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Re: Introducing Vocabularies of a Friend (VOAF)

From: Kingsley Idehen <kidehen@openlinksw.com>
Date: Tue, 25 Jan 2011 11:21:45 -0500
Message-ID: <4D3EF899.3080908@openlinksw.com>
To: Hugh Glaser <hg@ecs.soton.ac.uk>
CC: Linking Open Data <public-lod@w3.org>
On 1/25/11 8:01 AM, Hugh Glaser wrote:
> Very interesting stuff, but...
> Sorry Bernard, I agree very much with Chris here.
> The name meant little to me as "Vocabularies of a Friend".

Hmm. Is it the Name or Description that's important?

> In fact I think it misled me - I immediately assumed it was to do with representing information about people (as FOAF), and it took me quite a while to challenge that assumption when I looked at the pages (that is, it actually inhibited my understanding).

But what about discerning meaning from the VOAF graph?

> And the tag line doesn't tell me much more.
> And clearly I am not the only one.

But isn't this whole Linked Data gig about doing away with superficial 
literal monikers when actual meaning is a graph de-ref away?

> I don't know whether pronouncing things as acronyms (ie words, not initials) is a peculiarly English language thing, but that is what happens.
> VOAF is too mistakable for FOAF (in fact I find myself sub-vocalizing it as FOAF, as FOAF is so familiar to me).
> And when I think of how, for example, a native Spaniard or Japanese would pronounce VOAF and FOAF when speaking English, I find it hard to imagine always detecting the difference.
> Simply because it is an homage to another vocabulary that might have a similar structure or abstract purpose doesn't mean that it is a good thing to do.
> And I am not at all sure that getting Dan's stamp of approval is really the commit point!
> Quite often names really are important.

Depends on realm, in our human realm we are still de-referencing a graph 
and making sense of it. VOAF exists in human and machine comprehensible 

> Perhaps getting this feedback early on will prove really valuable?
> As I say, a really interesting activity in an important area, and sorry to give my 2 centimes worth on the name.

Have you moved to the next step i.e., looking at the VOAF graph and 
seeking what it delivers?  :-)

Happy New Year!

> Best
> Hugh
> On 19 Jan 2011, at 23:29, Bernard Vatant wrote:
> Hi Christopher
> I can't help but feel that calling it VOAF is just going to muddy the waters. "Friendly vocabularies for the linked data Web"
> doesn't help clarify either. It's cute, but I strongly suggest you at the very least make this 'tag line' far more clear.
> I agree the current documentation is too sketchy and potentially misleading as is. I have put efforts mainly on the dataset itself so far, but you're right it has to be better documented.
> Regarding the name, well, the pun is here to stay I'm afraid. I've had positive feedback from Dan Brickley about it, so I already feel it's too late to change now.
> Frankly calling something 'voaf' when people will hear it mixed in with 'foaf' is just making the world more confusing.
> Actually I've not thought much (not at all) about how people would pronounce or hear it. I principally communicate with vocabularies (and people using them) through written stuff, and very rarely speak about them. I barely know how to pronounce OWL, and always feel like a fool when I've to, and will eventually spell it O.W.L. - as every other french native would do. If I had to speak about VOAF, I think I would spell it also V.O.A.F.
> I had a lot of confusion until I found out the "SHOCK" vocab people were talking about was spelled SIOC.
> Interesting, I was confused exactly the other way round. I've read a lot (and written a bit) about SIOC since it's been around, but realized only two days ago how it was pronounced when I actually heard someone "speaking" about it the "right" way ... and thought at first time it was something else.
> Me too!
> I knew about them both, and took a while to realise they were the same thing :-)
> One other minor suggestion;
> Vocabulary<http://graphite.ecs.soton.ac.uk/browser/?uri=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.mondeca.com%2Ffoaf%2Fvoaf%23Vocabulary#http://www.mondeca.com/foaf/voaf%23Vocabulary>  → rdfs:subClassOf<http://graphite.ecs.soton.ac.uk/browser/?uri=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.w3.org%2F2000%2F01%2Frdf-schema%23subClassOf#http://www.w3.org/2000/01/rdf-schema%23subClassOf>  → void:Dataset<http://graphite.ecs.soton.ac.uk/browser/?uri=http%3A%2F%2Frdfs.org%2Fns%2Fvoid%23Dataset#http://rdfs.org/ns/void%23Dataset>
> might be a mistake because void:Dataset is defined as "A set of RDF triples that are published, maintained or aggregated by a single provider."
> Not a bug, but a feature. It's exactly what a voaf:Vocabulary is.
> and it may be that you would want to define non RDF vocabs using this.
> You might want to do that but I don't and I'm the vocabulary creator (right?) so I can insist on the fact that this is really meant to describe *RDF* vocabularies, and cast this intention in the stone of formal semantics.
> If you want to describe other kind of vocabularies the same way, feel free to use or create something else. Or extend foaf:Vocabulary to a more generic class. It's an open world, let thousand flowers blossom :)
> I see no value in making this restriction.
> The value I see is to keep this vocabulary use focused on what it was meant for.
> Best
> Bernard
> --
> Bernard Vatant
> Senior Consultant
> Vocabulary&  Data Engineering
> Tel:       +33 (0) 971 488 459
> Mail:     bernard.vatant@mondeca.com<mailto:bernard.vatant@mondeca.com>
> ----------------------------------------------------
> Mondeca
> 3, cité Nollez 75018 Paris France
> Web:    http://www.mondeca.com<http://www.mondeca.com/>
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> ----------------------------------------------------
> --
> Hugh Glaser,
>                Intelligence, Agents, Multimedia
>                School of Electronics and Computer Science,
>                University of Southampton,
>                Southampton SO17 1BJ
> Work: +44 23 8059 3670, Fax: +44 23 8059 3045
> Mobile: +44 78 9422 3822, Home: +44 23 8061 5652
> http://www.ecs.soton.ac.uk/~hg/



Kingsley Idehen	
President&  CEO
OpenLink Software
Web: http://www.openlinksw.com
Weblog: http://www.openlinksw.com/blog/~kidehen
Twitter/Identi.ca: kidehen
Received on Tuesday, 25 January 2011 16:22:14 UTC

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