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Re: Datatyping Summary

From: Brian McBride <bwm@hplb.hpl.hp.com>
Date: Wed, 30 Jan 2002 17:28:48 +0000
Message-Id: <>
To: Dan Connolly <connolly@w3.org>, Patrick Stickler <patrick.stickler@nokia.com>
Cc: RDF core WG <w3c-rdfcore-wg@w3.org>, Jeremy Carroll <jjc@hplb.hpl.hp.com>, Sergey Melnik <melnik@db.stanford.edu>
I have been encouraged by Jeremy to repeat some remarks which might help 
clarify this part of this discussion.  There has been an ongoing debate 
about whether "1984" has a -consistent global meaning-.  I suggest some of 
the confusion comes from different use of language amongst members of the 
WG and suggest the following simple model might be helpful.

Consider an implementation model where we have an application built on a 
generic RDF processing tool.

            ---------------------  the line
            Generic RDF Processor

Lets take S idiom B:

   <book> <dc:Title> "1984" .
   <mary> <age>      "1984" .

Below the line only processing which conforms with the RDF model theory is 
sanctioned.  Below the line, both occurences of the string "1984" denote a 

This does not preclude an application applying above the line knowledge 
that the value of the <age> property is the lexical representation of a 
integer, get the value of the <age> property of Mary, which is "1984", 
transform it to an integer and then do whatever it likes with that 
value.  But than happens above the line.

When Dan says that "1984" has a single consistent global interpretation, I 
take him to mean, that applies below the line.  Below the line, only the 
model theory applies.   Nothing I have seen DanC write has suggested to me 
that an application is in some way prohibited from interpreting "1984" as 
the lexical representation of an integer.

When Patrick says that it has been clearly demonstrated that "1984" cannot 
have a single global intepretation, I believe he is referring to the above 
the line interpretation.

Thus Patrick and Dan are talking about different things and they could both 
be right.


At 09:44 30/01/2002 -0600, Dan Connolly wrote:
>On Tue, 2002-01-29 at 03:19, Patrick Stickler wrote:
> > I believe that Jeremy's recent 1984 example (in
> > addition to other examples provided over the past
> > few days) clearly demonstrates that a literal
> > does not have consistent global meaning.
>No, you have not established that as fact.
>I accept it as your preferred design choice,
>and I accept that you find S unacceptable
>in various ways, but S is a coherent design
>wherein "1984" does have a consistent global
>Dan Connolly, W3C http://www.w3.org/People/Connolly/
Received on Wednesday, 30 January 2002 12:40:24 UTC

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