Public Identifiers

Jerome McDonough jmcdonou at
Wed Sep 23 00:09:30 BST 1998

At 01:39 PM 9/22/98 -0500, Steven R. Newcomb wrote:
>> The URN working group of the IETF is working on an Internet Draft
>> addressing the issue of how name assignment authorities are registered
>> (or not).  Quoting from the draft: "In a nutshell, a template for
>> the definition of the namespace is completed for deposit with IANA,
>> and a NID (namespace identifier) is assigned."  The draft contemplates 
>> three levels of name spaces: experimental, informal, and formal.
>> Experimental are not explicitly registered with IANA, and take
>> the form of x-<NID>; no provision is made for avoiding collision
>> of experimental NIDs.
>Do you think I would be correct in assuming that I could use the
>above-described x-<NID> form to assign the "1922 Sears Farm Catalog"
>to a namespace I invent that I could call, in effect, "Sears, Roebuck
>& Co."?

Yup.  So, something like:


is perfectly legitimate.  There are limitations on what characters
you're allowed to use in <NID>s (see RFC 2141); only a-z, A-Z, 0-9, and
the dash character.  So, no white spaces, ampersands, punctuation, etc.
But within those restraints, you're pretty much free to do whatever
you want with experimental URNs.

Jerome McDonough -- jmcdonou at library.Berkeley.EDU  |  (......)
Library Systems Office, 386 Doe, U.C. Berkeley     |  \ *  * /
Berkeley, CA 94720-6000    (510) 643-2058          |  \  <>  /
"Well, it looks easy enough...."                   |   \ -- /  SGNORMPF!!!
         -- From the Famous Last Words file        |    ||||

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