Currently, when a file is moved into References, it acquires the description “URL”. Since column three is titled “URL,” that seems a might redundant. How about if the filename (sans extension maybe?) were used for the description instead? Would this be possible?
But you can just rename it whatever you want it to be. Do you mean you’d like the default name to be something else? I generally just rename my reference descriptions anyway, since I want it to be more specific, more, well, descriptive. But perhaps others don’t want to mess with renaming, so the file name could be helpful. Of course, I think part of it is that when I download things from the internet, they often have unhelpful file names so I have to change them anyway!
This seems like a good idea until you remember that a URL isn’t necessarily a file. I just tried it and soon remembered why I didn’t do this in the first place. The URL could be a website, in which case you can not obtain anything like a file name from it - if you use the same methods, you just end up with it being called “/”, which is even worse. To my knowledge, there is no way of telling whether a URL is a website or a file or whatever until you actually try to get OS X to launch it; and there is no standard way of getting the name of a website from a URL anyway. So, it seems sensible to leave the naming of this field up to the user.
Maybe I am missing something, but couldn’t Scrivener divine the location of the URI, and act appropriately based on whether or not it starts with file:// or http://? You are right about the web based bit, I think it should stay the way it is for that.