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RE: What is at the end of the namespace?

From: <Patrick.Stickler@nokia.com>
Date: Thu, 15 Nov 2001 13:37:21 +0200
Message-ID: <2BF0AD29BC31FE46B7887732114404316217C7@trebe003.NOE.Nokia.com>
To: sean@mysterylights.com
Cc: www-talk@w3.org, uri@w3.org

> -----Original Message-----
> From: ext Sean B. Palmer [mailto:sean@mysterylights.com]
> Sent: 15 November, 2001 01:44
> To: Stickler Patrick (NRC/Tampere)
> Cc: www-talk@w3.org; uri@w3.org
> Subject: Re: What is at the end of the namespace?
> Hi Patrick,
> > > What more do you want?
> >
> > Well, for one, the realization that URI != HTTP URL.
> >
> > Are you really going to tell me that because a *URI*  doesn't
> > have to resolve to something that a *HTTP URL* doesn't?
> If you'll take the time to read my mail again carefully, you'll find
> that I was simply establishing a ground fact about URIs, that in
> general they can denote anything which may be identified, and then
> asking you to point out where - in any specification - it says once
> and for all that HTTP URIs cannot identify "abstract concepts". Since
> I have asked and you have not provided (indeed - your "weanie" point
> notwithstanding - you cannot), I am not inclined to believe that HTTP
> URIs cannot identify abstract concepts.

The problem with your argument is that you are trying to
complete, literal definition of a URI to HTTP URLs. Just
because the URI spec doesn't say it's so for URIs, that 
doesn't mean it isn't so for *specific* URI schemes.

Yes, URIs *may* denote abstract resources. No, HTTP URLs may *not*.

The fact that HTTP URLs may not is not defined by the URI spec. How
could it? That fact is defined (or rather, strongly implied and
evident by common sense) in definition of the HTTP URL scheme.

Your argument is like this:

Assertion 1: Mammals may have either no legs, two legs or four legs.
Assertion 2: Dogs may have either no legs, two legs or four legs, because
             mammals may have either no legs, two legs or four legs.

and totally misses the fact that

Assertion 3: Dogs have four legs.

Thus, a URI may denote an abstract or concrete resource.
But an HTTP URL denotes a concrete (web retrievable) resource.
And of course, since a URI may denote a concrete resource,
an HTTP URL complies with that general characteristic of
URIs in general.

You really should re-think the logic of your argument.

> > You're in URL denial, Sean ;-)
> If anyone is in denial here, it is surely you; whatever you say,
> Patrick, you can't change the way things are, and when they work just
> fine, I don't see why you would want to. Your arguments have always
> come across as contentious to me.
> People *are* using HTTP URLs to identify abstract concepts. People are
> using URI references with absolute HTTP URIs as bases as such; the W3C
> is using them as such, everyone in their right minds is using them.

They are using them, because that's *all* there is to use.

Show me one, single, solitary URI scheme provided or promoted by
either the IETF or W3C for denoting abstract concepts *only*.

There are none. Folks need to get work done. They use what is 

I need to eat. I cook on my car engine. But when I can get to
a stove, that's much better...

Received on Thursday, 15 November 2001 06:37:40 UTC

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