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comments on RDF draft 8 Oct 1998: drop Alt

From: Jim Davis <jdavis@parc.xerox.com>
Date: Wed, 21 Oct 1998 13:32:50 PDT
Message-Id: <>
To: www-rdf-comments@w3.org
I think you should drop Alt, because I don't believe it can be reliably

The point is, Alt conveys an implicit belief by the writer about the
purpose to which the reader will employ the container.  

To illustrate this, consider the two container you employ in example 3.2.1.
 The first is a Bag of students (in 6.001), the second an Alt of FTP sites.

Okay, the Alt of FTP sites is implicitly assuming that the reason I want
the container is because I want to e.g. download, and downloading from any
one site is enough.  But suppose I want the list of sites because I want to
upload a new version of xclock?  Likewise the student roster is a Bag,
which is fine if I want to e.g. ensure that all of them hand in their
tests.  But suppose I want instead to pick one at random for an survey?
Then I'd use an Alt.

I claim that RDF should simply let me state the members of a container, and
let the application decide whether for its purposes it needs to visit all
the members or any one of them.   The distinction between Bag and Alt is
too fragile to deserve being encoded into the underlying representation.

thank you for this opportunity to comment. 
Received on Wednesday, 21 October 1998 16:33:28 UTC

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