W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-webont-wg@w3.org > January 2002

Re: Layering on the Semantic Web

From: Jeremy Carroll <jjc@hplb.hpl.hp.com>
Date: Fri, 4 Jan 2002 12:25:45 +0100
To: <www-webont-wg@w3.org>
Message-ID: <MABBLGKMPIJFCKFGDBEPIEJDCAAA.jjc@hplb.hpl.hp.com>
> It will be helpful if we can get reactions on this proposal
My response is negative.

I think we should remember that the RDF Core WG is currently active.
Some of the problems to do with RDF can and should be fixed by them.

We should only part company with RDF if OWL has requirements that are
different from other RDF applications and which are not met by RDF.

> - RDF is not well suited as syntax carrier:
>   - the problems that Peter has identified with "additional" tuples
>     (which specify only syntax) ending up in the RDF model and breaking
the inference

My reading of
  http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/www-webont-wg/2001Dec/0156.html
is that Peter is proposing dropping the problematic daml:collection
construct.
Jos is currently arguing that RDF allows unasserted triples, and his Euler
system shows how that can work in practice. I think both these paths address
this issue.

>  - problems with scoping

There are inevitably issues with ontological scoping, since in the semantic
web I may well want to annotate your descriptions in your ontology with my
descriptions in my ontology. There are issues as to how to merge information
from multiple sources. I am far from convinced though that scoping problems
are specific to OWL.

>  - its inability to constrain the syntax adequately
>    (e.g., the problem with strange combinations of restrictions
>     which is responsible for much of the ugly DAML+OIL syntax).
>  - general unreadability by human processors

The RDF/XML syntax stinks. Not an OWL specific problem though. There are
other RDF syntaxes. The abstract graph is not nearly as bad (just you can
only draw it!). If you don't like the syntax invent your own XML, and write
an XSLT transform to produce conformant RDF/XML. Then write some Java code
and stick it in Jena as an RDFWriter.

I don't think this group has any greater ability in syntax than either of
the RDF working groups (the current one or the former one). I see no reason
that we should believe that we can do a better job in syntax than the mess
we inherit. Do we have people in the group who are world class at language
syntax design?


Summary:
  The problems identified with RDF are not *our* problems.


Jeremy
Received on Friday, 4 January 2002 06:17:59 GMT

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.2.0+W3C-0.50 : Monday, 7 December 2009 10:57:47 GMT