W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > public-semweb-lifesci@w3.org > February 2010

Re: When does a document acquire (web) semantics?

From: Peter Ansell <ansell.peter@gmail.com>
Date: Tue, 2 Feb 2010 09:40:48 +1000
Message-ID: <a1be7e0e1002011540t4709474akfa3f0974054fb205@mail.gmail.com>
To: Andrea Splendiani <andrea.splendiani@bbsrc.ac.uk>
Cc: John Madden <john.madden@duke.edu>, w3c semweb HCLS <public-semweb-lifesci@w3.org>, "Eric Prud'hommeaux" <eric@w3.org>
I agree completely!

Cheers,

Peter

On 2 February 2010 09:26, Andrea Splendiani
<andrea.splendiani@bbsrc.ac.uk> wrote:
> Hi,
>
> I think there are two aspects related to semantics.
> One is interpretation (like: the world is flat by Mark). And this is in the ontology or, if you want, even in queries.
> But there is also the fact that you "name" things when you expose a resource. The resource itself, or some info in more detail.
> This naming is based on some common grounding without which you cannot apply ontologies or queries.
>
> my 0.1 cents
>
> ciao,
> Andrea
>
> On 1 Feb 2010, at 18:30, John Madden wrote:
>
>> We had an interesting call in TERM today. One of the topics I would like to boil down to the question "When does a document acquire its semantics?" or, "when does a document come to mean something?"
>>
>> I argued the (admittedly intentionally) radical view that documents have no semantics whatsoever until a reader performs an act of interpretation upon the document, which in the Semantic Web world would be the same as attributing an RDF/OWL graph to the document.
>>
>> Even if the author of the document attributes a a particular RDF/OWL graph to her won document, I argued that this graph is not privileged in any way. That others could justifiably argue that the author's own RDF/OWL graph is incomplete, or flawed, or irrelevant, or even incorrect. And the same is true of any subsequent interpreters (i.e. authors of RDF/OWL graphs that purport to represent the "meaning" of the same document).
>>
>> Eric argued a really interesting point. He argued (and Eric, correct me if I'm interpreting you wrong here), that semantics instead come into existence (or perhaps *can* come into existence) at the point when somebody executes a SPARQL query on a set of RDF/OWL graphs. That is to say, maybe I'm wrong and semantics doesn't even come into existence when somebody attributes an RDF/XML graph to a document; but rather it only comes into existence when somebody queries across (possibly) many graphs of many different people.
>>
>> What do you think?
>>
>> John
>
> ---
> Andrea Splendiani
> Senior Bioinformatics Scientist
> Rothamsted Research, Harpenden, UK
> andrea.splendiani@bbsrc.ac.uk
> +44(0)1582 763133 ext 2004
>
>
>
Received on Monday, 1 February 2010 23:41:22 GMT

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.3.1 : Tuesday, 26 March 2013 18:00:58 GMT