W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > w3c-rdfcore-wg@w3.org > July 2001

RE: literals as resources

From: Pierre G. Richard <prichard@brience.com>
Date: Fri, 6 Jul 2001 19:54:30 +0200
To: <w3c-rdfcore-wg@w3.org>
Message-ID: <000801c10644$c5e4e620$24026e0a@haddock>
To clarify my position.
- A RDF-literal is a resource, in the common sense of the term "resource".
- It is not a RDF-resource as defined by the M&S, because a RDF-literal
has no URI.

Seen in other computing worlds:
- A java String is an Object, a java char[] is a primitve data type.
- An <!ENTITY> can be internal (a literal), external: SYSTEM, PUBLIC,
or even NDATA with a Notation attached

Java or XML could have get rid of (respectively) char[], internal entities.
They didn't.  And this brings me to ask the Question and my own answer:

Q: does RDF need "literal" e.g. a primitive (non-RDF)resource type?
(My) A: YES.  Because prooved by Computer History (aka Axiom.)
If one needs something more elaborate, one is able to use a data URI
scheme, or some appropriate protocol.  RDF does say:
"The object of a statement can be another resource or a literal"
I can do what I want.  I'm happy.

The term "resource" is just too imprecise.  Should it be RDF-resource,
U-Resource (Universal resource, accessible by the Universe) or
resource in italics?
In brief, I don't see anything wrong in the current M&S that precisely
defines what a RDF-resource is.  The term is just confusing.
Or shall we say "a literal is a primitive resource, and, in this sense,
doesn't belong to what RDF names "resource."

Again, the real question is: do we have the need for "vanilia strings"?


> -----Original Message-----
> From: w3c-rdfcore-wg-request@w3.org
> [mailto:w3c-rdfcore-wg-request@w3.org]On Behalf Of Frank Manola
> Sent: Friday, July 06, 2001 5:09 PM
> To: rdf core
> Subject: literals as resources
> Just to continue the thought I was expressing when the audio cut off:
> I think what a number of people are concerned about is the possibility
> of spending a lot of discussion time trying to thrash out the
> ramifications of deciding the question of literals as
> resources one way
> or the other.  I'd like to suggest that anyone who wants to should
> simply write up what they would like to see the M&S say about
> this as a
> proposed change to the spec (having, possibly with the help of other
> interested members, worked the details out to some level of
> completeness).  I, for one, wouldn't rigidly rule a proposal
> along these
> lines that seemed to make sense out of order on some
> artificial "out of
> scope" grounds;  but a lot of committee discussion time without this
> sort of ground work having been done ahead of time does seem like a
> waste of crucial bandwidth.
> --Frank
> --
> Frank Manola                   The MITRE Corporation
> 202 Burlington Road, MS A345   Bedford, MA 01730-1420
> mailto:fmanola@mitre.org       voice: 781-271-8147   FAX: 781-271-8752
Received on Friday, 6 July 2001 13:56:06 UTC

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