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Definition of the URI Strategy

To meet high quality standards for managing business data, a company must define a persistent data representation policy for identifying each data item from the enterprise data universe. Such a policy must include the addressing schemes for locating data resources within the enterprise space. An uri[1] is a relevant mechanism for defining a global representation scheme of the enterprise business data space.

Identification of Business Items as Resources Referenced by URIs

The first recommendation in building a coherent and persistent representation policy is to identify business data items as resources, which can be individually referenced. To conform to the LOD principles, uris should be used as the identification mechanism for referencing the business information resources.

Use HTTP/DNS Based URIs

A uri is a mechanism that can be used for identifying different objects and concepts. Some of these objects and concepts may have a physical existence like books for example with ISBN, web page with URL locations. Other concepts are abstract and represent conceptual things like ontology concepts or data items. Different schemes of uris exist for representing a resource: uris based on dns (Domain Name Server) names, ark (Archival Resource Key) and uris based on names and ids like isbn (International Standard Book Number), doi (Digital Object Identifiers), Barcodes, etc. Some of the schemes described above can be inadequate to implement basic Linked Open Data features like publishing, referencing and interlinking. Therefore, it is strongly recommended to use uris based on http protocol and dns names (like urls and ark) to ensure visibility, accessibility and reuse of business items in external applications and to third party users.

Use De-referenceable URIs

Human users associate mechanically http based uris to urls and expect to have a web page when pasting a uri into a browser address bar. Unfortunately, the association of a uri to a web page is not always true and automatic. For some businesses, such a situation may generate confusion and frustration. To avoid such misunderstanding, it is highly recommended to provide means to have “dereferenceable” and resolvable uris, i.e. uris that return meaningful responses when pasted into a browser's address bar. A typical meaningful response could be an html page containing a complete or partial description, including the properties of the corresponding resource.

  • [1] Uniform Resource Identifier: RFC3986 tools.ietf.org/html/rfc3986
 
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