[foaf-dev] foaf phone and tel URLs

Story Henry henry.story at bblfish.net
Wed Jan 30 19:57:13 GMT 2008

On 30 Jan 2008, at 19:35, Peter Williams wrote:
> 		Although many URI schemes are named after protocols, this does not  
> imply that use of these URIs will result in access to the resource  
> via the named protocol. URIs are often used simply for the sake of  
> identification. Even when a URI is used to retrieve a representation  
> of a resource, that access might be through gateways, proxies,  
> caches, and name resolution services that are independent of the  
> protocol associated with the scheme name. The resolution of some  
> URIs may require the use of more than one protocol (e.g., both DNS  
> and HTTP are typically used to access an "http" URI's origin server  
> when a representation isn't found in a local cache).
> 		http://gbiv.com/protocols/uri/rfc/rfc3986.html#identification
> That a resolvable tel: is dependent on a SS7 nameserver or an ENUM  
> nameservice (and then their feature/sub-service naming/addressing  
> properties) seems consistent with W3C doctrine, no?

Put that way it makes more sense.

Still, this tel URI is pretty complex.
This is what got me worried:

  This URL places a voice call to the given number. The number format  
is intended for local use: the first zero opens an outside line, the  
"w" character waits for a second dial tone, and the number already has  
the international access code appended to it ("00"). This kind of  
phone number MUST NOT be used in an environment where all users of  
this URL might not be able to successfully dial out by using this  
number directly. However, this might be appropriate for pages in a  
company intranet. The <area-specifier> which is present hints that the  
number is usable only in an environment where the local entity's phone  
number starts with the given string (perhaps singling out a company- 
wide block of telephone numbers).
The URL describes a phone number which, even if it is written in its  
international form, is only usable within the numbering area where  
phone numbers start with +1234. There is also a proprietary extension  
"vnd.company.option", which has the value "foo". The meaning of this  
extension is application-specific. Note that the order of these  
parameters (phone-context and vnd.company.option) is irrelevant.

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