W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-rdf-interest@w3.org > February 2000

Re: A certain difficulty

From: Frank Boumphrey <bckman@ix.netcom.com>
Date: Tue, 22 Feb 2000 02:58:20 -0500
Message-ID: <009601bf7d0a$96b43280$e8b0aec7@prioritynetworks.net>
To: "Mark Grossman" <msg@geocast.com>, "Greg FitzPatrick" <gf@medianet.org>
Cc: <xml-dev@xml.org>, <www-rdf-interest@w3.org>
> I sympathize.  It took me much much longer than a week to "get" RDF.

I agree. I copy a note to my publisher

" if you want me to write a chapter on RDF i will want double pay:>)"

frank
----- Original Message -----
From: Mark Grossman <msg@geocast.com>
To: Greg FitzPatrick <gf@medianet.org>
Cc: <xml-dev@xml.org>; <www-rdf-interest@w3.org>
Sent: Monday, February 21, 2000 4:33 PM
Subject: Re: A certain difficulty


> I sympathize.  It took me much much longer than a week to "get" RDF.   I
> started at a disadvantage, having very little background in knowledge
> representation and scant experience with XML.  I really did think it was I
who
> was stupid for a while.
> I ended up at an advantage, having met directly with R. Guha a couple
times.
> Now that I get it, I am pretty convinced it will be a useful foundation
for my
> company's application.  And I'm relieved to discover that neither I nor
RDF is
> stupid -- it's just a matter of poor communication.
>
> Now the bad news.  The specs take you only so far in learning the powers
and
> pitfalls.  The examples floating around out there are not terribly
> elucidating.  And the publicly available tools are barely functional or
> out-and-out broken.  It would be great if there were a grad student or two
out
> there somewhere who could crank out an "RDF Companion", a working
standalone
> parser and API written in C,  and  and fix the typos in the spec.
>
>    -- Mark
>
> Greg FitzPatrick wrote:
>
> > I was an invited speaker at the W3C/WAP Forum workshop on Position
> > Advantaged Information Systems (PAIS)at INREA last week.
> >
> > Both I, representing SKiCal, and the man representing the Open GIS
> > Consortium, made references to RDF representation of our respective
domains.
> >
> > During the GIS talk the following was heard from the floor.
> >
> > "We (a working group of 7 technicians from the WAP FORUM Telematics
Expert
> > Group) tried it (RDF).  We tried like hell for over a week's time and we
> > never got it. Sure we could put some things together with nodes and
arcs,
> > but after that we had no idea where to go.  We downloaded every thing we
> > could find, only to become more confused."
> >
> > "XML is a cinch - but with RDF you have to make yourself a choice;
Either
> > RDF is stupid - or you are!"
> >
> > I thought this was a pretty brave thing to say, since nobody else in the
> > room had dared to say (if that was the case) that they had had trouble
> > understanding RDF.  But then  assenters starting making themselves known
> > through out the room.
> >
> > Despite who or what is stupid, I guess I am not as brave as the kid who
> > called the king naked, in saying that the syntax and model
specifications
> > are not the documents they should be if we are going to win converts to
the
> > RDF cause.
> >
> > Perhaps they should be tightened up to the terseness of XML 1.0.  Or
someone
> > can find a good pedagogue to take care of the verbosity stuff.
> >
> > That this group of engineers made a sincere effort to implement RDF and
> > failed, is saddening
> >
> > Greg
>
> --
> Mark Grossman
> Geocast Network Systems       Tel: (650)566-3259
> 190 Independence Dr.          Fax: (650)566-8112
> Menlo Park, CA 94025          E-Mail: msg@geocast.com
>
>
>
>
>
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Received on Tuesday, 22 February 2000 02:41:23 GMT

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