This Post Is Ambiguous

When was the last time you had an unambiguous discussion?

In which Roy Fielding asks why the Semantic Web has a requirement that URIs identify a resource unambiguously?

I believe the whole attempt to make a distinction between a "document" and a "non-information resource" is just way too complicated for most users. All this business of redirecting the client from the non-information resource to a document that describes the resource seems like a hack. I understand the problem (does the URI refer to the Thing or the Document About The Thing?) and it's complicated. Take the link I used to point you, the loyal reader, to more information about Roy Fielding. I used which is some home page for Roy. Is that link pointing to The Man or The Home Page?

My answer? Both. And the semantic web needs to deal with that unambiguity. As far as I can tell, it can. Since anyone can publish metadata about anything on the web, there's nothing un-web about saying that " is a Home Page" and also " is a representation for Roy Fielding" It's all about context.

Human deal with this all the time. Take, for example, my name. You can look at "Seth Ladd" as either a string of characters, which form words that have some meaning, or you can look at "Seth Ladd" as an identifier for The Man. Humans are good at noticing when "Seth Ladd" means The Man or The String of Characters. The semantic web will need to deal with this very same ambiguity.

Popular posts from this blog