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

Re: A little courtesy, please

From: Simon St.Laurent <simonstl@simonstl.com>
Date: Tue, 23 May 2000 08:06:05 -0400
Message-Id: <200005231204.IAA20630@hesketh.net>
To: Dan Connolly <connolly@w3.org>, Tim Bray <tbray@textuality.com>
Cc: xml-uri@w3.org
At 03:05 AM 5/23/00 -0500, Dan Connolly wrote:
>> [* re RDF] - the notion that sticking to what the namespace rec says
>> tends to destroy RDF is just totally 100% incontrovertably vacuous.
>> RDF has chosen to say that when you're in RDF space, namespace names
>> have to be used in a particular way.  Some of us may have trouble with
>> the syntax engineering (#, feh) and some of us may worry that the RDF
>> way doesn't provide enough indirection, but nothing they do contravenes
>> the namespace spec in spirit or in letter.
>
>I largely agree with this, but I cannot agree that treating relative
>URI references as namespace names without absolutizing them is in
>the spirit of RDF.

This is, at least in theory, a discussion of allowable XML syntax, not RDF.
I've seen no evidence that RDF processors are incapable of handling
absolutizing within their own layer of processing.

> Either namespaces are web resources in every sense of the word,
> and hence any sort of URI reference the author chooses
> may be used to point to them, or not.

You're overstating your case here.  Namespaces use URIs as names, and
nothing more, at least at the XML level, as described in the Namespaces in
XML spec.  

URIs are not Platonic Forms, with austere and unchanging nature - they're
useful tools treated differently in a variety of contexts.

>And if not, the design
>of XML namespaces doesn't agree with web architecture, which
>is that important things should be treated as web resources
>with all the rights and obligations thereof.

At which point my earlier (unanswered) concerns about whether 'Web
architecture' and the 'Semantic Web' are actually a liability for XML come
into play, and the courtesy level likely drops another few notches.

This isn't a discussion of religion or morals, or at least didn't claim to
be.  

While I'm glad to have been able to participate in the discussion, I'm
really left wondering why this issue moved onto a public list when the 'Web
architecture' that appears to be motivating it is under wraps, apparently
unquestionable.

Simon St.Laurent
XML Elements of Style / XML: A Primer, 2nd Ed.
Building XML Applications
Inside XML DTDs: Scientific and Technical
Cookies / Sharing Bandwidth
http://www.simonstl.com
Received on Tuesday, 23 May 2000 08:04:26 UTC

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