g1smd - 10:55 pm on Nov 5, 2012 (gmt 0)
#4516013 is music to my ears. You "get it". Your interpretation of my comments about "making" URLs and processing of ".html" requests, etc, is spot on.
Extensionless URLs have to be the way to go. I'd be tempted to build a custom PHP module that redirects requests for old style URLs to new extensionles URLs, especially where the new URLs have a path that begins with a unique ID number before the slug text. The site can then operate in a much more efficient way, especially if the standard junk WP htaccess code is replaced with something more usable.
I also find discussion of "real location" and "pretending" to be confusing and a bit unhelpful. Jim had a simple boiler plate text which he, and I, repeated often.
It went along the lines of... "URLs" exist "out there" on the web. "Here" inside the server there's just "paths" and "files". The two are not at all the same thing. They are merely "related" by the action of the server software. htaccess cannot "make" a URL. URLs are made in the href="" part of the links on your pages. htaccess does its thing only after that link has been clicked and a request sent to the server. The server can respond with a redirect telling the browser to make a new request for a different URL. Alternatively, content can be fetched from a non-default location inside the server, one that is different to that suggested by the path part of the initial external URL request, and this action is commonly known as an internal rewrite.
It is vital that you have a clear idea about the differences between URLs "out there" on the web and files and paths "here" inside the server and the differences between external redirects and internal rewrites. The confusing thing is that both actions can be configured with a RewriteRule with only minor syntax differences between the two.