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Re: Thoughts on RDFa from Twitter

From: Mark Birbeck <mark.birbeck@webbackplane.com>
Date: Fri, 21 Jan 2011 10:00:00 +0000
Message-ID: <AANLkTim8bN7J-UgHO=bM_F2FrO8gdS65n94uvv9BihZS@mail.gmail.com>
To: Manu Sporny <msporny@digitalbazaar.com>
Cc: RDFa WG <public-rdfa-wg@w3.org>
Excellent summary, Many.

Would make a great blog-post, if you haven't done so that already.

Mark


On Fri, Jan 21, 2011 at 1:32 AM, Manu Sporny <msporny@digitalbazaar.com> wrote:
> Some thoughts on RDFa from Twitter. I know that we've covered most of
> this stuff before, but it's still interesting to see how folks that
> opinion in mind as we put the finishing touches on RDFa 1.1 and think
> about how to aid adoption in the future:
>
> nevali: @derivadow SVG+RDFa? ;)
>
> derivadow: @nevali yeah yeah - have added a bit of RDFa to all our pages...
>
> nevali: @derivadow I have *massive* misgivings about RDFa, in truth. I
> think it's a total bust.
>
> nevali: @fantasticlife I'm actually starting to come to that conclusion.
> RDFa exists, people keep mentioning it, but when I say it's broken
> everyone seems to agree?!
>
> derivadow: @nevali yeah i know what you mean - we've only implemented
> the crumbtrail RDFa
>
> manusporny: @nevali @derivadow @fantasticlife So, what's broken with
> RDFa? Would like to know 'cause we're working on RDFa 1.1 right now.
>
> nevali: @manusporny the basic principles of it. the people who know the
> things you need to know to do RDFa aren't the people who make templates.
>
> nevali: @manusporny a bit more detail here  http://neva.li/dIq8Kc
>
> fantasticlife: @manusporny dunno. not heard any complaints. best to ask
> @moustaki tho. he's sprinkling rdfa liberally around /programmes and
> seems happy
>
> fantasticlife: @manusporny and tend to disagree with @nevali's post.
> front end people (& designers & prod managers etc) should know the models...
>
> fantasticlife: @manusporny @nevali ...it's when they don't that things
> blow up :-/
>
> nevali: @fantasticlife @manusporny unfortunately, the reality of real
> web dev work out there disagrees :\
>
> fantasticlife: @nevali @manusporny maybe. i say employ better
> developers. rdfa or no rdfa they'll pay for themselves in the long run :-)
>
> derivadow: @manusporny mostly coz it adds chaff to the page when it can
> more usefully be included in full fat RDF
>
> derivadow: @manusporny it does really solve many problems that aren't
> better solved with RDF
>
> manusporny: @nevali @derivadow @fantasticlife What do you think about
> Drupal 7 including RDFa by default? Are RDFa-aware CMSes a model that works?
>
> nevali: @manusporny only if the RDFa is baked into the code, rather than
> the templates... to be clear, I'm fond if the idea - concerns all practical
>
> fantasticlife: @manusporny again unsure. we don't use cms in my bit of
> world. but past experience makes me think they encourage u to model
> pages not things
>
> -------------------
>
> Here are the things that I took away from this chat:
>
> 1. There is still this general belief that RDFa doesn't do anything
>  more than what RDF/XML did. People don't seem to understand that
>  RDF/XML was not adopted over the past 10 years because people
>  didn't want to serve up two different types of pages. Now that
>  they can mix data and display, even though it's messy, people are
>  finally publishing data in their HTML.
> 2. Some people seem to be against the idea of mixing data and display,
>  even though when presented with the option to separate data from
>  display (RDF/XML or JSON), people don't take it. It's as if
>  people are arguing for a clean solution (RDF/XML, TURTLE, N3, etc.),
>  but once that solution is presented to them, they're annoyed that
>  it's more complicated than the dirty solution (RDFa).
> 3. There is an assertion that the people that make website templates
>  are not the people that understand RDFa. Don't know if that's
>  true in general or not, but it's worth thinking about this more
>  deeply - and is a good argument for the RDFa Cookbook and live
>  RDFa editors.
> 4. An idea that RDFa should be baked into the code rather than
>  the templates. This goes counter to what the community has been
>  advising - wondering why this approach is being floated as an
>  option?
>
> In general, the chat demonstrates what many of us know already - we have
> a very long road ahead explaining to web designers why certain design
> decisions for RDFa were made:
>
> 1. History taught us that separating data from display, while
>  "pure" in design, failed to convince people to publish their data.
>  We've had 10 years of RDF/XML, with very minor uptake. Mostly because
>  there was no benefit for publishing RDF/XML - Google/Yahoo didn't
>  index it because nobody was publishing it. Nobody would publish it
>  because Google/Yahoo wasn't indexing it. Catch-22.
> 2. There are already plenty of options for expressing data separately
>  from the page - in general, only the semantic experts use this
>  technology. We didn't need another separate data format.
> 3. RDFa allows one to modify page templates very little to transform
>  a templated website into a semantically enabled website. Got a
>  <span class="name"></span> field in your template? Make it semantic
>  by adding one property (and one @about statement in the surrounding
>  paragraph tag):
>  <span class="name" property="foaf:name"></span>
>
> -- manu
>
> --
> Manu Sporny (skype: msporny, twitter: manusporny)
> President/CEO - Digital Bazaar, Inc.
> blog: Linked Data in JSON
> http://digitalbazaar.com/2010/10/30/json-ld/
>
>
Received on Friday, 21 January 2011 10:01:15 GMT

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