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Re: Refers Or Denotes?

From: Melvin Carvalho <melvincarvalho@gmail.com>
Date: Wed, 13 Feb 2013 02:32:44 +0100
Message-ID: <CAKaEYhKfZGSeaRePP0cZEHSAuPBZPa11Hz2E9Re+7Ax7yoP23w@mail.gmail.com>
To: Pat Hayes <phayes@ihmc.us>
Cc: Henry Story <henry.story@bblfish.net>, "public-rdf-comments@w3.org" <public-rdf-comments@w3.org>, public-webid Group <public-webid@w3.org>, "public-philoweb@w3.org" <public-philoweb@w3.org>
On 12 February 2013 23:09, Pat Hayes <phayes@ihmc.us> wrote:

>
> On Feb 12, 2013, at 2:58 PM, Henry Story wrote:
>
> > A question that came up on the WebID mailing list. We'd just like some
> clarification
> > for the use of denotes, as the issue has come up there.
> >
> > On 11 Feb 2013, at 21:37, Kingsley Idehen <kidehen@openlinksw.com>
> wrote:
> >
> >> Henry / Andrei,
> >>
> >> I current see [ in
> https://dvcs.w3.org/hg/WebID/raw-file/tip/spec/identity-respec.html ]
> >> "A WebID is an HTTP URI which *refers* to an Agent (Person,
> Organization, Group, Device, etc.)."
> >>
> >> But in the context of RDF based Linked Data, the RDF workgroup (after
> serious thought on this matter) [1] has opted to use what would equate to:
> >>
> >> A WebID is an HTTP URI which *denotes* an Agent (Person, Organization,
> Group, Device, etc.).
> >>
> >> The more we stick to definitions and terminology being used across
> other W3C groups the easier things will be (on the appreciation and
> adoption front)  for WebID, over the long haul.
> >
> >>
> >> Links:
> >>
> >> 1.
> http://www.w3.org/TR/2013/WD-rdf11-concepts-20130115/#resources-and-statements.
> >> 2. http://www.w3.org/TR/2013/WD-rdf11-concepts-20130115/ -- latest RDF
> 1.1 Concepts and Abstract Syntax edition .
> >
> > I am not sure why "denotes" is being taken up by the RDF group nowadays,
> when most philosophy books and logic books tend to use the word "refer".
>
> Not in my experience, but YMMV.
>
> > Most engineers use the word refer too on a daily basis.
> >
> > In fact it is quite clear from the RDF concepts text that the two words
> are near synonymous, since what an IRI denotes is called its referent:
>
> Yes. "denotes" is identical in meaning to "refers to". We could also have
> said "names", but that introduces potential baggage over what counts as a
> true name, proper names, etc.., so we avoided it deliberately.
>
> > [[
> > Any IRI or literal denotes some thing in the universe of discourse.
> These things are called resources. Anything can be a resource, including
> physical things, documents, abstract concepts, numbers and strings; the
> term is synonymous with “entity”. The resource denoted by an IRI is called
> its referent,
> > ]]
> >
> > I am ok with denotes. But we can also use referent according to that
> text.
>
> The verb form is "refer". "Referent" corresponds to "denotation".
>
> > So I don't think this is a very settled matter - given furthermore that
> the above is not yet a final spec.
> >
> > I would like to know why this decision is being made though. Is that
> just an aesthetic statement, or is there more behind it?
>
> I may be responsible for "denote" in the RDF specs. I used it when writing
> the 2004 semantics specification. As far as I am concerned it is simply an
> English word, the most natural one to use in this context. It is not
> intended to convey anything unusual or to sneak anything in by the back
> door. So, yes, purely aesthetic.  If you prefer the "refers to"/"referent"
> language, that is fine with me. They mean the same thing.
>

+1

A WebID  URI that denotes an Agent.

The spec may not say that now, for various reasons, and I'm 100% happy to
support that.  But if all goes well that's the destination ...


>
> Pat
>
> >
> > Henry
> >
> >>
> >> --
> >>
> >> Regards,
> >>
> >> Kingsley Idehen
> >> Founder & CEO
> >> OpenLink Software
> >> Company Web: http://www.openlinksw.com
> >> Personal Weblog: http://www.openlinksw.com/blog/~kidehen
> >> Twitter/Identi.ca handle: @kidehen
> >> Google+ Profile: https://plus.google.com/112399767740508618350/about
> >> LinkedIn Profile: http://www.linkedin.com/in/kidehen
> >>
> >>
> >>
> >>
> >>The rest is tactics
> >
> > Social Web Architect
> > http://bblfish.net/
> >
>
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Received on Wednesday, 13 February 2013 01:33:15 GMT

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