Meaningful URLs

It's often difficult to convince someone that meaningful URLs are important. "No one will be typing it anyway. They'll just be clicking on a link." is a common response to suggestions that http://somewebsite.com/avenue/pennsylvania/number/1600/ is a better address than http://somewebsite.com/?id=21376

Today I was looking at some PHP code snippets at http://www.bigbold.com/snippets/tag/php and I decided to subscribe to the feed. So I clicked on the feed button (because there are no autodiscovery tags), and was taken to http://www.bigbold.com/snippets/rss/tags, which isn't an actual feed. The link is broken. (I already sent an email.) I noticed that the URL doesn't describe the content of the feed I was looking for.

So I typed in what I thought would be a descriptive URL for a feed of items tagged with 'php': http://www.bigbold.com/snippets/rss/tag/php. And sure enough, that's where the feed was. In a world full of perfect people and perfect markup with no links to the wrong URLs, meaningful URLs don't matter as much. In the real world, they can make the difference between someone using your website and not.

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