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RE: HTTP Endpoints and Resources

From: Booth, David (HP Software - Boston) <dbooth@hp.com>
Date: Wed, 26 Sep 2007 11:44:43 -0400
Message-ID: <EBBD956B8A9002479B0C9CE9FE14A6C203387CF4@tayexc19.americas.cpqcorp.net>
To: "Rhys Lewis" <rhys@volantis.com>, "Pat Hayes" <phayes@ihmc.us>
Cc: "Technical Architecture Group WG" <www-tag@w3.org>


I like your recognition that 200 and 303 URIs have something in common,
but please don't refer to the 303 case has having an "http endpoint"
that "responds", because doing so would introduce the unnecessary
confusion of having the same URI denote two different things: an "http
endpoint" and the thing the URI was intended to denote -- a person, for

What the 200 and 303 cases have in common is that the server's response
indicates that the URI owner has associated the URI with a resource,
i.e., the URI owner has "minted" or "allocated" the URI.  (Slight
digression: hence the server's response can be viewed as "declaring"[3]
that URI.)  But in both cases it is the *server* that sends back the
response -- not the URI.  When the response is 200 we may colloquially
speak of "the URI responding", and this sloppiness in language is
harmless in that case because the URI denotes the resource that is
(conceptually) "responding".  But when the URI denotes a person, and the
response is 303, it is *not* the person that is conceptually responding.
Hence, the sloppiness of talking about "the URI responding" becomes
quite misleading. 

3. URI declarations: http://dbooth.org/2007/uri-decl/

David Booth, Ph.D.
HP Software
+1 617 629 8881 office  |  dbooth@hp.com

Opinions expressed herein are those of the author and do not represent
the official views of HP unless explicitly stated otherwise.
Received on Wednesday, 26 September 2007 15:46:22 UTC

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