Purl.org provides info about the Persistent Uniform Resource Locator
Persistent URL Home Page
A PURL is a Persistent Uniform Resource Locator. Functionally, a PURL is a URL. However, instead of pointing directly to the location of an Internet resource, a PURL points to an intermediate resolution service. The PURL resolution service associates the PURL with the actual URL and returns that URL to the client. The client can then complete the URL transaction in the normal fashion. In Web parlance, this is a standard HTTP redirect.
The OCLC PURL Service has been strongly influenced by the active participation of OCLC's Office of Research in the Internet Engineering Task Force Uniform Resource Identifier working groups. There is nothing incompatible between PURLs and the ongoing URN (Uniform Resource Name) work. PURLs satisfy many of the requirements of URNs using currently deployed technologies and can be transitioned smoothly into a URN architecture once it is deployed.
This PURL Server will be moving shortly to a new platform. At that time the ability to Register, Create, or Modify functions on this Server will be disabled. This notice will change when that function is disabled.
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