site text search

Dominic Mitchell dom at
Thu Feb 9 15:58:51 GMT 2006

On Thu, Feb 09, 2006 at 12:04:02PM +0000, Andy Wardley wrote:
> Dominic Mitchell wrote:
> > Then you've got a broken web site -- period.  Content should have only
> > one, canonical URL.
> Not so.  Remember that a URL is a Universal Resource Locator.  It simply 
> says that there is a resource that can be fetched from this location.  It
> doesn't say that this is the only location for the resource, or that the
> resource will be there tomorrow or the day after.
> For example, both these URLs point to the same resource:
> Both are correct, both are equally valid.
> Homotopic paths (different paths that get you to the same place) are 
> a fundamental part of any hyperspace such as the web, and a good thing too.  
> There is no strict hierarchy, there is no "One True Location".  That's 
> why it's a web and not an index.
> On the other hand, every resource should ideally have one, canonical URI.
> A Universal Resource Identifier does not say anything about the location
> of the resource, but simply gives it an identifier so that it can be 
> uniquely referenced now and for the rest of time.  You may not be able
> to fetch the resource, now or ever, but at least you'll be able to talk 
> about it.
> I suspect this is what you're really getting at.  The URL/URI confusion
> is a common one, made all the more perplexing by the fact that URLs are
> written using the URI "syntax".  Thus in common parlance, URL and URI are
> interchangeable but actually relate to slightly different concepts.

Spot on.  Guess I've been listening to too many semantic web people
recently.  :-)


More information about the mailing list