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RE: XML observation

From: <Patrick.Stickler@nokia.com>
Date: Wed, 9 Jul 2003 13:11:19 +0300
Message-ID: <A03E60B17132A84F9B4BB5EEDE57957B0263017A@trebe006.europe.nokia.com>
To: <duerst@w3.org>, <w3c-rdfcore-wg@w3.org>
Cc: <w3c-i18n-ig@w3.org>

> -----Original Message-----
> From: ext Martin Duerst [mailto:duerst@w3.org]
> Sent: 08 July, 2003 17:42
> To: Stickler Patrick (NMP/Tampere); w3c-rdfcore-wg@w3.org
> Cc: w3c-i18n-ig@w3.org
> Subject: RE: XML observation
> Hello Patrick,
> At 11:21 03/07/07 +0300, Patrick.Stickler@nokia.com wrote:
> > > From: ext Martin Duerst [mailto:duerst@w3.org]
> > > I would like to answer in more detail, and hope to do so 
> next week,
> > > but here just a few points.
> > >
> > > - Yes, the usage of XML for both textual markup and data 
> is confusing
> > >    to many, even many who are working on the specs.
> > > - Please note that for parseType="Literal", we are actually mostly
> > >    dealing with textual markup, not with data, and it is 
> not only not
> > >    adequate, but plain backwards to raise the 'data 
> issue' to suppress
> > >    the conventions that XML has for textual markup.
> >
> >On the contrary, it is because RDF/XML is a data markup language,
> >not a textual markup language, that this 'data issue' is precisely
> >relevant.
> RDF (and therefore RDF/XML) is indeed mainly designed for data.
> But parseType="Literal" is different. Actually, if RDF were only
> for 'pure' data, parseType="Literal" would never have been put
> into M&S. So parseType="Literal" and XML literals are the missing
> piece that allows to bridge both worlds.

I don't disagree, in principle, with that.

What we seem to disagree with is how far that bridge should
extend into either world.

> >And by what basis do you presume that all XML literals will
> >constitute natural language textual content?!
> Well, maybe not all. But a lot. Natural language text and
> mixed content. That's what's not covered well in the rest
> of RDF. Sticking data-oriented XML into a parseType="Literal"
> will be done mainly by people who didn't understand RDF
> in the first place.

Er... like me?  ;-)

I really find your view of what is "usual" XML usage or
"proper" RDF usage to be grossly overrestrictive.

> Also, when discussing this very topic in Budapest with Jeremy
> and Brian, I got told that they had never seen anything else
> than html in parseType="Literal", and were using that as an
> argument that using <html:span> as a wrapper would always
> be fine. We would appreciate if the RDF Core WG would be
> able to at least agree on some basics.

I won't attempt to answer for them, but I suspect that
they were referring to XML with natural language content
as XML literals, not arbitrary XML literals. 

I think, though, that the WG does have a fairly strong
concensus about this issue, about where to draw the line
between encapsulated content and encapsulating markup,
and that the present solution reflects that concensus.

> >But in this final moments, to the degree we are able, we
> >should try to minimize those errors and not use them
> >as justification for proliferating them or their like
> >further.
> We may agree or disagree on what the correct model is.
> But it seems strange that you are happy with an inconsistent
> system, as far as you just got some of your points.

I am not completely happy with an inconsistent system.

But I am less happy with a consistently wrong system.

> It may be much better for you to acknowledge that the
> model is different (as originally designed!), and that
> a consistent approach has a lot of advantages.

My view remains unchanged that the present solution is
the most optimal -- all things considered. It is not
perfect. I've stated that clearly. It is not 
consistent. I've also stated that clearly. It has
what I consider to be errors. I've stated that
clearly. But it is better than any of the other
options that have been proposed/considered, and we
do not have the luxury of taking time to consider
any new options.

We must leave it for a future WG to provide that
ellusive perfect solution.

Received on Wednesday, 9 July 2003 06:11:33 UTC

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