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Issue xmlsch-10 "canonical syntax" proposal to close

From: Dave Beckett <dave.beckett@bristol.ac.uk>
Date: Thu, 24 Apr 2003 11:12:28 +0100
To: w3c-rdfcore-wg@w3.org
Message-ID: <32233.1051179148@hoth.ilrt.bris.ac.uk>


Summary: reject (out of charter)

The comment raised in
http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/www-rdf-comments/2003JanMar/0489.html
in the depths of section 4.4

[[
    We note with admiration the excellent tutorial introduction to the
    striped syntax in Section 2
    [36]http://www.w3.org/TR/rdf-syntax-grammar/#section-Syntax]. We are
    less happy with the nature of the syntax, and with the approach taken
    to its normative statement
    [37]http://www.w3.org/TR/rdf-syntax-grammar/#section-Infoset-Grammar]
    .
    As regards the syntax itself, we would much prefer to have seen a move
    to a single canonical syntax with much less variablity. With respect,
    the current design suggests that the value of XML has been
    misunderstood. The range of alternative forms of expression provided
    for in the current design make it very difficult to use the broad
    range of generic XML tools (e.g. syntax-directed editors, XSLT) which
    could give so much benefit to RDF users. (More on this below.) At the
    very least we would encourage you to specify a single canonical form,
    probably strictly striped, which could be defined by an XML Schema or
    DTD. We would be happy to work with you to develop a schema for such a
    subset.
]]

which is pretty much all commentary and one thing, the issue:
  [[
  At the very least we would encourage you to specify a single
  canonical form, probably strictly striped, which could be defined
  by an XML Schema or DTD.
  ]]


Here is a draft response:

[[
The RDF Core WG has considered your last call comment captured in

   http://www.w3.org/2001/sw/RDFCore/20030123-issues/#xmlsch-10

(raised in section
 "4.4. Normative specification of XML grammar (policy, substantive)" of
http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/www-rdf-comments/2003JanMar/0489.html )

and decided

   URL-HERE

to reject it.


A canonical syntax for RDF/XML - a syntax format that matched the RDF
abstract syntax one-to-one - was something that the RDF Core WG
considered.  However it was already known that RDF/XML could not
express all RDF graphs:
  http://www.w3.org/TR/rdf-syntax-grammar/#section-Serialising
(this has got better with the addition of the rdf:nodeID construct)
and was unconstrained in the choice of XML qnames when it was
designed in 1999.  

This means RDF/XML isn't very suitable for defining with an XML
schema language such as W3C XML Schema or DTDs.  This would have
meant inventing a new XML format, which was out of RDF Core's
charter:
  [[The RDF Core WG is neither chartered to develop a new RDF syntax, ...]]
  -- http://www.w3.org/2001/sw/RDFCoreWGCharter

For testing purposes, RDF Core did design a small and complete
non-XML format called N-Triples which has proved very useful in
precisely writing down test cases from WG decisions but isn't
suitable as an end-user canonical syntax.

We appreciate the XML Schema WG's offer for help with design of new
XML syntaxes.

]]

Dave
Received on Thursday, 24 April 2003 06:15:23 EDT

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