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Re: Comments on Data 3.0 manifesto

From: Leigh Dodds <leigh.dodds@talis.com>
Date: Mon, 19 Apr 2010 17:08:32 +0100
Message-ID: <y2yf323a4471004190908o13fd494ao1d089d094d736683@mail.gmail.com>
To: Kingsley Idehen <kidehen@openlinksw.com>
Cc: Richard Cyganiak <richard@cyganiak.de>, public-lod <public-lod@w3.org>
Hi Kingsley,

Thanks for the response. I wanted to clarify a couple of points.
Response edited and comments line:

On 19 April 2010 16:28, Kingsley Idehen <kidehen@openlinksw.com> wrote:
> I can replicate every killer ODBC demo I gave circa. 1993 with Linked
> Data just by opening up a Descriptor URL. But, I can't really pull that
> off today smoothly because my effort will ultimately get hijacked by RDF
> issues like:
>
> 1. What is this thing you opened via a URL from Access or Excel?
> 2. Why do those LINKs do the wonderful things we see (e.g., polymorphic
> resultsets i.e., the pattern you see in snorql or isparql query results
> tables)
> 3. etc..
>
> The distraction in the scenario above will either come from a confused
> user or a Semantic Web aficionado.  Ironically, both are equally
> confused, all of the time, but one party doesn't know it :-(

I'm not sure I really follow that.

Might the confusion you're seeing just be genuine questions about
trying to understand what your demos are doing? (You don't always
provide much context)

> ...
> RDF inadvertently conflates Data Model and Data Representation Formats.

Do you really mean that, or that *people* have conflated those two
aspects of RDF?

> This is an old snafu from the first coming of RDF, and sadly we can't
> fix that in 2010. Simply stating: "RDF is based on a Graph Model..."
> isn't enough. What Graph Model are we talking about? One that dropped
> upon us from Space? Or one that we've used since the start of time?

The one in the RDF Model spec?

I take your point though about context.

> People like to claim they grok the fact that Resource Description
> Framework is: Graph Data Model and a collection of associated Data
> Representation Formats, but in the same guise all attention is paid to
> the latter. Even worse, RDF/XML  is still pitched as the only official
> variant of latter (even in 2010). Look at how long it's taken RDFa to
> emerge, and the amount of pressure its taken get it this far etc.

I think once people move beyond theory they naturally enough look at
how they're exchanging data, how to parse it, etc. This is when syntax
issues arise, they do get in the way, but problems aren't
insurmountable.

Having some more RDF syntaxes reach Recommendation status would be a
good thing though.

>> Even for technical audiences, beginning from EAV or RDF model doesn't
>> always help.
>
> Well if the technical audience in question doesn't make the connection
> between DBMS realm and Linked Data, of course not. Likewise, if  they
> don't make the connection between standards based Data Access and Linked
> Data, of course not. The Data 3.0 manifesto or emphasis on the EAV
> cannot resonate with said audience, and its not who I am actually trying
> to speak to either.

Actually what I meant was: people have different approaches to
learning (new technologies or otherwise). Some will warm to a theory
first approach, others just want to get their hands dirty. Starting
with a general introduction to modelling isn't useful for the latter
audience.

> I am much more interested in people that already work with data,  via
> tools without writing a single line of code.

Yes I'm interested in how Linked Data can put powerful tools into the
hands of non-programmers too.

> I am simply saying to the audience above:
>
> 1. We have Structured Data
> 2. Here is how you make Structured Data (i.e. the underlying model)
> 3. Here is how you share Structured Data (via Descriptor Documents on an
> HTTP network).
>
> When people understand 1-3 (in many cases making links to what they
> already grok), they can get on with exploiting the kind of
> individual/enterprise Agility levels that real Open (standards
> compliant) Data Access and Integration accords.

To be clear: are you advocating a broader view of Linked Data that
doesn't use RDF technologies at all?

If so what are you recommending that people use, for e.g. "Descriptor
Documents".

Cheers,

L.

-- 
Leigh Dodds
Programme Manager, Talis Platform
Talis
leigh.dodds@talis.com
http://www.talis.com
Received on Monday, 19 April 2010 16:09:06 UTC

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