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Dare Obasanjo wrote:
> I know this may sound like a chicken and egg question but is the reason
> expect something to be at the URI because most examples of namespace usage
> the W3C and others involve HTTP URLs?
Not to delve into the details of URIs vs. URLs and hypertext theory in too
much of its gory detail, but RFC 2396 defines URIs and melds what had been
known as URNs (resource names) and URLs (resource locators) into the single
concept of a URI (resource identifier). This is described as the "Web
architecture" and if can read TimBLs writings on this, or Roy Fielding's if
you want to know why HTTP URIs are intended to serve as URIs not 'merely'
URL. On the flip side of this coin, there are mechanisms to resolve URIs
that use the "urn:" schema (formerly known as URNs), so the distinction is
not so clear as you might presume.
>In my opinion, there are many things
> that are associated with a namespace URI that are relevant to human
> mechanical tools and the usage of HTTP URLs blurs this significantly.
RDDL demonstrates that a "http" URI can be used precisely for both human
reading as well as the machine location of an appropriate resource, so if
such a distinction is blurred, it is of no consequence.
My personal belief is that the semantic web will not arise from an entirely
new infrastructure, rather as an extension of the current web. I am
perfectly happy for a machine to be able to precisely read an LLBean catalog
and submit a transaction without my intervention e.g. if my computer decides
to buy me a birthday present.
Indeed rather than maintaining the machine/human distinction, I would like
to promote a web where humans can browse, and yet machines can get precise
information and direct precise actions ***. Isn't that how we want the web
*** a particular example: healthcare documentation is _legally required_ to
be readable by people. I would like it _also_ to be readable by computers so
that we can make inferences and detect patterns automatically rather than
through the current, exaustive and imprecise fashion. In order to do this we
need formats that are readable by both humans and machines. RDDL is an
example of such a format. You will be seeing more regarding this in the
future, so hold this thought.