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Re: silly question about rdf:about

From: Seth Russell <seth@robustai.net>
Date: Sat, 6 Apr 2002 07:46:17 -0800
Message-ID: <000e01c1dd82$311f33e0$657ba8c0@c1457248a.sttls1.wa.home.com>
To: <www-rdf-interest@w3.org>, "Sandro Hawke" <sandro@w3.org>
I totally agree, and thanks for saying it !

And while we're at it why not just leave the old 'rdf:about' alone for
people who like built-in properties in their systems and make up a new
property name ... call it something obvious ... like for instance 'uri'.

And while were at that, why not invent another useful property ... something
to mean 'preferred human friendly name' ... this would be like a cyc
constant, a kif term, or a rdf:label.  The thing that is different between
it and rdf:about (aside from the fact that it would be human user friendly)
is that it can change (be renamed) from time to time and from system to
system.  But in any given system at any given time it would be unique.  For
a moment let's just call this new term ':named'.   Nodes so named internally
would be tied to URI like this:

    [:uri <http://foo/#Dog>;
      :named  "Doggie"].

We could say that in XML\RDF with:

   <rdf:Description rdf:about="http://foo/#Dog">

Another useful property (that you might like) would be 'local name'.  This
would be used to publish blank node anchors to the external world:

    [a :Dollar;
     :givenTo :Sandro;
     :givenBy :Seth;
     :localName <uuid:Sue1638877566348489>]

What namespace should we use for these kinds of terms ?

Seth Russell

--- in response to ---
From: "Sandro Hawke" <sandro@w3.org>

> Why is rdf:about treated as magic syntax?  Wouldn't everything work
> the same in the grammar if
> http://www.w3.org/1999/02/22-rdf-syntax-ns#about were just another
> property?
> Processors could either be hard-coded to know it was a
> daml:UnambiguousProperty (thus allowing the usual collapsing of nodes)
> or they could read that from the ontology.    (Obviously DAML is not
> part of RDF Core, but the concept of unambiguous properties is still
> around.)
> This interpretation would allow uses like:
>   <rdf:Description>
>      <rdf:about>http://example.com</rdf:about>
>   </rdf:Description>
> and declaring sub-properties of rdf:about to help classify kinds of
> names for things.   It would also allow zero or more names for things,
> which seems perfectly appropriate.
>        -- sandro
Received on Saturday, 6 April 2002 10:50:42 UTC

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