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Re: The RDF Approach to Indicating Language-In-Use

From: pat hayes <phayes@ihmc.us>
Date: Thu, 30 Oct 2003 10:10:45 -0600
Message-Id: <p06001f06bbc6e58b3e37@[10.1.31.1]>
To: "Peter F. Patel-Schneider" <pfps@research.bell-labs.com>
Cc: public-sw-meaning@w3.org

>From: Sandro Hawke <sandro@w3.org>
>Subject: Re: The RDF Approach to Indicating Language-In-Use
>Date: Wed, 29 Oct 2003 16:44:58 -0500
>
>>
>>
>>  > The *only* aspects of all of this that fall into the purview of the
>>  > Semantic Web are an importing mechanism and the translation from a name to
>>  > a namespace address.
>>
>>  Is owl:imports satisfactory as an importing mechanism?   (That is,
>>  does OWL going to REC get you part 1?)
>
>As far as I am concerned, owl:imports is sufficient.  However, OWL going to
>REC doesn't solve everyone's problems.  In particular, RDF is left without
>an importing mechanism.

I fail to see how an importing mechanism deals with the central 
issues here. The main issue, to me, is what one should be able to do 
with a URIref occurring inside RDF/RDFS/OWL/whatever in a document. 
Should there be a presumption that the Web can(/may/oughtto) be used 
to retrieve some kind of information which might be useful to an 
agent (human or software) in drawing conclusions concerning that 
URIref? If not, URIrefs in OWL (other than in owl:imports) are just 
logical constants, so why the hell are we obliged to use URI syntax 
in these languages? If so, what protocols/assumptions are to be 
expected or invented to support the nature of these sources and how 
to retrieve and use them? I personally don't find the former position 
(importing does it all, URIrefs outside imports are meaningless) 
acceptable: it reduces the SWeb to conventional ontologies which 
happen to be on the Web, which may well be useful but isnt the vision 
of the SW that gets me excited.

On the other hand, since our primary task is to produce some words, I 
think that it is important not to say anything which would be 
*inconsistent* with the conventional-ontologies-on-the-Web view, 
since that is where the immediate industrial applications are.

Pat

>I do agree that it would be useful to import parts of documents, but I
>don't think that this is essential.
>
>>  As for the translation: do you want to end up with a namespace string,
>>  or with some document fetched over the web?   In either case, does it
>>  work to just follow normal web retrieval: chop off the fragment string
>>  & follow any 3xx redirects you get?
>
>Well, there are two parts to this, of course.  Both are necessary to get
>something useful, but only the first part (name to address) is specific to
>the Semantic Web, and even that part looks a lot like the standard web
>mechanism.  (I do not know much about going from a URI to a document
>(including content negotiation).  From what I do know it looks to be
>sufficient for the short term.)
>
>>     -- sandro
>
>peter


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Received on Thursday, 30 October 2003 11:10:52 GMT

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