Best Practice for URI construction?
A URI is used to "identify" a resource:
A Uniform Resource Identifier (URI) is a compact sequence of characters that identifies an abstract or physical resource.
I would like to bound the following discussion by considering just URLs that use the http scheme.
As I see it, there are two main approaches to constructing a URL to identify a resource:
Approach 1. URL Construction using Parent/Child Relationships
Here's an example of a URL that uses this approach:
After the [host] (http://www.location.org) there are a series of slash-delimited names. The name to the left of a slash is the parent. The name to the right of a slash is the child.
Approach 2. URL Construction using Key-Value Pairs plus Conjunction
This second approach is exemplified with this URL:
After the [host] there is the query string delimiter (?) followed by one or more key=value pairs ANDed together.
Hybrids of the above two approaches are also possible. For example:
(1) The above URLs (I believe) are expressing the same thing - they are identifying the same resource. So which is "better"?
(2) As was noted at the top, the purpose of a URL is to "identify" a resource. Can every resource in the universe be identified using the above two approaches? Are there resources that do not lend themselves to identification using the above two approaches?
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