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Re: What is at the end of the namespace?

From: Sean B. Palmer <sean@mysterylights.com>
Date: Wed, 14 Nov 2001 16:41:40 -0000
Message-ID: <01b401c16d2c$220499c0$bbdd93c3@localhost>
To: <Patrick.Stickler@nokia.com>
Cc: <www-talk@w3.org>, <uri@w3.org>
> How about a response such as "Retrieve *that*?, are you
> out of your mind?!" such as an HTTP URL for the abstract
> concept of 'INSANE'.

Sure, why not? "The server tried to send a representation of this
resource, but couldn't find one".

> I.e., those responses are based on the *expectation* that
> the resource is a web resource that is *retrievable* [...]

Well, HTTP is a protocol for sending stuff by wire, so of course they
are oriented that way.

> > HTTP URIs denote a resource. The nature of the discussion
> > that we're having is whther or not they necessarily identify
> > some subset of resources, and where this is defined.
> No, HTTP URIs denote *web* resources. There's a
> difference ;-)

Not if your definition of "resources" == "Web resources". The
definition I use for Web resources and resources alike is:-

         A resource can be anything that has identity.
]]] - RFC 2396

Courtesy of the URI RFC. It further states:-

         Not all resources are network "retrievable"; e.g., human
         beings, corporations, and bound books in a library can
         also be considered resources.
]]] - ibid.

I'm not sure how it could be any clearer. Oh, hang on:-

         The resource is the conceptual mapping to an entity or set of
         entities, not necessarily the entity which corresponds to
         mapping at any particular instance in time.
]]] - ibid.

What more do you want? Now, until you can find a piece of writing that
states "HTTP is bound only to a set of things that can be explicitly
sent back", then I'm going to take it that HTTP URIs can identify any
resource, and that the thing that you get back over the wire is just a
representation of that resource.

> The biggest problem with using HTTP URIs for abstract
> concepts or for indirect idenifiers (e.g. URNs) [...]

Ugh, why on Earth do you keep saying that? How are URNs "indirect
identifiers"? Nobody ever said that. They are bound to their resources
in exactly the same manner as every other URI. There's nothing special
about URNs excapt in the way that the authority to create the binding
is delegated.

> [...] "People" get gonzo confused when some HTTP daemon
> doesn't resolve it to "something".

So what? People get confused over Relativity and Quantum Physics as
well (time can bend? light is a packet and a wave?), but it doesn't
mean that these theories are wrong.

Kindest Regards,
Sean B. Palmer
@prefix : <http://webns.net/roughterms/> .
:Sean :hasHomepage <http://purl.org/net/sbp/> .
Received on Wednesday, 14 November 2001 11:48:11 UTC

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