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Re: Issue http://www.w3.org/2000/03/rdf-tracking/#rdf-ns-prefix-confusion

From: Ralph R. Swick <swick@w3.org>
Date: Wed, 25 Apr 2001 10:41:14 -0400
Message-Id: <200104251441.KAA22733@tux.w3.org>
To: Brian McBride <bwm@hplb.hpl.hp.com>
Cc: <w3c-rdfcore-wg@w3.org>
[taking the liberty to write to the WG as a participant in its predecessor]

At 01:02 PM 4/25/2001 +0100, Brian McBride wrote:

>The m&s grammar is clear; attributes such as ID, about etc are
>unqualified.  Both proposals suggest that this is changed to require
>qualified attributes.

It was not my intent, nor do I believe it was the intent of the M&S WG
when http://www.w3.org/TR/1999/REC-rdf-syntax-19990222 was
published to say that the syntactic attributes are unqualified.  It was
rather a misunderstanding of how the XML folk thought XML Namespaces
should work.  (FWIW, my interpretation was that from the XML-only
perspective, the rdf:Description element could define the attributes
in its "per-element-type" partition to have the same meaning as
the qualified rdf:about attribute.  Similarly for property elements in
other namespaces.  Exactly how this was to be done had to wait
for XML Schema, which post-dated RDF M&S as you all know.)

I'm satisfied if the developer community chooses now to agree
that the 1.0 spec should be interpreted as clearly one way or
clearly the other.  I just wanted to be clear that that was not this
editor's understanding of the WG's intent when the grammar
was written.  It is in retrospect clear to me that it was a dis-service
to abbreviate the BNF grammar with the handwave at the beginning
of section 6 "Syntactic features inherited from XML are not reproduced here. "

>If the grammar were changed as in this proposal, all strictly conforming
>RDF 1.0 would not be legal RDF 1.1 (well maybe you could argue that its
>legal, but it wouldn't mean the right thing).

I think you have to describe how you now define "strictly conforming".
As M&S 1.0 did not specify conformance tests, any such description is
at best retrospective and can therefore be made to suit the conditions
as you presently find them within the deployed application base.

-Ralph
Received on Wednesday, 25 April 2001 10:42:40 EDT

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