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Re: 20 reasons "rdf sucks"

From: Bill de hOra <bill@dehora.net>
Date: Sat, 18 Nov 2006 21:08:35 +0000
Message-ID: <455F7653.20008@dehora.net>
To: Steve Harris <steve.harris@garlik.com>, Danny Ayers <danny.ayers@gmail.com>
CC: public-sweo-ig@w3.org

Steve Harris wrote:

> I have to say I'm not a huge fan of RDF/XML myself, whilst an XML 
> serialisation is important RDF/XML is difficult to write and very hard 
> to generate neatly. It's a pain to parse too.
> 
> My experiences of introducing developers to RDF is that they generally 
> take to N3/Turtle or NTriples much more easily. The RDF/XML syntax is a 
> lot to pick up on top of the RDF model.

If there's a Maslow hierarchy of needs for the Web, syntax is on the bottom.

I agree with Steve, but no surprise there. The main complaint I had (and 
have seen with others) is that because the syntax is variable, you can't 
line up a few RDF stacks and non-RDF stacks and expect things to work 
out. It fundamentally isn't interoperable across marshallers and 
serializers unless you go end to end with RDF/XML aware stacks (eg it's 
very like a WS-* chain). That ups the deployment stakes hugely, which 
results in an impasse with adopting RDF across administrations - 
everyone needs to go first. Given RDF itself is interoperable, this is 
clearly a nutso situation.

And yes, RDF/XML is difficult to write. After 6/7 years, I can write out 
  flat RDF/XML, but I still need the validator to verify I'm striping 
properly.

Surely nobody thinks RDF isn't widely adopted because of RDF? Or are you 
guys maintaining a barrier to entry because RDF gives you a competitive 
advantage ;)

Turtle on the other hand is a very decent syntax (it reminds me of RNC). 
Something like a JSON format would be even better for developer 
mindshare - " here's some JSON; it happens to be RDF too, but you don't 
have to worry about that right now, just load it. Come back next week 
and we'll talk about the RDF stuff." - is compelling.

cheers
Bill
Received on Monday, 20 November 2006 00:36:14 GMT

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