W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > public-linked-json@w3.org > October 2011

Re: Merge @type and @datatype

From: Manu Sporny <msporny@digitalbazaar.com>
Date: Sun, 02 Oct 2011 17:27:17 -0400
Message-ID: <4E88D735.5030208@digitalbazaar.com>
To: public-linked-json@w3.org
On 10/01/2011 05:55 PM, Ivan Herman wrote:
> I am not worried by the implementation issues but... my mind may be
> too rdf infested:-) and this merge may be a bit confusing. I am a bit
> afraid that people will then use datatypes as types for subjects or
> other types for literals. Which may create a mess.

Speaking as someone else whose mind is also too RDF infested... :P ...
then they're authoring bad data and their data will not fit in very well
with the rest of the Linked Data Web, no? Or the application with which
they're trying to interface with will get junk data?

I do see your concern, Ivan, and it's valid. However, I wonder if people
will really make this mistake often enough for it to matter? That is, if
you're using something that should be used with "rdf:type" with a
"@literal", then it will become a problem at some point for your
application. You will educate yourself quickly when somebody else points
out that you've gotten it wrong.

To put it another way, the audience that we're talking about is
important. If we were talking about web authors and RDFa, I may agree
completely with you. However, we're talking about developers, who tend
to be a bit more pedantic about the data that they generate and consume.
They care about correctness a bit more. I don't think people are likely
to do this and get away with it:

"foaf:name":
{
    "@literal": "Ivan Herman",
    "@type": "foaf:Person"
}

Another take on this is that people will be confused with @datatype and
@type - possibly using @datatype with the subject and @type with the
@literal. There are plenty of ways to get confused with this stuff... so
which one is the most likely to happen for a newbie? I don't really have
a good answer to this one, but I do lean towards merging @type and
@datatype because it will 1) simplify the number of terms people need to
use and 2) won't result in a catastrophic data mess as I don't expect
people to use @literal that often (they'll probably depend on @coerce to
"do the right thing"(tm)).

Anyone else want to weigh in on this?

-- manu

-- 
Manu Sporny (skype: msporny, twitter: manusporny)
Founder/CEO - Digital Bazaar, Inc.
blog: Standardizing Payment Links - Why Online Tipping has Failed
http://manu.sporny.org/2011/payment-links/
Received on Sunday, 2 October 2011 21:27:55 GMT

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