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Re: need to determine what RDF is

From: Dan Connolly <connolly@w3.org>
Date: 31 May 2002 15:13:50 -0500
To: patrick hayes <phayes@ai.uwf.edu>
Cc: Dan Brickley <danbri@w3.org>, "McBride, Brian" <bwm@hplb.hpl.hp.com>, www-rdf-comments@w3.org, em@w3.org, pfps@research.bell-labs.com, guha@guha.com
Message-Id: <1022876031.24872.337.camel@dirk>

On Fri, 2002-05-31 at 14:43, patrick hayes wrote:
> Danbri wrote:
> >It just *is* a thing that is a transitive relation, just like
> >phone:+44-117-907wxyz is a thing that is (nearly) my home phone number and
> >java:org.example.rdf.xyz is a thing that is a Java class and
> >mailto:danbri@w3.org is my mailbox and isbn:0-88730-824-4 is a book on
> >marketing and z3950://my.desire.org:2001/ is a Z39.50 bibliographic
> >database that's currently offline and irc://irc.openprojects.net/rdfig is
> >my favourite IRC channel.
> 
> Wrong. RDF (and RDFS and OWL and KIF and every formal assertional 
> language) does not have proper names in it. None of the terms in any 
> of these languages can be said to just *be* any particular thing. The 
> languages only describe; they do not refer. In any case, 
> rdfs:subClassOf isn't a 'thing' in the world in the way that phones 
> and mailboxes are. That term might (indeed, certainly does) refer to 
> different properties in different interpretations.

Agreed; this idea of mapping names to different things in
different interpretations was sorta the central epiphany
on my road to understanding model theory, entailment,
etc.

I'm still figuring out how to reconcile it with principles
of web architecture...

[[
Axiom 1: Global scope

  It doesn't matter to whom or where you specify that URI,
  it will have the same meaning.
]]
 -- http://www.w3.org/DesignIssues/Axioms.html#unique


-- 
Dan Connolly, W3C http://www.w3.org/People/Connolly/
Received on Friday, 31 May 2002 16:14:22 GMT

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