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Containers and the RDF Model (A3)

From: Dan Brickley <danbri@w3.org>
Date: Fri, 18 May 2001 08:02:23 -0400 (EDT)
To: <w3c-rdfcore-wg@w3.org>
Message-ID: <Pine.LNX.4.30.0105180754410.9025-100000@tux.w3.org>

Regarding http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/w3c-rdfcore-wg/2001May/0084.html
RDFCore WG 2001-05-18 Teleconference Agenda action review A3:

	A3: Ora Lassilla/ send analysis (#rdf-container-syntax-ambiguity and
	    Dan Brickley  #rdf-containers-syntax-vs-schema)to rdfcore-wg list

I wrote up some *brief* notes on my Hong Kong discussion w/ Ora last week,
sent them to Ora and the www-archive list archiver rather than this list.
I wouldn't call this a full analysis of the problem w/ the container
model, but the note is at:


Excerpted conclusion:

Two problems are posed by this formulation:

 - it suggests that any RDF model which describes some container is in
possession of a complete description of that container. The phrase "the
elements of Ord must be used in sequence starting with RDF:_1" appears to
rule out the use of the formal RDF container model for descriptions where
only partial information is available. Use case: an rdf:Seq representing
the (incompletely represented) houses in a street.

 - it interacts with the syntactic sugar provided by the <rdf:li> XML
syntax machinery: RDF parsers typically assume that containers encoded
using this construct contain complete descriptions of some Bag, Seq or
Alt. But there is no syntax-level support for making this clear.

This situation is in tension with a broad design goal of RDF: to allow Web
services to aggregate and process partial descriptions.

We (Ora and I) do not yet make any suggestions as to how to deal with
this problem.

Received on Friday, 18 May 2001 08:02:23 UTC

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