W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > public-rdf-in-xhtml-tf@w3.org > February 2009

Re: RDFa Questions Answered (part 1/N)

From: Ben Adida <ben@adida.net>
Date: Tue, 24 Feb 2009 08:29:41 -0800
Message-ID: <49A42075.4080007@adida.net>
To: Manu Sporny <msporny@digitalbazaar.com>
CC: RDFa mailing list <public-rdf-in-xhtml-tf@w3.org>, Ian Hickson <ian@hixie.ch>, Henri Sivonen <hsivonen@iki.fi>
Manu Sporny wrote:
> So, is it a bad sign that I had never really seen this stuff?

It's a sign that we should add some links, I agree :)

I'll do that shortly.

> I can say that I have never, once, read a single conference or journal
> article on RDF... PhDs do that sort of stuff...

Well, you should try to read some now that you're part of a standards
group on RDF :) The web came from academic research. Not everything in
the research literature is immediately useful, far from it, but if
you're dealing in web standards, completely ignoring the literature is
almost as bad as a physician completely ignoring the latest medical
research. (And physicians don't know which articles are good or bad
ahead of time, either.)

The average web developer who barely reads and never writes specs
doesn't need to read conference papers, but spec writers should.

> Everything that I have read about RDF has
> been via the web...

Many academic papers are now available on the web, although of course
you point to a serious problem with some academic circles that do not
provide open access. I certainly don't think anyone needs to go paying
fees. Google Scholar is good enough.

http://scholar.google.com

> Even I wouldn't know where to find the right set of articles that would
> give me a full understanding of RDF and RDFa.

That's part of being in the research community: there isn't a top-down
decision as to what is the "right" set of articles. You have to wade
through a lot of stuff to find the interesting nuggets.

Again, I'm not saying a web developer trying to build their online
dating site needs to do this wading. Spec folks, on the other hand,
talking within W3C working groups about technologies that are mentioned
in their charter, *should* be doing this work.

> Yes, absolutely agreed and I do think that Ian and Henri are making a
> significant effort to understand RDFa in more detail. Both in online and
> offline conversations that I've had with both of them.

Yes, I agree and much appreciate that they're making a substantial effort.

That said, there remains too much going back to first principles, as if
the work and research done by others is worthless until explained from
scratch on an HTML5 mailing list.

> I agree with the essence of what you said, Ben... I just think that
> there  are some specific things that the RDFa community (not the RDFa
> Task Force) could do to help adoption rates.

I absolutely agree with that. I just don't think that Ian == the average
web developer :)

-Ben
Received on Tuesday, 24 February 2009 16:30:18 GMT

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