Re: Draft for Review: Namespaces II, postmodernism

Gregory Alan Bolcer (
Mon, 25 Oct 1999 10:59:54 -0700

Rohit Khare wrote:

> Why We Name
> Perhaps it makes more sense in reverse: why do we name objects in the first
> place? We use names to abstract away details: of location, of authorization, of
> human-readability. Every namespace interposes a new fulcrum for administrative
> leverage: to redirect the binding, extract rents, and implement other social
> policies.

I am not sure I agree with the first part of this. We give things names as
a discrimination function, we only give names to ones that we want to distinguish.
That's not abstraction. Think of the 6B people on the planet, they are all the
same to you except for the ones you know by name. When you meet someone new, the
first thing you do is exchange names so you can start discriminating between
then and the other 5.9B that you don't know. So, it's the namespace that creates
the abstraction and the names that make the fulcrum.