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Re: XHTML and RDF; thinking about Trix, etc

From: Graham Klyne <GK@ninebynine.org>
Date: Thu, 26 Feb 2004 11:52:05 +0000
Message-Id: <>
To: "www-rdf-interest" <www-rdf-interest@w3.org>
Cc: "Jos De_Roo" <jos.deroo@agfa.com>

At 02:41 26/02/04 +0100, Jos De_Roo wrote:

>it gives a very good feeling to read things like

Hey, yes!  That's some nice work.  Thanks for the reference.

I'd like to see a nice user interface for this kind of thing built into an 
HTML editor :-).  (It puts me in mind of a kind of "literate RDF"?)


Anyway, to broader topics.

I've been mulling over the recent discussion of Trix [1] from Jeremy and 

I have been thinking that it is a worthy piece of work, but have been 
struggling to find a coherent view about why, after several years, we want 
to start talking about /another/ XML syntax for RDF.  If the purpose of the 
existing RDF standard is to provide a single recommended way to exchange 
RDF between applications, then is yet another XML syntax for RDF not the 
last thing we want muddying the waters at this time?

I've also been having some thoughts about how, now that RDF is a full 
Recommendation, I might be able to promote its adoption in real-world 
applications, which means articulating some benefits of using RDF.  My 
thoughts have been lead in part by a comment by Brian McBride at a meeting 
last year, roughly:  "the question we ask should not be 'how do we get (all 
this data) converted to RDF', but rather 'how do we bring the benefits of 
RDF processing to (all this data)'".  I surely misquote, but I hope the 
intent is not damaged.  Part if the value I see in Mark Birbeck's paper 
[2], cited by Jos, is the way it addresses this question (for XHTML).

Reading Mark's paper [2] together with these other thoughts, lead me to a 
possible conclusion.  Maybe we don't really need another stand-alone 
RDF/XML format, but something we can use is a way to incrementally embed 
RDF in existing XML documents in a way that is amenable to processing with 
existing XML tools, and in particular easy isolation of the RDF into some 
representation of its abstract syntax.

I haven't looked or thought deeply enough about the technical issues, but 
I'm wondering if some combination of ideas from Trix [1] and "XHTML and 
RDF" [2] might not provide a framework for such?


[1] http://www.hpl.hp.com/techreports/2003/HPL-2003-268.html

[2] http://www.w3.org/MarkUp/2004/02/xhtml-rdf.html

Graham Klyne
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Received on Thursday, 26 February 2004 10:55:47 UTC

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