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Re: Introduction: Graham Klyne

From: Brian McBride <bwm@hplb.hpl.hp.com>
Date: Fri, 13 Apr 2001 18:39:36 +0100
Message-ID: <3AD739D8.7C61461F@hplb.hpl.hp.com>
To: Graham Klyne <GK@NineByNine.org>
CC: w3c-rdfcore-wg@w3.org
Hi Graham,

Graham Klyne wrote:

> 
> 5. N3 -- for human discourse about graphs:  the RDF/XML syntax is not an
> easy syntax for human discourse.  Nodes and arcs are all very well, but
> difficult to capture in emails and documents.  N3 seems to neatly capture
> some middle ground here, and it _might_ be worth this group's while to
> clean up the N3 spec (possibly as a W3 NOTE) to provide an easier means to
> talk about RDF ideas in email and other documents.

Found myself in strong agreement with the sentiments you expressed
though less sure about N3.

We are specifically not chartered to develop a new RDF syntax, but we
also clearly need something to use to communicate amongst ourselves as
we discuss the issues and for when we get to the spec writing phase. 
Whatever we use, especially in the final specs, must support the goals
you articulated of clarity and precision.

I'd been envisaging building on the simplest imaginable triple syntax
for representing RDF graphs as that leaves the least ground for
ambiguity and gives us the least work in defining it.  The current m&s
uses (p,s,o).  Which is not say that we can't use richer syntax's where
appropriate, but ultimately, everything needs to be grounded in a triple
syntax.  

I had the idea also, that it would be good if we were able to provide an
'executable specification' of the translation from the RDF XML syntax
into triples and I suspect this will be easier and clearer if this
translation is to a very simple syntax.  I've done an informal
experiment using an attribute grammar with an XSLT implementation and
that seemed to work ok.

Our main task with model and syntax is 'rearticulation' and I'd hate to
see us get distracted from that.  How about starting off focussing on
the issues from the issues list and seeing what notations we find we
need to support our discussions.  And in the meantime it would be a good
idea if everyone were to make sure they were familiar with N3.

Brian
Received on Friday, 13 April 2001 13:39:16 EDT

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