W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > xml-uri@w3.org > May 2000

RE: Use cases

From: David G. Durand <david@dynamicdiagrams.com>
Date: Wed, 17 May 2000 17:07:17 -0400
Message-Id: <a04310105b548aa46fa85@[]>
To: <xml-uri@w3.org>
At 1:51 PM -0400 5/17/00, David E. Cleary wrote:
>  > Except that this is not exactly the situation, as I have heard it
>>  explained by other Microsoft representatives. The _meaning_ of
>>  relative URLs as  used by Microsoft software is based on absolutizing
>>  the relative URL with respect to the document base and using it to
>>  retrieve a resource. The comparison semantics defined by the
>>  namespaces spec. are in fact ignored by this software. The namespaces
>>  specification defines the matching of namespace URIs for identity,
>>  and does not mandate or endorse any resolution strategy.
>This is in contradiction to the detailed message a Microsoft representative
>posted in the previous discussion within the W3C. Absolution is done only in
>those cases of retrieval, not in comparison.

This may be so. I was part of the internal W3C discussion, and I must 
say that Microsoft representatives made a variety of claims and 
espoused a variety of positions as to the best solutions. I'm happy 
to hear that I may be wrong, but I think we now must wait for an 
official description, should one come along. None of the discussions 
that I saw implied that the software in question ever _does_ compare 
namespaces for identity, as the software did not need that facility. 
If there's no operational effect that results from such comparisons, 
I don't actually care if they are calculated or not.

If comparison is implemented in that way, and actually has an 
operational effect, then that means that good practice when using 
that software will include the avoidance of relative URLs as they 
will have different effects under comparison and retrieval.

Personally, I support making relative URIs for namespaces explicitly 
deprecated now, and illegal in the next rev.

I don't think the Microsoft, or any other vendor, would actually 
hesitate a microsecond before changing a data format (and requiring a 
software upgrade) if it involved potential income rather than the 
creation of a clean design.

That said, I believe that the W3C-internal decision to preserve 
literal comparison, and note the flaws in the use of relative URIs is 
an adequate compromise. I am actually rather disturbed that we are 
rehashing an old, acrimonious, and repetitive debate, on which a 
decision has already been reached.

   -- David
David Durand              dgd@cs.bu.edu  \  david@dynamicDiagrams.com
http://cs-people.bu.edu//dgd/             \  Chief Technical Officer
     Graduate Student no more!              \  Dynamic Diagrams
--------------------------------------------\  http://www.dynamicDiagrams.com/
Received on Wednesday, 17 May 2000 17:11:41 UTC

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