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Re: What is a WebID?

From: Melvin Carvalho <melvincarvalho@gmail.com>
Date: Sat, 3 Nov 2012 19:21:40 +0100
Message-ID: <CAKaEYhJ7E6RvOw7NZxoWhjpMbmHkS0Oy3QOkzcY5xTkrTxEFtg@mail.gmail.com>
To: Kingsley Idehen <kidehen@openlinksw.com>
Cc: public-xg-webid@w3.org
On 3 November 2012 19:14, Kingsley Idehen <kidehen@openlinksw.com> wrote:

>  On 11/3/12 1:49 PM, Melvin Carvalho wrote:
>
>
>
> On 31 October 2012 14:38, Kingsley Idehen <kidehen@openlinksw.com> wrote:
>
>> All,
>>
>> In the last 48 hours following TPAC, a definition of what a WebID has
>> emerged. It reads as follows: "WebID" (hash HTTP URI which denotes an
>> Agent. Where you can GET an RDF model as TURTLE.) .
>>
>> I believe this definition is unnecessary inflexible albeit well intended.
>>
>> Problem:
>>
>> A URI is an opaque identifier.
>>
>> A Linked Data URI is a de-referencable URI that denotes an entity in such
>> a way that when de-referenced said URI resolves to a description document
>> of its referent. Put differently, you have two routes to the same document
>> content i.e., the first being the entity name (URI) and the other being the
>> entity description document address (URI/URL). Ideally, the content of the
>> document in question takes the form of RDF model based structured data
>> represented (or expressed) using an entity relationship graph.
>>
>> A WebID supposed to be a Linked Data URI.
>>
>> HTTP, hash URIs, and even the RDF data model are specific implementation
>> details. They are collectively cost-effective and useful, but none of that
>> makes them mandatory items for specs relating to Linked Data, Web-scale
>> identity verification, or Web-scale resource access control.
>>
>> The architecture of the Web is deliberately abstract thereby enabling
>> powerful loose coupling of data access protocols, data representation
>> formats, and semantics.
>>
>> Simple Example:
>>
>> At this point in time, should this definition hold, the hashless
>> ProxyURIs that we use to watermark X.509 certificates for holders of
>> LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, G+ etc.. accounts are all rendered non
>> conforming, just like that.
>>
>> Conclusion:
>>
>> I am officially lodging my opposition to this definition of a URI that
>> serves as a WebID.
>>
>
> Kingsley, I share you concerns.
>
> It's important to note that this is primarily a branding issue rather than
> technical.
>
>
> You don't use branding to diminish. It's supposed to enhance.
>
> The effect of this so-called branding is negative.
>
>
> We've changed brand before, namely from FOAF+SSL to WebID.
>
>
> FOAF != compromising URI opacity (which is major degradation of AWWW and
> its architectural dexterity) .
>
>
>
> Personally, I find it hard to weigh the pros vs cons of this decision.
> But I do think having an agreed consensus of what terms means (eg identity
> vs authentication protocol) is a plus.
>
>
> Its a major minus.
>
>
>
> I was also horrified to learn that I didnt have a webid anymore, but got
> it serving turtle via conneg within an hour, and as a direct result could
> log in to my profile again!
>
>
> Turtle utility isn't in question. That doesn't mean WebIDs, Hash URIs, and
> Turtle docs == savvy WebID branding. It simply isn't.
>
> The game isn't about formats and syntax. It's about entity relationship
> semantics and logic. Notations for expressing entity relationship graphs
> and across-the-wire serialization formats don't need to be distractions.
> Conflation has never worked as a branding mechanism. Look at the history
> before you:
>
> 1. RDF - data model + notation + serialization formats conflation
> 2. SPARQL - query language + query dispatch and results retrieval protocol
> + query results serialization formats
> 3. Linked Data - data representation and data access mechanism that RDF
> community sees as RDF re-branding
> 4. and now WebID -- pattern to be repeated by this new repetition of the
> broken branding DNA.
>
> Appreciation and adoption of all the items above are stunted by the
> confusing effects of conflation based branding.
>
> HTML isn't why the WWW took off, that's a misconception. It took off
> because a browser provided a mechanism for understanding hypertext and
> documents, at internet scale. This all happened because of the "view
> source" pattern where folks copied and pasted the code behind these pages
> which lead to "instant gratification" etc..
>
> Forcing a format on folks in any guise is broken by way of unnecessary
> distraction. This is about semantics, not syntax!
>

I appreciate all the points above and grok the value of modularity and
universality as the key advantages of the web.

At the end of the day, im personally interested in technology that works,
and have less of a strong opinion on what it is called.  The tech hasnt
changed, just a slightly different way of delivering the message.


>
>
> Kingsley
>
>
>
>>
>> --
>>
>> Regards,
>>
>> Kingsley Idehen
>> Founder & CEO
>> OpenLink Software
>> Company Web: http://www.openlinksw.com
>> Personal Weblog: http://www.openlinksw.com/blog/~kidehen
>> Twitter/Identi.ca handle: @kidehen
>> Google+ Profile: https://plus.google.com/112399767740508618350/about
>> LinkedIn Profile: http://www.linkedin.com/in/kidehen
>>
>>
>>
>>
>>
>>
>
>
> --
>
> Regards,
>
> Kingsley Idehen	
> Founder & CEO
> OpenLink Software
> Company Web: http://www.openlinksw.com
> Personal Weblog: http://www.openlinksw.com/blog/~kidehen
> Twitter/Identi.ca handle: @kidehen
> Google+ Profile: https://plus.google.com/112399767740508618350/about
> LinkedIn Profile: http://www.linkedin.com/in/kidehen
>
>
>
>
Received on Saturday, 3 November 2012 18:22:08 GMT

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