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   RE: [xml-dev] Re: Why REST? (RE: [xml-dev] WSIO- With Name)

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> From: Paul Prescod [mailto:paul@prescod.net] 
> Ignoring topic maps and RDFs ... we can assert that the URI 
> identifies YOU and that links to the URI are links to YOU. We 
> can also say that you may have whatever representation there 
> you think is a sufficient representation of you, including a 
> 404 page. Where do you think that there is a problem with this view.

You can assert what you like as long as you don't expect your systems to
be internally consistent. A great advance of modern philosophy has been
the delineation of things from the names of things. This separation has
removed no end of scholastic nonsense and confusion from the subject.
But please don't think that pointing at things and uttering names is
then enough to remove ambiguity.

The semantics of a URI are derived from the way it is used in a
computer, not what someone declares it points at, or inherent the label
itself, or some other ostensive definition. Otherwise I should be able
to say things like, "I use wget to download the meaning of so and so
URI", or "I used PUT to change the meaning of so and so URI". URIs are a
house of cards in this respect.

Bill de hÓra


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