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Re: The way we do things in the Semantic Web community

From: Sandro Hawke <sandro@w3.org>
Date: Fri, 27 Apr 2012 09:09:57 -0400
To: Andy Seaborne <andy.seaborne@epimorphics.com>
Cc: public-rdf-wg@w3.org
Message-ID: <1335532197.9663.609.camel@waldron>
On Fri, 2012-04-27 at 11:00 +0100, Andy Seaborne wrote:
> 
> On 25/04/12 19:44, Sandro Hawke wrote:
> ...
> 
> > On the other hand, please consider my point: sometimes we can't know
> > whether a design will work until trying it in a fairly big arena, with a
> > lot of attention.   As I understand the history, XML was designed by a
> > W3C Working Group.  Has it succeeded?  Yes, sort of.  Has it failed?
> > Yes, sort of, mostly when it was applied in areas not anticipated by the
> > WG (like for serializing data).
>  >
> > Yes, we probably only get one shot with a W3C Recommendation for this,
> > so we don't want to get it wrong.  But the Named Graphs paper was seven
> > years ago.  I don't think sitting back and waiting for more research to
> > happen is a great strategy, either.
> 
> This is a strong argument for a two strand approach:
> 
> 1/ Standardize the minimal, safe ideas (tested)
> 2/ Layer on top the new ideas to enable usages not currently happening 
> (for testing).
> 
> If (2) doesn't work out, we have at least helped by standardizing 
> low-level details and so (low-level) software will be compatible. 
> Boring but a step forward.

Agreed, with the caveat that "minimal" may (and probably does) include
going a bit beyond what everyone considers "safe" and "tested" as of
today.   

As we've been talking about it in recent weeks, I've been growing more
comfortable with a smaller chunk being standardized here, but I think it
would be a mistake to be *just* syntax, since (as I said), I don't think
it's practical for W3C to publish the semantics to a language months or
years after publishing the syntax.

     -- Sandro
Received on Friday, 27 April 2012 13:10:13 UTC

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