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XML vs. RDF

From: Sean B. Palmer <sean@mysterylights.com>
Date: Mon, 27 Nov 2000 20:48:06 -0000
Message-ID: <007301c058b3$77318c20$d0ed93c3@z5n9x1>
To: "Leonard R. Kasday" <kasday@acm.org>
Cc: <w3c-wai-er-ig@w3.org>
In the telecon, I was asked "What advantages does RDF give over XML".
Besides the fact that RDF is for metadata and XML is simply data, I have the
following quote concerning "element sets" like Dublin Core, etc.:-
[[[
RDF documents at this level do not have great power, and sometimes it is
less than evident why one should bother to map an application in RDF. The
answer is that we expect this data, while limited and simple within an
application, to be combined, later, with data from other applications into a
Web. Applications which run over the whole web must be able to use a common
framework for combining information from all these applications. For
example, access control logic may use a combination of provacy and group
membership and data type information to actually allow or deny access.
Queries may later allow powerful logical expressions refering to data from
domains in which, individually, the data representation language is not very
expressive.
]]] - http://www.w3.org/DesignIssues/Semantic.html
What this means is that emerging technologies allow us to add the following
components to RDF: Assertions, Evolution, Logic, and finally Proof
Validations.
Of course, I must stress that this is still in it's infancy, but if it were
only an XML language, what could we do with it? We'd have to set up our own
proprietary software for logic and repair etc., but why bother? As
Mr.Loughborough put it, "with RDF you get the F".
Also, check out http://www.w3.org/DesignIssues/RDFnot.html

---

"I'm very glad you asked me that, Mrs Rawlinson. The term `holistic' refers
to my conviction that what we are concerned with here is the fundamental
interconnectedness of all things. I do not concern myself with such petty
things as fingerprint powder, telltale pieces of pocket fluff and inane
footprints. I see the solution to each problem as being detectable in the
pattern and web of the whole. The connections between causes and effects are
often much more subtle and complex than we with our rough and ready
understanding of the physical world might naturally suppose, Mrs Rawlinson.
Let me give you an example. If you go to an acupuncturist with toothache he
sticks a needle instead into your thigh. Do you know why he does that, Mrs
Rawlinson? No, neither do I, Mrs Rawlinson, but we intend to find out. A
pleasure talking to you, Mrs Rawlinson. Goodbye." -- Douglas Adams, _Dirk
Gentley's Holistic Detective Agency. [Odd to see TimBL using a quote like
this, but great all the same. http://www.w3.org/DesignIssues/Meaning.html]

Kindest Regards,
Sean B. Palmer
http://xhtml.waptechinfo.com/swr/
http://www.w3.org/WAI/ER/
http://www.w3.org/WAI/GL/
"Perhaps, but let's not get bogged down in semantics."
   - Homer J. Simpson, BABF07.
Received on Monday, 27 November 2000 15:48:33 GMT

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