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Re: Introducing the W3C HTML/XML Task Force

From: Benjamin Hawkes-Lewis <bhawkeslewis@googlemail.com>
Date: Wed, 29 Dec 2010 08:05:08 +0000
Message-ID: <AANLkTi=E_e3oPy5PvtUrP6vnry5TFWLRV0Sm7qaJz5o4@mail.gmail.com>
To: John Foliot <jfoliot@stanford.edu>
Cc: "Tab Atkins Jr." <jackalmage@gmail.com>, Norman Walsh <Norman.Walsh@marklogic.com>, Ian Hickson <ian@hixie.ch>, public-html@w3.org
On Wed, Dec 29, 2010 at 2:58 AM, John Foliot <jfoliot@stanford.edu> wrote:
> What does seem clear to many is that the current stack of NEWT (New Exciting
> Web Technologies -
> http://www.brucelawson.co.uk/2010/meet-newt-new-exciting-web-technologies/),
> of which HTML5 is clearly a corner-stone, seems to be heavily focused on Web
> Applications, with the idea of "The Semantic Web" trailing off in the
> distance, at least in the minds of many (including mainstream media).

Hmm. It hardly seems surprising that the media is more interested in
shiny web applications than RDF.

What does this have to do with this task force?

None of the previous threads even mentioned the semantic web; they
were all concerned entirely with serialization and parsing details.

> If, as Ian asserts, HTML5 actually brings "the two... in fact closer than
> ever", then proof should be easy to produce and confirm that no problem
> exists.

This seems like a strawman since Ian was talking about text/html and
XML not HTML5 and the semantic web.

> If the real desire however is to ensure that the two pursuits of Web
> Applications and the Semantic Web remain close enough together that they can
> exist inter-operably, then an exercise that undertakes a real examination to
> ensure that this goal is being met surely should be welcomed, and if indeed
> chasms (intended or otherwise) are discovered then we can act collectively
> to address those rifts before they become insurmountable.

I think it's a category error to equate any particular serialization
like XML with the semantic web.

The semantic web is about vocabularies and a data model (RDF).

Yes, it's had a long association with XML as a technology - but so
what? There's nothing essential about that association.

People are actively working on deep RDF integration into text/html via
not only HTML+RDFa but also microformats-to-RDF translations and
microdata.

Web-scale RDFa deployment seems to be happening in a text/html context:

http://developers.facebook.com/docs/opengraph

http://googlewebmastercentral.blogspot.com/2009/05/introducing-rich-snippets.html

http://drupal.org/node/574624

If this task force were primarily concerned with the semantic web and
text/html, then it would be poorly named and likely to be duplicating
the existing joint work of the RDFa WG and HTML WG on HTML+RDFa.

http://www.w3.org/TR/rdfa-in-html/

I encourage those interested in semantic web HTML integration to focus
their efforts on improving that specification (and/or microdata and
the microformats-to-RDF mapping).

--
Benjamin Hawkes-Lewis
Received on Wednesday, 29 December 2010 08:05:43 UTC

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