W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-rdf-calendar@w3.org > May 2001

www-rdf-calendar list goals (and msg tone)

From: Dan Brickley <danbri@w3.org>
Date: Thu, 31 May 2001 03:27:49 -0400 (EDT)
To: "Charles F. Munat" <chas@munat.com>
cc: <www-rdf-calendar@w3.org>
Message-ID: <Pine.LNX.4.30.0105310238160.480-100000@tux.w3.org>

On Wed, 30 May 2001, Charles F. Munat wrote:
[snip]

> I don't use iCal so frankly I don't give a shit about it. Why should RDF
> Calendaring shove iCal down my throat? Maybe I'll decide to use an iCal-like
> system someday, but shouldn't that be my choice?

Charles, www-rdf-calendar list members,

(I want to say a few things about this mailing list and surrounding
context that may help avoid this kind of argument. But first...)

Could you please try to avoid swearing on RDF Interest Group mailing
lists? While it may sound petty, keeping some control over the tone of our
language helps to create a less threatening, hostile environment. For
those of us know each other or have met offline, out-of-band context may
implicitly lighten the tone, but for those new to this community, swearing
can create a sour and unfriendly atmosphere. So I'd appreciate it if folk
could stick to this simple guideline (ie: swearing: don't). I've no
interest in getting into debate about whether "dash it", "darn" etc count
as swearing. The real point is about (real or perceived) tone and
attitude rather than vocabulary. Perhaps we should have followed Rick
Jelliffe's Schematron model and called this the www-rdf-calendar-lovein
list? See [1] for Rick's critique of the XML-DEV mailing list culture and
on the  need to foster non-confrontational debating styles if we are to
be truly pluralist and international in our work. Swearing on a mailing
list is very different from doing so in real life, where you've a better
sense of audience and audience reaction.



As RDF Interest Group chair, I should say a little bit more about the
context for this mailing list, and about goals. I'm very aware that there
are members of this mailing list who have found other uses for their lives
so far than memorising the details of W3C process. Some of you may not be
quite sure what W3C is, and how this mailing list fits in. So a brief
reminder. From our homepage at http://www.w3.org/ (good source for more
info):

	"W3C develops interoperable technologies (specifications,  guidelines,
	software, and tools) to lead the Web to its full potential as a
	forum for information, commerce, communication, and collective
	understanding."

We do this through two kinds of group: 'working groups' and 'interest
groups'. And we do this using a variety of tools, such as mailing lists.
The mailing list 'www-rdf-calendar' is _not_ a working group, nor an
interest group. It is simply a mailing list. Unlike various other mailing
lists, this one is however associated with a W3C Interest Group, the RDF
Interest Group to be precise. So as RDF IG chair I feel some
responsibility for keeping this an interesting and friendly place (hence
the comments on swearing). See http://www.w3.org/RDF/Interest/ for RDF IG
charter and links to other RDF IG mailing lists.

The www-rdf-calendar list was set up as an informal, exploratory task
force effort to  investigate a variety of strategies for representing
calendar and schedule
information within the RDF information model. We are each free to go our
own way; www-rdf-calendar gives us a place to meet back up and compare
notes. If some of us want to work with an RDF representation of (say) the
Palm Pilot schema, while others want to do either a 100% literal reflection of
iCalendar or an "inspired by" iCalendar schema, that's just fine. Perhaps
I should have been clearer from the outset that this is not a list where
there is a single "argument to be won". When establishing the list, it was
important to acknowledge the prior discussions that have happened in this
area, many of them in the iCalendar and SkiCAL groups. So this list is not
about re-inventing iCalendar, but about ways of integrating iCalendar-like
data (event descriptions, calendars etc) with other kinds of information,
using the RDF model as a common model. In that context, we encourage
listmembers to explore a varity of implementation techniques, schemas etc.

Libby has been good enough to volunteer to help pull some of these
discussions together, and has asked for details of RDF vocabularies people
have implemented or proposed. I should be clear in providing the
surrounding context for this: we are not a W3C "working group" trying to
decide _the_ W3C RDF Calendar Specification for the Web.  We're a group of
developers doing some early work scoping out possibilities in this area.
It's therefore OK to have multiple approaches; what I want to see is
_technical_ debate informed by documented implementation experience. Use
iCalendar if you like; use XML Schema datatypes if you like, whatever
seems to make sense. But do please use this mailing list to share your
findings (and schemas, and perhaps code...). Do also feel free to use
the RDF Interest Group IRC channel[3] if you find real-time chat a useful
collaboration tool; the channel is logged and populated with friendly RDF
developers.

Thanks,

Dan

RDF Interest Group chair

[1] http://groups.yahoo.com/group/xml-dev/message/18922
[2] http://www.w3.org/Consortium/Process-20010208/
    http://www.w3.org/Consortium/Process-20010208/groups.html#GroupsWG
[3] http://www.w3.org/RDF/Interest/#irc

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mailto:danbri@w3.org
http://www.w3.org/People/DanBri/
Received on Thursday, 31 May 2001 03:27:50 GMT

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