or extended haiku
Received on Thursday, 20 September 2007 16:39:22 UTC

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