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I have some assumptions about the web I'd like to test here;
below is a list.
- There is a subspace, addresses.
- There is a subspace of addresses, URI.
- There is a subspace of URI, URN, that are names.
- There is a subspace of URI, URL, that are locations;
but without any formal specification
- A resource is an entity.
- A representation is an entity.
- A URI may identify resources that are also
- A subspace is about a lesser set of entities than
- A space is about a set of resources, for example
"tel:" is about phone numbers and "http:" is about
- URIs are data; the URI space is a data structure,
a lexical space; a URI is an instance of the data
- A space is an informal social contract that makes
the author in particular and users in general aware
about the intended semanrtics; it is the informal
complement of a deferred type.
- A resource is an informal social contract that
makes the author in particular and users in
general aware about the intended semantics;
it is the informal complement of a final type;
final because addresses are not spaces.
- A address may itself be a space, e.g. "urn:isbn".
- Either a system must respect these intentions or
it must disregard the resource concept; either
it sees URIs as spaces and datastructures or it
sees them as strings that are suitable as (global)
keys in maps like the DNS but their exact nature
is irrelevant to the system and it only needs them
- Camp A wants to see URIs as strings that have the
meaning of whatever the author wants them to have.
They do not approve that URLs are locations and
use them to identify anything.
- Camp B wants to see URIs as data and data structures
and see URI spaces as having informal semantics that
should be respected by systems; that's why they want
to use URN because with URN you can define name spaces
that have your intended semantics.
- Camp C doesn't care about either or doesn't see the
- Camp D (?) has a more nuanced view than either of these.
Perhaps the central question would be:
- "Does the URI 'http://www.w3.org' identify an
organisation called W3C or a location on the Web?"
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