Re: [DNSOP] I-D Action: draft-ietf-dnsop-terminology-bis-05.txt

Andrew McConachie <> Sat, 08 April 2017 13:23 UTC

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To: Paul Hoffman <>,
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From: Andrew McConachie <>
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Date: Sat, 08 Apr 2017 15:23:50 +0200
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Subject: Re: [DNSOP] I-D Action: draft-ietf-dnsop-terminology-bis-05.txt
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On 4/7/17 20:39, Paul Hoffman wrote:
> (I'm surprised our philosophy-minded folks didn't answer this. I'll 
> take a stab, acknowledging that I'm only a philosophy tourist.)
> On 30 Mar 2017, at 13:41, Andrew McConachie wrote:
>> If a domain name is made up of labels, and labels are made up of 
>> octets, then can there be non-digital representations of domain names?
> Yes. The octets in the labels can be encoded into writing systems, and 
> there can be a commonly-recognized display format for the 
> representation of a group of labels.
>> For example, if I spray paint 'www.example' on the side of a bus, is 
>> it not a domain name because it is made up of paint instead of octets?
> It is a rendering (in paint, on a bus) a domain name in a 
> commonly-accepted display format. Neither the paint nor the bus is the 
> domain name.
> Some history related to representation versus essence: 
/Ceci n'est pas une pipe./

If I understand correctly this definition of domain name incorporates 
actual pipes and explicitly not paintings of pipes. Since the draft says 
a domain name is essentially octets, and only octets, any representation 
of domain names not composed of octets is just a representation, not an 
actual domain name.

I don't believe that's how the term is used in common parlance, but I 
can see how that definition works for this document. Thanks for the