[wg-review] Outreach and Education
FYI, forwarded from the GA ML for the benefit of those who are not
on 4/12/01 9:06 AM, David G. Post at Postd@erols.com wrote:
> I think Roeland is right on target. The DNS is a kind of language --
> it gives names to things. Coordination is very valuable in a language
> -- if Roeland calls a round spherical object a 'ball,' and I call it a
> 'goidosphere,' we're going to have trouble understanding one
> another. But we need imposed coordination of the ICANN variety about
> as much as we need a Bureau of Definitions to tell us what words
> mean. We had this fight 200 years ago; really smart and sensible
> people actually argued that we needed things like the Academie
> Francaise to 'authorize' particular labels for things, lest chaos
> ensue. That argument lost,
> decisively. See http://www.temple.edu/lawschool/dpost/DrakeTalk.pdf
> Somehow we manage to agree to call it a 'ball', or not, quite
> effectively without any single institution telling us we have to do that.
> David G. Post Temple University Law School and The Tech Center,
> George Mason Univ. Law School
> 215-204-4539 or 202-364-5010
> At 12:00 PM 4/11/01 -0700, Roeland Meyer wrote:
>> There is a serious disconnect here. When dealing with finite physical
>> resources, these distinctions make sense. OTOH, when dealing with abstract
>> resources these distinctions make absolutely no sense. I am sorry to see
>> that some have managed to rat-hole the discussion into "argument by
>> analogy". There are no definitive analogies that matter. We need to grasp
>> the concepts directly and deal with them ... directly.
>> The facts are that names are simply labels. I may label a spherical rubber
>> object a "ball" and you may label a square steel cube a "ball". Both are
>> equally valid within their context. A third-party would have to deal with
>> each of us, within our own context, and use the labels appropriately, when
>> discussing those things within the given context.
>> The fundimental problem here is that labels are not resources at all. They
>> are a meta-object, a means for organizing a universe of entities such that
>> we can distinguish one from another. They are a reusable tag. We can change
>> the object that we place the label on. We can also place the label on
>> another object ... at the same time. The problem here is that the contexts
>> that the labels are valid within ... can also be labeled, which is valid
>> within a meta-context. This is a recursive phenomenon. I submit that, the
>> only other place we have this problem is in object-oriented design and
>> analysis (OOD and OOA). Analogies don't work, for defining the problem,
>> there either. Further, OOD and OOA technologies weren't available when the
>> DNS system was designed.
>> This is the fundimental theoretical problem that the original designers of
>> the DNS system ran into. Thair answer was that, they drew the line in the
>> sand, at the root-zone level, and said "we'll stop here, for now". The line,
>> while occuring at a natural demarcation point, is still arbitrary. This
>> reduced the problem to managable proportions, such that they could build the
>> initial DNS system (the decendent of which is ISC BIND 8.2.3).
>> What we have here, as a direct result, is a system which is, intentionally,
>> context-limited. However, for labeling hosts on the Terabit project, it
>> worked. The problems we are dealing with today are a direct resultant of
>> applying the DNS system, out of its contextual referent, to problems that
>> really have their own context rules. Refering to my previous example, my
>> definition of "ball" differs from yours and unless we make an effort to
>> define the context of "ball" we will never understand each other. In the DNS
>> context, the label "ball" is a name space collision unless the relevant
>> context is defined. The key is that, understanding the context matters and
>> we'll never resolve this until we start dealing with context and
>> acknowleging that there are other contexts.
>> The practical application is that;
>> ICANN cannot ignore the contextual referents of the other root-zone
>> Trademark and IP interests cannot apply thier restrictions without also
>> understanding the contextual references.
>> The software needs to apply to a larger contextual scope than it has ever
>> had to heretofore (the MultiBIND project has been announced).
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