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Re: Deprecate http://www.w3.org/1999/02/22-rdf-syntax-ns# in favour of /ns/rdf# ??

From: Ivan Herman <ivan@w3.org>
Date: Thu, 28 Nov 2013 15:48:04 +0100
Cc: W3C Semantic Web IG <semantic-web@w3.org>, W3C Chairs of RDF WG <team-rdf-chairs@w3.org>
Message-Id: <3A32F38A-B098-4C55-801F-37BF7BDECA0E@w3.org>
To: Phil Archer <phila@w3.org>

There would be major issues with that, like what to do with the billions of triples that are out there already which use those, tools that have that URI _hardcoded_ in their source, etc. B.t.w., the OWL namespace is just as awful and subject to copy-paste...

But I do not even want to go there; indeed, it is too late to change the namespace URI-s. The current namespaces are all over the place in the RDF 1.1 CR documents as well as the test suites, and we hope to be in position to go to PR mid December, and then declare victory and close the RDF WG sometimes mid winter. Doing such a change would push those dates and would jeopardize the proper closure of the work. Let us not even think about it!

Note, however, that the namespace documents themselves (on the old URI-s) can be improved by the team or a community group in term of documentation, labels, what have you. That would indeed be a good thing to do; as long as the changes are editorial only, it is fine (those documents are not in /TR space). But we should not touch the URIs themselves.


P.S. And yes, the current URI-s are a pain in the back. That was a mistake done many years ago which we will have to live with...

On 28 Nov 2013, at 15:27 , Phil Archer <phila@w3.org> wrote:

> Dear all,
> An idea has been floated and I'd like to assess the community's reaction. The rdf and rdfs namespaces are hard to remember (I always copy and paste, I guess you do too), but how do you react to the idea of deprecating those namespaces in favour of the much easier to remember http://www.w3.org/ns/rdf|s ?
> For emphasis, there would be *no change* at all to the semantics of any term, but the existing semantics might be more clearly explained.
> For:
> ====
> 1. In addition to replicating the schemas at that namespace, more detailed usage notes could be added;
> 2. Multilingual labels, comments and usage notes could easily be added (this is something I'm really keen to promote);
> 3. You'd be able to remember the namespace.
> Against
> =======
> 1. Everyone just copies and pastes and loads of tools have the namespaces built in so it's pointless.
> 2. Any copy or derivative work might cause confusion.
> 3. One person's clarity is another person's confusion, meaning that the promise of not changing the semantics might be hard to keep in some people's minds.
> How it might happen
> ===================
> *IF* there is community desire for this then I would suggest that a Community Group be formed to take it on. Any publication of the schema in /ns space would have to make clear that the relevant standards remain untouched and normative so that if any errors are seen, then the /TR doc is the one to choose.
> Good idea?
> Stupid idea?
> Great, count me in for the Community group?
> You are a moron, please don't ever suggest anything like that ever again?
> If your answer is negative then I hereby deny all association :-) I'm just making a public version of something said to me in private.
> Thanks
> Phil.
> -- 
> Phil Archer
> W3C Data Activity Lead (TBC)
> http://philarcher.org
> +44 (0)7887 767755
> @philarcher1

Ivan Herman, W3C 
Digital Publishing Activity Lead
Home: http://www.w3.org/People/Ivan/
mobile: +31-641044153
GPG: 0x343F1A3D
FOAF: http://www.ivan-herman.net/foaf

Received on Thursday, 28 November 2013 14:48:35 UTC

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